Asia | Inspiration

6 Asian cities that come alive with culture in September

Recently updated on June 4th, 2024 at 11:33 am

As the summer heat begins to fade, September marks the start of autumn in many parts of Asia. From colorful festivals to cultural events, we gathered some of the best places to travel in September. This month provides a top opportunity to explore Asia and tour some of the most vibrant cities. 

Let’s explore six Asian cities that come alive with culture in September, from Tokyo and Mumbai to Singapore and Hanoi. Each of these destinations offers a unique blend of tradition, modernity, and local charm, making them a must-visit for any cultural enthusiast and food lover. 

Pack your bags and get ready to explore these Asian cities and experience the vibrant culture they have to offer each September.

Tokyo, Japan

In September Tokyo’s foliage begins to turn, providing the perfect autumnal backdrop for outdoor exploring. Stroll through the city’s parks, such as Shinjuku Gyoen or Yoyogi Park, to see the autumn foliage and enjoy a picnic with friends. 

September in Tokyo is an exciting time to explore the city’s unique blend of tradition and modernity. Music lovers can catch the Tokyo Jazz Festival, with performances from both local and international jazz artists. The Tokyo Game Show also falls in September, bringing gaming enthusiasts from all over the world. See the latest releases from popular game companies and get a sneak peek into the future of gaming. 

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Hanoi, Vietnam

Hanoi is one of the best places to travel in September as the streets come alive with events. The Mid-Autumn Festival sees the city adorned with colorful lanterns and mooncakes, and dragon dance performances take place on the streets. Another highlight is the Hanoi Food Festival, a great opportunity to sample authentic Vietnamese cuisine, from street food to fine dining. Explore traditional Vietnamese culture further with performances and workshops during the Hanoi Old Quarter Cultural Exchange Festival.

When you need a break from the buzz of big events, venture through the city’s parks, such as Hoan Kiem Lake and West Lake, to enjoy the pleasant weather and serene atmosphere. With Trafalgar you can weave through the lively Old Quarter by bike, passing colorful shopfronts and street food vendors.

Save even more by booking a September getaway with our Extra Savings in September sale

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Mumbai, India

The elephant-headed god Ganesh is the star of a 10-day festival in Mumbai each September. The Ganesh Chaturthi festival marks the birth of Lord Ganesha, the Hindu god of wisdom and prosperity. Larger than life, loud and high-spirited Mumbai turns it up a notch with colorful decorations, traditional music, and vibrant street processions. Feel the bustling energy that characterizes the city and celebrate the end of the monsoon season with the locals.

Another September highlight is the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, a multi-disciplinary arts festival that showcases the city’s diverse artistic talent. Explore the city’s history and architecture on foot, or visit the city’s beaches, such as Juhu Beach or Marine Drive.

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Beijing, China

Tread in the footsteps of emperors in the UNESCO-listed Forbidden City. Immerse yourself in the ancient rituals, and visit the tranquil Temple of Heaven in Beijing. In September, the hot and humid summer months end, making it pleasant to explore China’s capital. The Mid-Autumn Festival brings colorful lanterns, mooncakes, and dragon dance performances to the street, plus the Beijing International Marathon attracts runners from all over the world. 

Explore traditional Chinese culture or feel the cosmopolitan buzz of Beijing when you visit the Asian city in September. Stroll along the city’s historic streets, such as Nanluoguxiang or Qianmen Street, to experience the city’s unique blend of culture, history, and modernity.

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RELATED BLOG: The 9 best cities to visit in September


While Singapore’s tropical climate keeps the island state sunny and warm throughout the year, September brings slightly cooler temperatures. It’s one of the best places to travel in September as the Mid-Autumn Festival arrives, adorning the streets with colorful lanterns, mooncakes, and dragon dance performances. The Singapore Grand Prix, a high-octane night race, also falls in September. As does the Singapore International Festival of Arts, which presents captivating and diverse works across theatre, music, dance, film and visual arts.

With slightly cooler weather it’s perfect to explore outdoors. Visit the city’s many parks and gardens, such as Gardens by the Bay or the Singapore Botanic Gardens, and soak up Singapore’s vibrant culture, modern architecture, and world-class attractions.

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Phnom Penh, Cambodia

September marks the end of the rainy season, leaving behind a lush green landscape and cooler temperatures. This is an ideal time to explore the city’s many cultural treasures. Each September locals honor the dead with the Pchum Ben Festival, a 15-day celebration. Locals visit pagodas to offer food and prayers to their ancestors. Another September highlight is the Water Festival, a three-day celebration that marks the end of the rainy season, featuring dragon boat races, traditional music, and colorful street parades. 

Beyond cultural events, immerse yourself in the city’s history and architecture at the Royal Palace and National Museum. Choose to take a stroll along the city’s riverside promenade. Or enjoy a sunset cruise on the Mekong River to soak up the city’s charming atmosphere and Cambodian culture.

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