The fall can offer travelers an excellent opportunity to explore destinations in and beyond the United States. From beaches to the mountains, the month of November, in particular, can be a great time to enjoy some time away. If you find yourself interested in exploring new areas in late autumn, read on to discover some incredible places that can offer rewarding trips at this time of year.
1. Lisbon, Portugal
Thanks to its coastal location at the mouth of the Tagus River, Lisbon offers a pleasant climate, making it an ideal place to visit later in the year. Those interested in a break from chilly temperatures will appreciate the mild, 60-degree days. The city also offers some astounding architecture, amazing music, and beautiful views.
Foodies will delight in the delectable courses offered, including fresh seafood and pastries that are enough to whet any appetite. Visit the numerous cafes or venture to restaurants to see all the city has on offer.
If you want a bit of history, you can also venture to the historic district to view the castle, Castelo de São Jorge, which is one of the oldest edifices in the city. Its name is in honor of Saint George, the patron Saint of England. What’s with the cultural exchange? When the keep (initially occupied by the Moors) was taken by the first king of Portugal, Afonso Henriques, in 1147, during the Crusades, he received assistance from English knights — the name was appointed in their honor. As you can probably tell, there’s plenty of history here to discover!
We recommend Lisbon for those who:
- Need a break from the weather
- Love exploring new cities and urban environments
- Want a vacation that lets them explore new tastes and scenery
2. Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Playa del Carmen is a wonderful destination for people with a variety of interests. First, the weather makes it feel like summer nearly year-round — a great escape from the cool November temperatures back home. Temperatures in November typically average around the mid-80s, with only a few days of rain during the month.
Additionally, the stunning white-sand beaches provide a chance to spruce up any fading summer tans while rekindling those long-lost feelings intrinsic to summer relaxation. Then, venture into the warm water for swimming and snorkeling. Delicious food will only make the trip even more memorable!
History lovers will also appreciate Mayan ruins like Chichen Itza nearby and other fantastic glimpses into the history of the Yucatan Peninsula. Few other places can offer such a rare combination of relaxation and ancient history in one location.
We recommend Playa del Carmen for:
- Beach lovers
- Those already missing the summer
- Those who love exploring entirely new environments
3. Palm Springs, California
Palm Springs offers something for nearly everyone. The comfortable weather in the 70s makes it easy to get out and enjoy the great outdoors, and there’s plenty to see and do in the area. With mountains and canyons for exploring and hiking, you’ll be amazed at all the beautiful landscapes to explore.
Take a hike up to see the views from the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto mountains, or go bird-watching at Big Morongo Canyon Preserve. Additionally, the city is known for its bike trails for those who enjoy bringing (or renting) bikes on vacation. Local waterways even offer some opportunities for kayaking and canoeing.
If you want to take a break from the outdoors, you’ll appreciate the different museums in the area, such as the Palm Springs Art Museum. Numerous art galleries can also be found throughout the city, including the Elena Bulatova Fine Art Gallery and the Artize Gallery.
We recommend Palm Springs for:
- Art lovers
- Outdoor lovers
- Those interested in a vacation of mild temperatures and fall days full of exploring
4. Havana, Cuba
Havana, Cuba is an interesting destination to put on your bucket list. Travel restrictions remain in place in a variety of situations. However, Americans can venture to the island for reasons as varied as educational programs, providing support for the Cuban people, or humanitarian projects.
If you get the opportunity to travel to Cuba you’ll be in for a true feast of the senses. Visitors can immerse themselves in a unique culture full of delicious food, incredible history, and plenty to explore. You can visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Old Havana or Castillo de los Tres Reyes del Morro (El Morro), which was built to guard against pirate attacks. The island ocean also has warm temperatures throughout November, with highs generally in the mid-80s, making the late fall a great time to come and visit.
We recommend Havana for:
- Island lovers
- Those who love exploring new cultures and places
5. Grand Canyon National Park
Those looking for a great getaway before Christmas can also consider taking a road trip to the Grand Canyon or another U.S. National Park. In this case, venturing to Arizona will reward you with a view like nothing else in the United States and maybe even the world.
November is an ideal time to explore hiking trails while enjoying the magnificent colors of the fall foliage of nearly any national park. Since the height of the tourist season has passed, you can see the natural beauty of North America without having to share popular trails. Consider renting an RV and unplug from the world while you lounge beside some majestic views. In fact, all the ample opportunities for some out-of-this-world stargazing can make this adventure worth it.
We recommend the Grand Canyon for:
- Outdoor lovers
- Hikers, bikers, and campers
- Those who want to appreciate November in all its beauty
6. Maui, Hawaii
While the Hawaiian Islands offer a little slice of paradise, the island of Maui in particular provides a lush escape for those looking for a little rest and reprieve during late autumn. The island boasts a warm average temperature year-round, with November temperatures typically in the low 80s, so you can absolutely still enjoy the beaches.
The tropical island culture and abundant hiking opportunities to waterfalls and volcanic peaks will keep the trip exciting for all explorers. Visit one of the world’s largest dormant volcano craters at Haleakalā National Park, hike the Pipiwai Trail, or swim at black-sand beaches (yes, they’re a thing) at Wai’ānapanapa State Park.
We recommend Maui for:
- Beach lovers missing the summer
- Those who want an outdoor adventure
- Travelers who need a little R&R as the year draws to a close
7. Crete, Greece
The largest and most populous of the Greek islands, Crete, has been home to some of the greatest ancient civilizations the world has ever known. See ruins from the Minoans, some of which date back to 1100 BC. And while there is no surviving labyrinth from the Theseus and Minotaur myth per se, you can visit the Palace of Knossos, on the north coast of Crete. It’s speculated that the labyrinth from legend was situated in the bowels of the keep. The Heraklion Archaeological Museum also houses numerous pieces of history, allowing you to delve deeper into the gods, monsters, and heroes of antiquity.
Of course, take some time to appreciate the beautiful beaches that line the island and hike the stunning geography, such as Samariá Gorge. Lake Voulismeni also provides a beautiful landscape that will leave you wishing you never had to leave.
We recommend Crete for:
- History lovers
- Beach lovers
8. Mallorca, Spain
Mallorca, an island off the coast of Spain, might just be the perfect vacation spot for you. In November, you might not get swimming weather, but the temperatures are still pleasant — around the low 60s and upper 50s — allowing you to spend ample time outdoors. You can also venture down to the beaches to enjoy the incredible views and play in the sand.
Opportunities for enjoyment are endless. There are numerous festivals held throughout the fall. Seize opportunities for exploring local wineries and trying popular street food. (Consider trying the winery Oliver Moragues, which is one of the oldest wineries in the region and grows local, traditional grapes.) Experience the golf courses, tour museums, and visit galleries. You can also see the area by hiking and taking in some of the breathtaking views the island has to offer.
We recommend Mallorca for:
- Those who want to uncover a hidden gem
- Adventurers who love exploring new cultures
- Vacationers who want to enjoy the culture and the great outdoors while traveling
Why November Is a Great Time to Travel
When people think of travel season, November might not be the first month to come to mind. The summer holidays have ended, leaving behind memories of beaches and pools and the relaxed atmosphere of the warmer months. At the same time, the winter holidays aren’t yet in full swing, with the appeal of crisp, white snow, ski resorts, Christmas markets, and winter adventures on the horizon.
However, flexible jet setters shouldn’t discount November — especially early November, which is sometimes considered the off-season. Popular travel destinations are typically less crowded or can offer greater deals on attractions. This means you may find it easier to enjoy some sightseeing and hitting all the hot spots listed in your travel guide.
And if you want to venture to places like Florida and the Gulf Coast states that endure hurricanes, you’ll be happy to know that November falls at the tail end of the hurricane season. A trip to Florida or the Caribbean in November means you’re less likely to experience severe weather.
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