Visiting Paris in November: A Complete Guide

  • 01 of 04

    Getting Cozy and Contemplative

    Paris in November can be incredibly tranquil.
    ••• Paris in November can be incredibly tranquil. Marcaux/Photographer's Choice RF/Getty Images

    Paris in November is generally quiet and contemplative. As the days grow ever shorter and the mercury starts to drop, tourist numbers dwindle, and the city feels placid and a bit sleepy at times. High season this is not.

    Visiting the city of light in November can be a great time to focus on indoor sights and attractions, such as admiring collections in Paris's many extraordinary museums, discovering charming little arthouse movie theaters, observing breathtaking details in Paris churches and cathedrals, or sipping frothy café crèmes over a good book, gazing out at the blustery city through frosty windows. Since there are fewer fellow tourists roaming around, you can generally expect shorter lines and less crowded museums and restaurants. It's nice to sort of feel you have the city to yourself, isn't it?

    Your chances of snagging a good deal on airfares are much higher at this time of year. Not to mention the pleasure of having more of Paris and its treasures to yourself. Long...MORE gone are the endless lines of tourists and the overcrowded metro cars. In November, too, you'll have more chances of striking up a conversation with the locals, who have all long since returned from summer vacation.

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  • 02 of 04

    Preparing for November Weather

    Despite those rumors that it's a gloomy, uninspiring time of year, you may not want to rule out November in Paris. If you're someone who doesn't mind a bit of rain, really enjoys taking in art, going to the theatre, or loafing around in cafes reading, it might even be ideal for you to book a sojourn.

    The November Temperatures:

    • Minimum temperature: 5 degrees C (41 degrees F)
    • Maximum temperature: 10 degrees C (50 degrees F)
    • Average temperature: 6 degrees C (42.8 degrees F)
    • Average rainfall: 54 millimeters (2.1 inches)

    The leaves have turned and it can be rainy and chilly, often approaching freezing by early morning. There are fewer daylight hours to be out and about. 

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  • 03 of 04

    Packing Your Suitcase

    Paris sunset
    ••• Pexels / Pixabay

    Pack for cold and wet weather. Factor in wind chill and you'll immediately understand why your suitcase should be well-stocked with plenty of sweaters, scarves, coats, and warm socks.

    An umbrella and/or a waterproof jacket with a hood is a must in this wet season. Buy a sturdy and large umbrella because wind gusts will quickly snap the cheap varieties and small ones will often leave you wet. 

    In terms of footwear, you don't necessarily need boots (unless you plan on long walks outdoors or outside the city), but footwear made of waterproof material would be best. If you enjoy sporting heels, remember to bring at least one pair of flat shoes for walking, as the streets and even metro stairs can be slick from the rain.

    A light pair of gloves will make walking around the city more comfortable. You may also want to think about bringing a small thermos so you can warm yourself with hot coffee or tea while seeing the sights (or waiting outside in the occasional line). 

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  • 04 of 04

    Enjoying November Seasonal Events

    November Events, primarily held indoors, will give you a variety of things to do during this autumn season in Paris. The Paris Autumn Festival or "Festival de l'Automne" launches the post-summer season highlighting some of the most compelling works in contemporary visual art, music, cinema, and theater.

    November, at the stroke of midnight on the third Thursday, is the time for the release of the year's Beaujolais Nouveau. Tastings and release parties celebrating this young wine are held in Paris restaurants and wine shops. 

    Join in with other chocolate lovers at the annual Salon du Chocolate held at the Porte de Versailles convention center at Paris's south edge. It's a trade show with many fun and delicious side events.