November in Budapest: Weather, What to Pack, and What to See

Budapest Park and Castle
CC BY-NC-SA James Guppy

Visiting Budapest in the fall is a great time to experience the beauty of this European capital, minus the crowds of summer. With more than 100 museums and galleries and easily walkable streets, November proves to be an ideal time to wander the streets.

Budapest's November temperatures don't tend to be as cold as those in other popular Central European destinations, but you'll still want to pack plenty of layers. With an average high of 46 degrees Fahrenheit, you'll want a warm jacket for that trip to the end-of-November Christmas market in Budapest. While Christmas markets are revving up, November in Budapest is home to other celebrations too, including the feast day of St. Martin, held on November 11. Expect many of the city's restaurants to serve duck or goose, paired alongside Hungarian wine.

Here's information for what to do and see and what to pack for a late autumn trip to Budapest, the capital of Hungary.

Budapest Weather in November

Budapest is chilly in November, but not freezing. With enough layers, you can enjoy a brisk walk in the crisp autumn air. Temperatures drop in November, but they will stay above freezing during the day.

  • Average November temperature: 6 C / 43 F
  • November average high: 8 C / 46 F
  • November average low: 3 C / 37 F

It's usually clear in November with an average of eight hours of sunshine. November days have between 8.46 hours (on November 30) and 9.59 hours (on November 1) of daylight. November is much sunnier than the following three winter months. As the month progresses, you'll see more clouds. November is a typical month for rainfall. There's always a chance of rain in Budapest in any month. Look for rain showers and light rain on days when rain is predicted. The total amount of rain in November is, on average, 2.5 inches, spread out across 13 days.

What to Pack

Budapest's November temperatures don't tend to be as cold as those in other popular central European destinations, but you'll still want to pack layers and have a waterproof jacket handy at all times. A warm hat, gloves, and scarf come in handy on the colder days. Since it is usually sunny and bright, a pair of sunglasses and sunscreen for your face will come in handy if you plan to be outdoors for any length of time.

The best way to get to know Budapest is by walking, so a good pair of walking shoes are in order. You'll most likely be on foot from one attraction to the next as Budapest has an excellent public transportation system including the bus, trams, trolleys, and four underground lines.

Budapest is a major city so evening dress comparable to what is worn in most capital cities should suffice for afternoons and evenings in cafes, bars, and restaurants.

Budapest's thermal baths are a draw so you'll need a swimsuit and one of those quick-drying towels. A collapsible travel water bottle always comes in handy.

November Events in Budapest

The outdoor cafes are closed, and you won't see as many people leisurely strolling the avenues, but plenty is happening in Budapest in autumn.

  • November 1 and 2 are All Saints' Day and All Souls Day in Hungary. Those who have passed are honored. Hungarians go to cemeteries with bright yellow chrysanthemums and light red votive candles to decorate the graves of their beloved departed. Sometimes they leave food. You'll see colorful flower vendors lining the streets around cemeteries.
  • The Budapest International Guitar Competition takes place at the beginning of November and is open to guitarists of all levels.
  • November 11 is St. Martin’s Day in Hungary (Márton nap). It's a traditional feast day celebrated by tasting the new wine and eating goose. Throughout November, many restaurants offer special St. Martin’s Day dishes and winemakers provide tastings of their first new wines. At the Hungarian Open Air Museum at the annual St. Martin's Day event you can see rural rituals of St. Martin’s Day, craft-making, folk dance performances. The event features wine-tasting and goose-based cuisine. You can also enjoy the St. Martin’s Day festivities at the annual St. Martin’s Day Festival held at Vajdahunyad Castle.
  • The New Wine and Cheese Festival takes place annually toward the end of November. The entrance fee includes a tasting glass and free admission to the Museum of Hungarian Agriculture, which hosts the event.
  • The Budapest Advent and Christmas Fair on Vörösmarty Square is ranked as one of the top 10 most beautiful markets in Europe. It starts at the end of November.
  • Throughout November, there are art exhibits, music events, museum openings, and entertainment scheduled.

Travel Tips

With the museums, castles, famous bridges and events going on all month, you'll be kept busy on your November trip to Budapest. Here are some tips for your time in this beautiful city.

  • Budapest has excellent shops, so use some of your time to stock up on Christmas gifts from Hungary
  • There's a Buda, and a Pest side of the city as the Danube River cuts right through the middle. Completed in 1849, the chain bridge connecting the two is now considered to be one of the city's significant landmarks. Hilly Buda is more traditional and quaint. The flatter Pest side is more modern.
  • Budapest is known for its coffee house culture. Spend some leisure time in a cafe, which used to be the place to hang out for artists and writers.
  • Go to a "ruin pub." Ruined and abandoned buildings, often in the Jewish area which was ravaged in World War II, are now popular bars and clubs.
  • Take the waters. There are 15 thermal baths and spas. The most famous are Gellert and Széchenyi Thermal Bath.