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

Castelvetro, Modena. Vineyards in autumn
Francesco Riccardo Iacomino / Getty Images

If you're thinking about a Eurotrip in November, it's one of the most affordable times to travel around the continent. It's the low season for tourism and everything is cheaper from flights to hotel rooms and even train tickets. Plus, cities that are inundated with tourists in the busy summer months or for the holidays feel deserted by comparison, meaning easier access to the most popular attractions without long lines or suffocating crowds.

One significant concern about visiting in November is the weather, when the final days of fall are fully transforming into full-blown winter. Temperatures range drastically across the region, but you should be prepared for chilly—even frigid—days regardless of what countries you visit.

Weather, events and what to pack for November in Europe
TripSavvy / Ashley Nicole DeLeon

Europe Weather in November

The weather in November changes depending on which European country and region you're visiting—a November trip to Sweden is much different from a November trip to a Greek island. The countries of Northern and Eastern Europe may experience freezing temperatures and even snowfall in November, while those in Southern Europe will be cold, but not freezing cold. If wintry holiday markets sound like an ideal vacation, then focus your trip around Germany, Scandinavia, France, the Netherlands, or other nearby countries. If you want to avoid the most extreme cold, then head to countries like Portugal, Spain, Italy, or Greece.

  Average High Temp. Average Low Temp. Average Precipitation Average Days of Rain
London, U.K. 53 F (12 C) 44 F (7 C) 2.3 inches 11 days
Paris, France 51 F (11 C) 41 F (5 C) 2.0 inches 10 days
Berlin, Germany 45 F (7 C) 36 F (2 C) 1.7 inches 10 days
Amsterdam, Netherlands 48 F (9 C) 40 F (4 C) 3.4 inches 13 days
Prague, Czech Republic 44  F (7 C) 35 F (2 C) 1.3 inches 7 days
Barcelona, Spain 62 F (17 C) 48 F (9 C) 2.3 inches 5 days
Lisbon, Portugal 64 F (18 C) 53 F (12 C) 4.2 inches 9 days
Rome, Italy 61 F (16 C) 46 F (8 C) 4.3 inches 9 days
Athens, Greece 64 F (18 C)  51 F (11 C) 2.2 inches 5 days

For even more temperate weather, head to the southern coasts of Europe's southern countries, such as Andalusia, Spain, or the Algarve in Portugal, where the average high is 67 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius). It may not be beach weather in November, but you'll find the days to be relatively warm and off-season deals to boot (although if beach weather is what you're looking for, you could always head to the Spanish Canary Islands).

November tends to be a rainy month across the continent, although the amount and duration of rainfall varies based on the region. In notoriously wet countries like the U.K. and the Netherlands, rain is light but almost an everyday occurrence, whereas Spain or Portugal tend to have sunny weather overall with rare bursts of rainstorms. You aren't likely to experience snowfall in November, but it's definitely a possibility in the northern countries, especially in the latter part of the month. Be sure to check forecasts leading up to your trip in case you need to pack snow gear.

What to Pack

How to pack your suitcase really comes down to what countries you'll be visiting, and you'll need to pack a lot more heavy layers if you're visiting the chilly northern countries. On the other hand, if you're heading to the Canary Islands you'll need bathing suits and beachwear.

In general, you'll need to pack layers regardless of where you go. Bring jackets and sweaters that are comfortable for walking around outside but easy to take off when you enter museums, restaurants, or other attractions. You should bring at least one heavy coat and a water-resistant jacket you can throw on in case it rains. If your trip includes colder regions, pack a scarf, gloves, and a warm hat.

November Events in Europe

Even though the end-of-summer festivals have officially come to end, Europeans stave off the cold weather with a full agenda of cultural events throughout November. From jazz festivals to historical celebrations, you can find unique happenings across the entire continent throughout the month.

  • All Saints' Day: The Christian holiday of All Saints' Day is celebrated on November 1 in almost every country of Europe. Traditionally, it's a time when families visit cemeteries and clean the tombstones of deceased relatives. It's a holiday in most countries and accommodations usually book up quickly as people take advantage of the long weekend to travel around.
  • Jazz Festivals: Fans of this classic genre have not one or two but four opportunities to catch some of the biggest jazz festivals in Europe. Jazz festivals take place throughout November in Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, and Berlin, so you can pick one to enjoy or hop around to visit multiple festivals.
  • Bonfire Night (U.K.): Bonfire Night, also known as Guy Fawkes Night, is celebrated on November 5 across the U.K., recalling the famous refrain, "Remember, remember the fifth of November." It's not an official bank holiday, but local bonfires and even firework shows are common throughout the country, so ask about what's happening in the city you'll be visiting.
  • Truffle Festivals (Italy): November is the season of mushrooms and no mushroom is more valued than the truffle. Across Italy, truffle festivals take place throughout the month, perhaps the most famous being the Alba White Truffle Fair in the region of Piedmont, about 30 miles outside of Turin. Get your fill of these cherished mushrooms while you can.
  • The Arrival of Sinterklaas (Netherlands): In mid-November, the Dutch Santa Clause, Sinterklaas, stops in Amsterdam with lots of fanfare. He's welcomed with a massive parade through the city center, officially kicking off the holiday season. His yearly arrival is scheduled for November 15, 2020, so don't miss out on this delightful Dutch tradition

November Travel Tips

  • Virtually every major European city has a reliable public transport system, so brush up on how to navigate around your destination before arrival so inclement weather doesn't affect your trip.
  • In November, Christmas markets begin to pop up in major cities and small towns all over the continent. The most quintessential markets are found in Germany and France, but you can find them in almost every country.
  • Be sure to confirm that your accommodations have heating, especially if you're booking an Airbnb. Some apartments, especially in older buildings, may not have that included.
  • Apart from the holiday weekend on November 1, airlines often offer insanely cheap deals for flights around Europe to attract travelers during the low-season. If you're thinking of a cross-country Eurotrip, November is one of the most affordable times to do it.
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