Where to Travel in November
Whether you crave culture, adventure or just to recharge as a busy year begins to close, November is an ideal time for a getaway. We've put together this list of brilliant suggestions on where to travel in November for you to enjoy; particularly useful if you're eyeing up a last minute break.
All Souls' Day, popularly known as the Day of the Dead, is a bank holiday in Mexico on the 2nd November, to remember deceased relatives and friends. Until recently the day was about quiet family gatherings, and remembering loved ones through culture, spirituality, and celebrations - however in 2016 Mexico had its first All Souls' Day parade. Not to be missed this procession has music, spirit, La Caterina and Sugar Skull themed costume in abundance. Mexico's Day of the Dead is not a day to be scared of, it is a festive occasion with parties, dancing, singing, and even fireworks.
The Thailand Monkey Buffet Festival is just as crazy as it sounds. It's held for the benefit of the monkeys, and it's set up in the province of Lopburi, North of Bangkok. More than 4000 kilos of fruits, cakes, and vegetable candies are placed around temples for the enjoyment of the monkeys that live there. There's over 3,000 of them! The festival has loads of activities for non-monkey visitors too, like live music, and dances by young people dressed like monkeys. Here's a tip though - cover your snacks, because the monkeys aren't shy. They are very used to human presence and won't think twice about climbing on you - or helping themselves to your food.
For a beach holiday in the winter sun there's only one place to go - Tenerife. Most of the holiday scene is in the south, with popular resorts such as Playa de Las Americas and Costa Adeje combining stunning beaches with plenty of activities and a lively nightlife scene. The north is less touristy and for something a little different, we can't recommend it enough. Stay in the capital of Santa Cruz for some culture, sunbathe on our favourite beach at Teresitas or hire a car and venture into the hills to the Mercedes rainforest. Check out our Tenerife Travel Guide for a peek at this beautiful location - and some of our top tips for a brilliant holiday there.
If you're looking for a bucket list adventure then head to New Zealand! November is the last month of spring before the summer hits there, as a result it's ideal for exploring the North and South islands. From bungee jumps, to watersports, or hiking through some of the most beautiful scenery you'll ever experience - New Zealand is perfect for those who love the outdoors. We recommend Soaking up Maori culture and hospitality in Rotorua, exploring the Hobbit Movie set in Matamata, and experiencing some extreme water sports in Queenstown!
Featured in our Costa Del Sol Travel Guide, Malaga was the surprise hit of our time there and is our top pick if you fancy escaping the November weather for a city break in the sun. It's a beautiful location full of art and history, and our favourites places here include the Pablo Picasso museum, Alcazaba Fort and the cathedral. Everything featured in our 22 Amazing Things to Do In The Costa Del Sol video is also within comfortable travel distance of the city. When looking for things to do in Malaga, you really are spoiled for choice.
More Great Places to Visit in November
Still not sure? We recommended some great places to visit in November 2016 too, which would all make fantastic locations for an autumn break this year.
November City Break: Strasbourg, France
Straddling the French and German border, Strasbourg is a beautiful and fascinating place to visit at any time of year, but its twinkling lights and cosy medieval 'gingerbread' houses make for an ideal winter break. Strasbourg's popular Christmas Market gets underway on the 27th, so if you want to be among the first to enjoy the gift shopping opportunities and glasses of gluhwein in this winter wonderland, now is the time to book your trip.
Strasbourg is well equipped for a stimulating winter itinerary, and there's no better time to enjoy the Gothic splendour of the Cathédrale Notre-Dame, the bright lights of the Rhine on one of the many day or night-time cruises, or the warmth and shelter of the Cave des Hospices: a brick wine cellar hidden deep underground beneath the city's old hospital.
Having taken in all that the old town has to offer, you can strike out to the Caracalla baths in Baden Baden, which are only a 40-minute drive away. The famous thermal baths here are particularly welcoming during the colder months, but be sure to pay a visit to the saunas, some of which are outdoor, and all of which welcome nude bathing - you have been warned!
November Sun: Gran Canaria
Blue skies, sandy beaches and warm summer sun can seem like flashbacks to another life at this time of year, but thanks to the the proximity of the Canary Islands, these prospects are well within reach. The more southerly parts of the Canary Islands, including Tenerife and Gran Canaria are good bets for warm weather, and you'll expect to see temperatures up to the mid-20s on a November holiday on either Island.
For a particularly warm welcome, we recommend Maspalomas on the South coast of Gran Canaria, which is sheltered by dramatic dunes and benefits from its position off the coast of the Western Sahara desert. This is also a great time of year to go stargazing, and visitors can book tours to the observatory to witness the amazing celestial views in the clear, unpolluted sky.
Early Snow: Zermatt, Switzerland
While peak skiing season doesn't get under way until the new year, those who can't wait to hit the slopes can still get their snow fix in many resorts around the world - several of them within easy reach in Europe. Switzerland's Zermatt is a safe bet for snow, being one of a few resorts that welcomes skiers all year round. For this reason it's also popular during the Christmas period, and its position beneath the iconic Matterhorn peak makes for a particularly scenic festive backdrop.
Zermatt offers a wide range of accommodation from luxury hotels to cosy chalets, and as well as skiing, visitors can enjoy its ice-skating and climbing facilities. It also has a vertiginous 3899m ski lift, which offers remarkable views.
Winter weekend: UK spa breaks
November is a time when many of us start to feel a bit lacklustre and de-energised, as shorter nights start to draw in. If you haven't got the budget or holiday allowance to jet off somewhere sunny towards the end of the year, taking a spa break closer to home can work wonders. The seemingly unlikely location of Frinton-on-Sea is home to one of the UK's best-loved spa escapes: The Lifehouse hotel and spa, which is set in 12-acre historic gardens, and is less than a two hour drive from London.
This upscale retreat offers an extensive range of pampering treatments alongside its fully-equipped spa and gymnasium, and there are several specially-themed winter packages on offer starting in November. Late booking can often work out well at this and many of the larger spas, so keep an eye out booking sites for last-minute deals, and check out the hotel's latest offers page for a taste of what's available in autumn and winter. Other spas offering popular packages to help stressed-out guests unwind and shake off the winter blues include the beautiful Carey's Manor and SenSpa near the New Forest, and The Scarlet: a luxury eco-hotel overlooking the wilds of the Cornish coast. The Winter Wind Down and Warm Up is a treat to consider if you're feeling the chill.