While some warmth may linger, autumn has already arrived in the mountains. Weather is unpredictable, but often a week or so of 'Indian summer' in late September provides excellent hiking potential.

Cows' Ball in Bohinj

On a mid-September weekend, the residents of Bohinj, Slovenia, mark the return of their cows from high pastures to the valleys by parading wreath-laden bovines through town. Food and folk music are part of the fun that culminates in a town dance.

Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany

Six million people guzzle 5 million litres of beer and 400,000 sausages each year at what may be one of the biggest festivals in the world. But don't show up in October, the carousing takes place on the last 15 days in September.

Mushroom Picking

Locals know that September is prime time for picking mushrooms in the hilly forests of Central Europe. Go with a local or a reliable field guide – the prettiest specimens are often the most poisonous.