With its clear, cool, humidity-free days, gorgeous golden palette and emphasis on eating all the baked goods, fall is unequivocally, indisputably the greatest season ever. (Sorry, summer lovers.) Here, your epic bucket list of 51 fall activities, which luckily, are totally cool to do while social-distancing. Grab your flannel and get excited, folks.
1. Eat a cider doughnut
Or half a dozen of them (no judgments). Even better, make your own with our recipe for apple cider doughnut holes.
2. Make a batch of mulled wine
So what if our house smells like a Yankee Candle IRL…we secretly love those. Wanna DIY it? We’ll be sipping on this mulled wine sangria all season long.
3. Pack a fall picnic
Fill your picnic basket with the essentials: wine, grapes, a baguette and enough cheese for 15 people—despite being a two-person picnic.
4. Go apple picking
5. Buy gourds at the farmers market
And resist the temptation to stick googly eyes on them. (Or don’t. We kind of love cutesy Halloween decorations.)
6. Visit a pumpkin patch
It just wouldn’t be fall without it. And if you don’t Instagram it, did it really happen? (Psst: Here are 15 pumpkin patches around the U.S. to check out.)
7. Take a bike ride over the weekend
Scenic paths and maybe even a little whistling are encouraged. Channel your inner Gilmore Girl and tour a cute small town if you’re nearby.
8. Skip the gym in favor of daily runs in the brisk morning air
Not really a runner? Here’s how to get started. (Power walks are also accepted.)
9. Take a chilly beach stroll
Fact: The beach is kinda prettiest in the off-season. (Just pack a few blankets in case it gets breezy.)
10. Rake a giant pile of leaves
And promptly belly-flop into it, just like you did as a kid. (C’mon, that’s basically what leaf-raking was designed for.)
11. Tailgate a football game
Whether there’s actually a game to watch this year or not, we can all agree that hot wings are the best part of football Sundays anyway. Make your own oven-baked buffalo wings and watch them disappear.
12. Or bask in the Sunday quietude
While the rest of the world is worrying about, you know, football.
13. Book a weekend getaway in the woods
Don't forget your nubby knitwear, your guide to safely renting and staying in an Airbnb and someone to snuggle with.
14. Cook with Brussels sprouts
Make any of these unique Brussels sprouts recipes to soothe your September tomato-season withdrawals.
15. Buy a cute new planner
Pair it with a stack of freshly sharpened pencils because it's back-to-school somewhere (even if it is online).
16. Make a big pot of chili
Spend Sunday afternoon perfecting this white turkey chili with avocado, then eat it all damn week.
17. Carve a jack-o’-lantern
Or skip the pumpkin goo and just decorate one.
18. Toast pumpkin seeds
If you’re not afraid of pumpkin guts, they’re easy to roast and even easier to eat. Toss ’em in a salad, mix them into homemade trail mix or just snack by the handful.
19. Decorate your porch (or front door)
If you don't buy mums at the hardware store, do you even like fall? Here are 30 more autumnal porch ideas to tickle your fancy.
20. Make a fall centerpiece for the dining table
Time to channel your inner Martha Stewart. Backyard branches = budget ikebana.
21. Clean the windows
Let there be golden-amber light.
22. Then open the windows
Better than an air freshener. Trust.
23. Take a drive in the countryside
Lazy leaf-peeping is the best kind of leaf-peeping. (Check the fall foliage map then plan your day trip.)
24. Buy an autumn-scented candle
Oh please, like you don't love the smell of pumpkin spice, too. Not sold on store-bought? Here’s how to freshen your home the DIY way.
25. Add cozy decor to your home
Give us all the faux-fur pillow covers and cable-knit throws. For more inspiration, take a peek at some of our favorite Halloween door decorations.
26. Watch the geese fly south
Go ahead, bliss out on nature doing its thang.
27. Host a socially-distant harvest dinner party
Cozy up from six feet away with two picnic blankets and two (or a few) bottles of wine. Bonus: It’s a foolproof way to test your Thanksgiving recipes.
28. Curl up with a great book
Or you know, an excellent crappy book. Whatever suits your fancy. We have plenty of suggestions.
29. Watch a quintessentially fall movie
Yes, we’ve watched Love Story 50 times, and no, we’re not sorry about it. (Although we’ll also be adding these classics to our rotation too.)
30. Collect leaves and pinecones
Nothing says “I heart fall” like foraging like a wood nymph then turning your found treasures into tchotchkes.
31. Drink dark, hoppy beer
Call it a placebo, but rich beer literally tastes better to us in the fall. And if beer’s not your thing, swap it for hot buttered rum.
32. Make a backyard bonfire
We’ll take any excuse to make (and eat) s’mores.
33. Break out your plaids and flannels
Fall: The one time of year it's totally chill to dress like a farmer. Go ahead and wear them all at once; you’re staying home, right?
34. Break out your sweaters and scarves
It’s (debatably) the highlight of the whole damn season. And learn how to take care of those chunky knits here.
35. Break out your leather booties
These ankles boots were made for walkin' on crunchy leaves.
36. Treat yourself to a chic new coat
Mid-weight coats are the best weight coats, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Next step: Learn how to style it.
37. Eat all the Halloween candy
And feign innocence when your kids accuse you of doing so. Where does your favorite fall in our ranking?
38. Go to an outdoor flea market
You'll need some funky mismatched china to go with your homemade centerpiece, no? Find a nearby market through this handy online directory.
39. Bake cookies
Bonus points for kitschy-and-proud-of-it leaf-shaped cookie cutters. And while the oven’s hot, why not make one of these 50 fall dessert recipes too?
40. Bake an apple galette
41. Bake a pumpkin pie
42. Head outside to stargaze
In our humble opinion, it’s an activity best enjoyed beneath a pile of blankets. And FYI, according to the Farmers’ Almanac, October 2020 will see not one but two full moons—once on October 1 and a “blue moon” on Halloween.
43. Pitch a tent in your backyard
You don’t have to travel far to have your own camping adventure. (Scary stories seem a lot more appealing when you can dash indoors for cover.)
44. Dust your coffee in pumpkin spice
Say it loud, say it proud: You love pumpkin spice. Why not make this the season to embrace it?
45. Binge the new fall lineup (or an old favorite)
Consider this your permission slip for an entire afternoon of Cheers reruns.
46. Get a jump on holiday gifting
It’s truly never too early. May no woman be left panic-shopping on Christmas Eve day.
47. Take a hike
48. Eat soup for lunch
Say “not today, lettuce,” as you make your way through our list of 45 fall soups you haven’t tried (yet).
49. Head to a drive-in movie theater
The retro venues are having a major renaissance and we are here for it. If you can find one that’s screening The Rocky Horror Picture Show, even better.
50. Watch the sunset
Call us a buncha’ saps, but watching the sun sink over an orange tree line makes us all kinds of warm and fuzzy.