Wondering what are the best places to visit in November? November often gets overlooked when it comes to travel. Yet, with no school holidays on the calendar, many hotels and airlines offer tempting discounts in what is considered a quiet window ahead of the Christmas rush. November is a brilliant time to travel abroad because of the beautiful foliage, fewer crowds and exciting Autumn cultural activities. November doesn’t have to be about ruby leaves and melancholic rainy days spent in a Parisienne cafe but can mean an escape to a warm destination like Hong Kong, Thailand or postcard-perfect Seychelles. You can book your travel in advance or opt-in for last-minute holidays which tend to offer brilliant discounts.
Here are ten wonderful destinations that will tempt you to travel this November.
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The Garden Route, South Africa
Stretching 200km along the eastern coast, from Mossel Bay to Storms River, the Garden Route is an epic trailer of South Africa’s highlights and is high on the must-see lists of most visitors to the country. Summer may be too hot to enjoy everything this region has to offer, but the pleasant temperatures (mid-20s) and the gentle breeze of November bring new opportunities for hiking, biking and kayaking.
Standing between the towering twelve apostles mountain range and the beautiful coastline, it’s easy to see why Cape Town is often a visitors first port of call. Take the cable car to the top of Table Mountain and stroll the lively V&A Waterfront, before grabbing a sundowner in Camps Bay. A scenic drive south brings you to the rolling hills of Franschhoek, home to some of South Africa’s finest wineries. Make your way southeast to join the dramatic coastline, dotted with seaside towns, nature reserves and even a monkey sanctuary. Knysna, Plettenberg Bay and Tsitsikamma National Park should all make it on to your road trip itinerary.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
November is by far the best month to visit Argentina. Spring is in full swing, temperatures fluctuate between 20 and 25 degrees, and jacaranda trees show off their gorgeous purple blooms all over the city.
Blending European elegance and Latin flair, Argentina’s cultural capital is home to stunning colonial architecture, a lively cafe culture, tango, and of course, more parrillas (steakhouses) than you can possibly imagine. In a single trip, it’s near impossible to experience everything this sassy city has to offer.
Much of Buenos Aires is walkable, so slip on a pair of comfy shoes and explore the city’s eclectic ensemble of neighbourhoods, each offering something unique. With the colourfully painted houses of El Caminito, traditional tango clubs and BA’s Bombonera football stadium, La Boca is a good place to start. Next, head to Cementerio de la Recoleta, an enormous cemetery packed full of elaborately carved scroll-work, miniature Baroque cathedrals and stately pillars. If modern art is more your thing, MALBA has an impressive collection of contemporary exhibitions. Other must-dos include sniffing out a bargain in San Telmo’s antique market, dancing the night away at one of the cities many milongas (dance events) and savour a delicious steak dinner washed down with a glass of red wine.
November marks the end of spring in New Zealand and generally brings warm and dry weather. Despite the great weather, it’s a relatively quiet month for tourists, which means you can take advantage of low-season airfares and hotels rates. With longer days and temperatures averaging in the high 20s, it’s the perfect month for hiking, biking, fishing, and exploring one of New Zealand’s 13 national parks. Abel Tasman might be New Zealand’s smallest national park, but it’s golden beaches, sculptured granite cliffs and its world-famous coast track, makes it one of the country’s most popular spots.
If gastronomy and vineyard tours are high on your agenda, New Zealand won’t disappoint. Blessed with fertile soils and temperate climate, Hawke’s Bay, in the North Island, is among New Zealand’s leading producers of wine. The time it right and you could find yourself in the middle of the Hawke’s Bay Food and Wine Classic. For those who prefer a chilled brew to a bottle of wine, head to Wellington, where you can follow the city’s craft beer trail and soak up the coffee culture. Read how to prepare for a trip to New Zealand.
Tenerife, Canary Islands
The secret to a warm European getaway in November? Head South. While cities like London, Paris and Berlin are layering up for winter, the Canary Islands basks in a comfortable 22°C thanks to the region’s subtropical climate. Tenerife, the largest island of the archipelago, is famed for the beach hotels of the Costa Adeje and Playa de las Américas. As well as year-round, sun-soaked beaches, it also boasts Spain’s highest mountain, Mount Teide, which rises up from Teide National Park. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007, the park is considered one of the best locations in the world for stargazing.
If you’re an outdoorsy type, Anaga Rural Park, tucked away in the Anaga mountain range, has a network of hiking and walking trails. Wildlife lovers also have plenty to look forward to. The south coast of Tenerife is one of the best places in Europe to witness Pilot whales and bottlenose dolphins in their natural environment, year-round. But visit in November and you’ll also have the chance to spot humpback whales, fin whales and sometimes even blue whales.
Back on dry land, Tenerife’s second UNESCO site, La Laguna, beautifully captures a snapshot of Tenerife’s past, while laid-back Santa Cruz has reinvented itself as a hotspot for foodies and creatives alike.
Hong Kong, Asia
November in Hong Kong brings low humidity, plenty of sun and near-perfect temperatures, averaging around 22°C. The city welcomes visitors with towering skyscrapers and a kind of energy that excites even the most seasoned travellers. Hong Kong is split into two major areas – Hong Kong Island in the south, and the Kowloon Peninsula up north – with Victoria Harbour separating the two. To get your bearings, take the Peak Tram to Hong Kong Island’s highest point, Victoria Peak. At the top, the Peak Circle Walk is an easy 2-mile trail that loops around Victoria Peak. For a different view of the city, book a harbour tour on a traditional junk boat – once used for fishing and ocean exploration. Every night, the Symphony of Lights show sets Victoria Harbour ablaze.
Tian Tan Buddha is the largest outdoor Buddha in the world and is easily Hong Kong’s most recognisable attraction. Ngong Ping cable car provides a leisurely and scenic alternative for those who don’t fancy climbing the 268 steps up to the statue. And don’t even think about leaving Hong Kong without chowing down some delicious dim sim. Tim Ho Wan, Yan Toh Heen and Mott 32 are just a few great dim sim spots in the city.
West Coast Island Hopping, Thailand
The month of November, which falls just after the rainy season, and right before peak season, is a great time to visit Thailand’s west coast. While monsoon season continues until December on the east coast, the weather on the Andaman coast is characterized by clear skies, a gentle breeze and cooler temperatures of around 23°C to 30°C.
Khao Lak may just be an hour’s drive north of bustling Phuket, but the beautiful beaches that hug Phang-Nga’s coastline, feel like a different world entirely. Its enviable location makes it a great base to explore the nearby Similan Islands – a divers’ paradise teeming with rich marine life.
The scenery becomes even more stunning as you head south, where you’ll arrive at Khao Sok National Park – a landscape of lush jungle and enormous limestone peaks, with a deep blue lake at its centre. For something extra special, check into Elephant Hills, a unique tented camp and elephant sanctuary. When you’re ready to relax, head to the coral-fringed beaches of Krabi, where you can spend your days sipping cocktails by the pool, savouring seafood dinners or indulging in a traditional Thai massage.
Lying just off the east coast of Africa, surrounded by warm waters, Seychelles epitomises the expression “tropical island paradise.” On the list as one of the world’s most exclusive destinations, this enchanting archipelago attracts visitors with its white-sand beaches, natural beauty, rare wildlife and laid-back, island living. The islands are sun-kissed year-round thanks to their location just south of the equator, but perhaps the best time to visit is in late autumn when there are fewer crowds and visitors can benefit from shoulder-season hotel rates. Although you’re likely to encounter some short showers in November, you can still bank on plenty of beach weather, with highs of around 30°C. and make sure to add La Digue to your list, as it's home to some of the best beaches in the world.
Seychelles boasts some of the greatest diving and snorkelling in the world, with a whole rainbow of marine life waiting to be discovered beneath the surface. April/May and October/November offer the best visibility when the waters are calmer. The most popular dive spots are located close to the three main inner islands – Mahé, Praslin and La Digue – and include the Twin Barges, The Dredger, L’ilot, Baie Ternay Marine Park and Chuckles Rock.
Seychelles also serves up some of the world’s best beaches. While Anse Intendance and Petite Anse are strong contenders for the title, nothing can quite compare to Anse Source d’Argent. Its boulder-strewn sands are lapped by shallow emerald waters and shaded by swaying coconut palms.
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Abu Dhabi often gets overlooked in favour of the UAE’s crown jewel, Dubai, but the charming capital is equally as appealing. And in November, the sweltering summer is starting to subside and temperatures rest comfortably in the mid-20s and low 30s – ideal for exploring the Emirate’s attractions or lazing by the pool with a good book.
The modern shopping malls, world-famous Ferrari World and Yas Water World are usually high on a visitor to Abu Dhabi’s list. The city’s culture is firmly rooted in Arabia’s Islamic traditions and architecture. Perhaps the most striking example of Islamic architecture is the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque – one of only two mosques in the country to offer entry to non-muslims. Although the city is constantly evolving, remnants of Abu Dhabi’s heritage can be found at the Heritage Village, a model of a traditional Emirati settlement complete with Bedouin tents and wooden houses.
While Abu Dhabi might conjure up images of a glittering concrete jungle, it’s also home to a range of natural attractions, from breathtaking desert to mangrove forests. Adventurous types can tackle the towering dunes of the Empty Quarter, the world’s largest uninterrupted sand desert, while wildlife lovers can head to Al Wathba Wetland Reserve. Though not entirely natural, the gorgeous greenery on show at Al Ain Oasis, the UAE’s first-ever UNESCO site, is also well worth a visit.
The Golden Triangle, India
In northern India, the relentless summer heat lingers until October, when the monsoon ends and temperatures drop to around 30°C – ideal for exploring the region's forts and palaces.
The Golden Triangle is one of the country’s most popular tourist circuits and is a classic introduction for first-time visitors to India. Combining three of the country’s most visited cities – Delhi, Agra and Jaipur – the triangle has been coined “golden” for the extraordinary cultural and historical wealth evident in each of the three cities. The tours usually start in Delhi, moving south to the site of the Taj Mahal at Agra, then west, to the desert landscapes of Rajasthan.
India’s populous capital, Delhi, might have a reputation for being overwhelming but it’s quickly countered with its delicious street food, fascinating museums, historical monuments, including the Red Fort, and its love for cricket. When the pace gets too much, retreat to the serenity of Lodi Garden – a 90-acre oasis in the heart of the city.
Further south, Agra’s majestic crown jewel needs no introduction. Widely considered one of the most romantic monuments in the world, the Taj Mahal is best visited at sunrise or sunset.
Affectionately known as the “Pink City,” Jaipur, is the gateway to India’s most colourful state, Rajasthan, and an intoxicating blend of old and new. Highlights here include the grand City Palace, the bazaars in the Old City and Hawa Mahal, an extraordinary pink-painted palace and Jaipur’s most distinctive landmark.
Santa Monica, California
Sunny SoCal is beautiful year-round, but the mild temperatures of November and the plethora of outdoor activities, make it a great choice for travellers looking for more than just a fly and flop destination.
Surrounded by mountains on one side and the beach on the other, this seaside city paints the classic picture of Southern California. After you’ve picked up a healthy smoothie or matcha latte (iced, of course), make your way down to the world-famous Santa Monica pier, home to the iconic Ferris wheel and the Pacific Park amusement arcades. No place oozes that hang-10 beach vibe more than Santa Monica. Just left of the pier, you’ll find the original muscle beach, not to be confused with its smaller Venice counterpart. On weekends, it’s a hangout for fitness fiends tackling the tight rope or swinging ring to ring. Keep strolling along the boardwalk to Venice and you’ll spot tanned locals surfing, skateboarding or playing volleyball.
Just 2 miles north, Santa Monica’s edgy neighbour, Venice, has become a hip hangout for artists, creatives and bohemians, thanks to its fabulous food scene, independent galleries and stylish boutiques. Abbot Kinney Blvd and Rose Avenue are Venice’s foodie neighbourhoods, with Rose Cafe, the Butcher’s Daughter and Gjelina, all making the shortlist.