Come September, summer is drawing to a close. Resorts are quieter, temperatures are often cooler and, in some destinations, prices begin to fall. If this all sounds tempting, then now is the time to plan a September holiday. If you go south of the equator, you'll find that spring is blooming, while destinations such as Tuscany and California still deliver a boost of Vitamin D to prepare you for winter. Unsure of where to go? We've gathered together a few ideas for your September holidays.
In Malta's capital, colours of 16th-century Italy, colonial Britain and the Mediterranean fuse together. Visit imposing fortresses, discover prehistoric sites at the Hal Saflieni Hypogeum, or appreciate culture at the Royal Opera House or Grand Master's Palace. September temperatures are perfect for exploring Valletta. It's also the month of the International Air Show and the Maletese folk music festival, L-Ghanja tal-Poplu.
Miami is home to possibly the world's greatest collection of Art Deco architecture, delivering a colourful backdrop to the city's beaches. September is towards the end of hurricane season so it's a great time to pick up holiday bargains. The temperature is perfect for both the beach and sightseeing.
Like most Greek Islands, Crete is a magical place to visit in September. Temperatures are just right for lazy beach days or exploring tourist attractions - such as the magnificent ruins of Knossos Palace or the poignant history of Spinalonga Island. It's also a great time for hiking, swimming, visiting wineries or sampling the local food.
Portugal's southern coastline is one of Europe's most popular destinations for swimming, sunbathing and surfing. While the mid-summer months can be extremely hot, temperatures in September are more comfortable and towns become less crowded after the school holidays. Visitors to Albufeira can enjoy the Fisherman's Festival, with traditional celebrations, music and seafood.
If you're looking for a luxurious all-inclusive holiday or the perfect honeymoon destination, then the paradise of Bali delivers everything you want. The countryside is dramatic with magnificent waterfalls such as Banyu Wana Amertha. By September, the weather is less humid and the summer crowds have gone, leaving the perfect conditions for both beach activities and island exploring.
The cooler, drier months are the perfect time to visit the enchanting city of Zanzibar, off the coast of Tanzania. The UNESCO-listed Stone Town brings together many cultures - Persian, Arabic, Indian and European. With fewer tourists around, September is a good time to enjoy a guided tour of its alleys and markets.
Tirana is a city in constant change, moving rapidly into the modern world. This gives the Albanian capital a vibrancy that makes it a fascinating city break destination. Shop, dine and drink on the trendy streets of Blloku and visit cultural attractions such as Petrela Castle and the Natural History Museum. September's cool, fresh temperatures are just right for sightseeing.
Tuscany has been seducing visitors for centuries with its landscape, culture and cuisine. Soak up the art in Florence's Uffizi Gallery or meander through rolling countryside stopping off at vineyards to sample local wines. September's weather is ideal for city sightseeing, country hiking, or simply relaxing under the Tuscan sun.
Bohemian quarters, high-fashion shopping and the vibrant sights and sounds of tango all epitomise Buenos Aires, Argentina's historic capital. With winter turning to spring, temperatures in September are warm enough to drink and dine al fresco. It's also the start of the polo season.
September in San Francisco is typically warm and dry with long days of sunshine, just perfect for the beach or strolling through the vineyards of nearby Napa and Sonoma. One of the most iconic sights of San Francisco must be the Golden Gate Bridge. You should also find time to step into the warmth of the rainforest dome at the California Academy of Science.