By: Mark Ellwood | From: Afar

Ah, October. The Goldilocks time to travel, when everything’s just right. Weather, crowds, and prices are all moderate, and the only thing over the top is the schedule of events and festivals.

We’ve scoured the world for the best this month, whether you want to chop your way through the home of karate, immerse yourself in an alternative Day of the Dead, or even tackle some hikes in an unexpected European mountain range. Here are 10 top places to travel in October.

2. San Antonio, Texas

October is great for . . . celebrating border culture, both haunted and hungry.

Don’t assume you need to cross the border to immerse yourself in a swirling, impactful celebration of Dia de los Muertos—the largest such gathering stateside is right here, a nod to San Antonio’s close cultural and geographical connections to Mexico.

For two days, October 28–29, expect the city to celebrate the afterlife via a special Day of the Dead river parade and the usual trappings of a citywide festival—think live music and entertainment, food and craft stalls plus a huge, open altar exhibition. Expect bunches of marigolds (cempasúchil), paper cutouts, and the chance to nibble on pan de muerto.

The Tasting Texas Wine & Food Festival coincides with this celebration, running on Maverick Plaza from October 26 to 29, which includes special dinners at restaurants around the city as well as stand-alone events like Southern Hospitality, a chance to graze buffet-style on the best the city’s chefs have to offer.

Where to stay: Thompson Riverwalk

The two-year-old, 162-room hotel, housed in a 20-story building right above the River Walk in the emerging Arts District has two noteworthy F&B spots—a swanky restaurant by local chef, and James Beard finalist, Steve McHugh, and a casual rooftop restaurant for maximum views, the Moon’s Daughters.

How to get to San Antonio

There’s direct service from the West Coast on AA, Delta, and Southwest, or try JetBlue or United from the Tri-State area.