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Fall & Winter Vacations in the U.S. & Canada

This week, I'll tell you about some great fall and winter vacations in the U.S. and Canada. Click the links to see applicable itineraries, departure dates and rates.

Our September and October fall foliage tours visit picturesque towns in New England and eastern Canada and travel roadways bordered by spectacular displays of scarlet, purple, gold and orange leaves. Maple sugaring operations, cider mills and cranberry farms make appearances on some of these autumn itineraries. Some fall foliage departures head to national parks in the western U.S.

Several special event tours are lined up for the coming months, giving guests access to the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta in New Mexico, the northern lights in Canada and the Rose Bowl Parade in Southern California. Gate 1 Travel offers November and December trips that highlight Quebec City's Christmas market.

October and November is the time for polar bear tours in Churchill, in Canada's Manitoba province. This is when the bears congregate on the shores of Hudson Bay, waiting for it to freeze over so they can begin their winter hunting.

Certain destinations take on a magical appearance in winter. In the Canadian Rockies, travel past evergreen forests and snowcapped peaks and have opportunities to ride a horse-drawn sleigh or try snowshoeing.

Or take in the quiet beauty of Yellowstone National Park, where Old Faithful sends its steamy plume above the snowy landscape and wolves, bighorn sheep and pronghorn antelope are among the winter residents that you might spot.

Enjoy the sights and sounds of the holidays in Nashville, Gatlinburg and Asheville on Nashville & the Smoky Mountains Holiday, or watch the Rockettes perform their annual "Christmas Spectacular" at Radio City Music Hall during Spotlight on New York City Holiday -- both tours are offered by Collette.

Meanwhile, American Queen Voyages, American Cruise Lines and Viking River Cruises celebrate the season with holiday and New Year's cruises on the Mississippi River and other U.S. waterways.

Or maybe you're thinking of a tropical getaway this fall or winter? Check out our tours in Hawaii.