Things to Do in September

From the start of fall foliage to Oktoberfest celebrations, September is full of events guaranteed to offer a memorable start to the season.

Photo By: Photononstop / Getty Images

Photo By: Getty Images

Photo By: Getty Images

Photo By: Getty Images Entertainment

Photo By: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Photo By: Getty Images

Photo By: Lakeview Photography

Photo By: Getty Images

Photo By: Budapest Wine Festival

Photo By: Reuters/Francois Lenoir

Photo By: Education Images/ Universal Images Group/ Getty Images

Photo By: Getty Images Sport

Photo By: Reuters/Darrin Zammit Lupi

Photo By: Tro Pics Hawaii

Photo By: Getty Images Sport

Photo By: Photodisc / Getty Images

Photo By: Getty Images News

Oktoberfest

Raise a stein to Oktobertfest. This annual, 16-day celebration of all things beer kicks off in late September in Munich. Can’t make it to Germany? Bring your taste for brewski to these US Oktoberfest events.

Fall Foliage

Mark your calendars: The fall foliage season kicks off in the northern regions this month. Our top picks for New England fall foliage splendor include Vermont, Connecticut and Maine, where colors typically start to change around mid-September. 

Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival

Call it an excuse to party: Come Sept. 27, the 3-day Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival begins. In mainland China, the annual festival is the second biggest holiday of the year (right behind the country’s spring festival). Experience Mid-Autumn fun yourself at Chicago’s Moon Festival

Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance (Hong Kong)

Top off Mid-Autumn Festival celebrations with the Tai Hang fire dragon dance. This 3-day-long event, held during the Mid-Autumn Festival, carries on a tradition that’s more than 100 years old. In the Hong Kong community of Tai Hang, some 300 performers take to the streets, dancing, waving incense sticks and animating a 220-foot-long dragon.

Braemar Gathering (Braemar, Scotland)

Pull! A tug-of-war team competes during the Braemar Highland Games in Scotland. A tradition that dates back 200 years, the Braemar Gathering is the most famous of the Highland Games, attracting thousands of visitors to the small Scottish village of Braemar the first Saturday in September. 

New York Fashion Week

See what’s current at New York Fashion Week. The semi-annual event, officially known as Mercedes-Benz FashionWeek. Top fashion designers showing their Spring/Summer couture include Carolina Herrera alongside relative newcomers, like the designers of the Tome fashion label. 

Kentucky Bourbon Festival (Bardstown, KY)

Spirits lovers will want to head to Bardstown, KY -- the bourbon capital of the world since 1776. Every September, the small city hosts the weeklong Kentucky Bourbon Festival, which showcases more than 30 bourbon-related happenings, including the chance to sample the many different flavors of bourbon and whiskey, each sure to give you a nice kick in the gut.

Texas State Fair (Dallas)

“Our state fair is a great state fair.” How can it not be when it’s in Texas? Beginning the last Friday in September, the annual Texas State Fair unfolds over 24 days in Dallas, TX, with plenty of fun for the whole family, including the chance to ride this Ferris wheel – the largest in North America. 

Budapest Wine Festival

Sure, Napa Valley is great, but why not try something different this year? Held since 1991, the annual Budapest Wine Festival is the largest event of its kind in Hungary, attracting more than 50,000 people a year. Sip red and white vintages, while strolling the grounds of the historic Buda Castle, which dates back to the 14th century. 

Belgian Beer Weekend

The drinking fun doesn’t end in Budapest! Head to Belgium for Belgian Beer Weekend. Held at Brussel’s Grand Place square, this annual celebration in early September showcases Belgian brews from more than 30 small and big breweries.  

Monterey Jazz Fest (Monterey, CA)

Give it up for great music at the 56th annual Monterey Jazz Festival. As the world’s longest-running jazz festival, Monterey attracts more than 500 artists, on 3 stages, for 3 nights and 2 days. This year’s lineup includes jazz legend Herbie Hancock.

Ryder Cup (Perthshire, Scotland)

The PGA Centenary Course at Gleneagles in Perthshire, Scotland, will host the 40th Ryder Cup, where the US team will make an attempt to win back the trophy from the European team. Designed by professional golfer Jack Nicklaus, the golf course is located in the heart of Scotland, and boasts beautiful landscape views of the Perthshire countryside.

Malta International Airshow

See jet-propelled acrobatic feats at the Malta International Airshow. One of the largest outdoor events on the Mediterranean island, this nearly 20-year-old airshow, held outside the capital of Valletta, offers a first-hand view of precision acrobatic demonstrations, like the Patrouille de France, the aerobatic team of the French Air Force, pictured here. 

Waikiki Roughwater Swim (Honolulu)

Take to the water in the Waikiki Roughwater Swim. Held in early September, this annual event, now in its 44th year, attracts about 1,000 swimmers competing in the waters off Honolulu’s Waikiki Beach. In between competition times, enjoy some Waikiki family fun

College Football Kickoff

Are you ready for some college football? It’s kick-off time! Grab your buds and head to America’s best college football stadiums, from Michigan Stadium (the largest football stadium in the US) to University of Tennessee’s Neyland Stadium (the third largest stadium in the US).

Constitution Day

Celebrate Constitution Day and the anniversary of the signing of the US Constitution with a trip to Washington, DC, on September 17. The National Archives has the original Constitution on display in the Rotunda, along with the Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence. Make the most out of your trip to DC and pay a visit to the Smithsonian museums and monuments along the National Mall. 

California Wine Month

Calling all wine enthusiasts! September is California Wine Month and wineries in regions throughout the state -- from Napa Valley to Temecula Valley -- will be marking the harvest and celebrating the month with special wine tours, tastings, concerts and more.  

Next Up

Where to Travel in September

See our picks for where to go in September.

Things to Do in Germany

Check out our top picks for things to do in Germany.