You can’t beat the sunny Caribbean for a total contrast to the grey skies of Britain. And with the region emerging from its traditional hurricane season, this month is a great time to pick up some bargain beach action on the five-star white sands of the east coast or the wild Atlantic waters of the west. But take in some sights, too - the bustling capital Bridgetown, historic sights from slavery times such as the Morgan Lewis Sugar Mill, and the remarkable underground warren of limestone caverns at Harrison’s Cave.
November marks the end of the wet season here and though there may be the odd tropical downpour, you can pretty much guarantee six hours of sunshine a day and temperatures hovering around 27C. A holiday in this nation of more than a thousand coral islands and atolls is all about lying on white-sand beaches, diving beneath the waves to see the kaleidoscope of marine life, and luxuriating in the world’s top spas. This is the desert-island dream with prices to match, but if you visit this month you can pick up bargains that defy the price hikes in winter high season.
The cooler air descends on this Middle East hotspot this month making it a pleasant time to explore, especially for those who like to mix a little activity with their culture. There’s much to see and do, from browsing the Mutrah Souk in the ancient capital Muscat to wadi bashing in a 4WD along the riverbeds of rocky valleys. Grand mosques, desert forts shaped like sandcastles, and the stupendous rolling dunes of the Wahiba Sands are also on the agenda in this intriguing destination.
Take advantage of the cooler weather to do the double. Immerse yourself in this vibrant North African city, where snake charmers are just one of the exotic sights to see in the medina marketplace, the Djema el-Fna. Next, head an hour or so south to the slopes of Morocco’s highest peaks to trek along mountain paths calling at ancient Berber villages.
The Canaries are a favourite spot to flee to from the British winter, its six main islands including the ever-popular Tenerife, Lanzarote and Gran Canaria. But strike out to the quieter shores of La Gomera, a wild beauty that has been saved from the ravages of mass tourism by its spectacular landscape of deep ravines, lush rainforest and volcanic beaches.
Head to the Serengeti in Tanzania later this month to see herds of more than a million wildebeest, accompanied by hundreds of thousands of zebra and antelope, feed on the grasses of the great plain before they begin their annual migration once more, chasing the rains for more than a thousand miles.
Don’t be fooled, Istanbul may bridge Europe and Asia, but it can be on the chilly side this month. No matter, pull on a fleece and pop an umbrella in your bag then step out into less crowded streets to enjoy top sights such as the opulent Topkapi Palace, the grand Blue Mosque with its six minarets, and the cavernous Basilica Cistern. And after you’ve had your cultural fill, pull up a seat in the nearest restaurant to discover Turkey’s other great attraction, the food. Dine on traditional winter warmers such as Hünkar Begendi, a dish of pureed eggplant, cashar cheese and diced lamb fit for a sultan.
Forget New York, Boston is the place to make the most of the strong pound and get a head-start on that Christmas present list. This charming historic city has a compact, walkable heart and a pleasing variety of shopping experiences, from the brownstone boutiques of Newbury Street, to the cobbles of Quincy Market, and cosy indoor malls such as the Prudential Center. What’s more, shopping taxes are lower and many hotel rooms bigger than in the Big Apple, so you’ll get more bang for your buck.
Get ready to fill those stockings, the festive season gets off to an early start mid-month as the Christmas markets set up their fairylight-bedecked stalls in the squares of towns and cities across Europe. Drink glüwein as you browse nativity scenes and buy baubles for your tree from Arles to Zurich.
So you can’t wait to hit the slopes? Well, November is still a little early but there’s always the chance of some action on the glaciers. Les Deux Alpes and Tignes in France, Hintertux and Stubai Glacier in Austria, Saas Fee and Zermatt in Switzerland are all good bets.