Plan Ahead, Part 3: Treat Your Five Senses to a Fabulous Fall Trip

As you plan your fall getaway, think beyond great sites and choose spots that appeal to all five of your senses.

Spices at a market in Morocco. Photo courtesy of Butterfield & Robinson.

Use fall as a time to renew your spirit by indulging yourself, not just in a scenic landscape but in a sensual journey. Taste spices and learn how these flavors enhance Moroccan meals; find out how to capture splendid images of New Mexico’s southwest, and follow a 1,200-year-old pilgrimage path in Japan to ancient temples.

>>>More: Plan Ahead for Fall, Part 2: Great Family Getaways

Plan Ahead: Fall Fun in the Mountains

Culinary Journey in Morocco

In partnership with Saveur magazine, Butterfield & Robinson reveals Moroccan culture through its food. Meander through souks where merchants display paprika, cinnamon, cumin, and other spices in pyramids of red, orange, and olive. Select greens and mint from an eco-farm as part of your hands-on cooking class where you learn to prepare a Moroccan dish. The trip starts in Marrakech, then goes to Essaouria where you browse the seafood markets, select items for your meal, and sample a waterfront restaurant. In the Agafay Desert dine under the stars in Berber fashion. 7 days/6 nights, from $5,995 per person, October 29 to November 4, as well as private departures.

Photography Workshops in New Mexico

Ted Turner Expeditions, the new eco-adventure company launched by the business mogul, invites the public to experience his scenic ranches in New Mexico on photography workshops. Not only do you get an eyeful of how the 1% lives— in this case on more than a half-million acres of semi-desert and mountains—you also learn how to capture images of this natural setting. Photographer Jerry Courvoisier leads the group, limited to eight people, into the landscape, providing guidance on shooting techniques. In the afternoon, Courvoisier offers pointers on processing techniques. The workshops don’t just target advanced photographers with serious experience and expensive gear. People who use point-and-shoot cameras and iPhones are welcome too.

Guests lodge at the Sierra Grande Lodge & Spa, but photograph the scenery and wildlife at Turner’s Ladder and Armendaris ranches. All the properties are located in or near Truth or Consequences, NM. The 4 day/3 night workshops are available October 11 to 14; 18 to 21; November 17 to 20. $2,125.00, including daily breakfast, two dinners, lodging and photography workshop. Contact Jerry Courvoisier,

Shikoku Island in fall.

Hiking Journey to Japan’s Temples

On Japan’s Shikoku Island, the ancient pilgrimage route leads to 88 temples. Wilderness Travel’s Hiker’s Journey to Shikoku takes you through picturesque valleys and to mountains to visit some of the region’s most scenic temples and shrines. Along the way, soak in centuries-old hot springs, visit the Matsuyama-jo castle, and meet other pilgrims and hikers. The October trip takes advantage of the “kouyou”, or mild weather, a time in fall when the maple trees turn red and the ginkos morph to a pale yellow. 11 days/10 nights, October 16 to 26, from $6,695 per person.

What are your favorite sensual experiences while traveling? Share your thoughts with me on Twitter, @familyitrips.