You want to visit New York, but you wonder if going to New York in November is a good idea? In this post, I talk about every single aspect of a trip to New York in November. Climate, activities, budget, tourist crowds, major events... I will tell you all the information you need in order to know if this month will suit your trip!
NEW YORK'S WEATHER IN NOVEMBER
As we will see throughout this post, going to New York in November can be a very good choice for many reasons, but the weather is definitely not one of them.
Even if the days are sunny most of the time, it is rather cold and the weather conditions are overall quite unfavourable. Moreover, the rain that falls regularly reinforces this cold feeling.
However, if you dress appropriately, i.e. warmly, you can still visit the city without too much trouble. The average temperature in New York during November is 9°C. The sun stays up for about 10 hours at this time of the year.
WHAT TO DO IN NEW YORK IN NOVEMBER?
Is it your first time in New York? During the month of November, you'll have no trouble discovering all of the city's must-see sights and attractions. If you're looking for ideas on what to do in New York, you can click on the button below.
In New York, you will be able to:
- Visit the iconic avenues and neighbourhoods of New York: 5th Avenue, Wall Street, SoHo, Greenwich Village, Chinatown...,
- See the greatest shows and musicals on Broadway : The Lion King, the Phantom of the Opera, Chicago, Moulin Rouge...,
- Visit the museums in New York, some of which are among the most famous in the world, such as the MoMa, Met and the Museum of Natural History,
- See NBA, NHL and NFL games in legendary arenas such as Madison Square Garden, Barclays Center and MetLife Stadium.
In addition to all these year-round activities, you will also have the opportunity to make some discoveries that are almost only possible during the month of November in New York.
SKATING IN NEW YORK
Generally, from the very end of October or the beginning of November, you will be able to go ice skating on one of the big rinks in New York. The most famous of these are:
- The Rink at Rockefeller Center, a rink that sits at the foot of the Comcast Building – the tallest building in Rockefeller Center. This is also the location of the famous Christmas tree, which is put up in November, though its decorations are not completed until December.
- The Wollman Rink, in Central Park. This is another of the city's iconic rinks, which you've probably already seen in a romantic comedy or Christmas movie.
- Bryant Park Ice Rink, which is right next to the Bryant Park Christmas Market. Both usually open in late October.
ENJOY THE CHRISTMAS MARKETS AS SOON AS THEY OPEN
No need to wait until December to feel the Christmas spirit in New York. As early as November, some of the city's great Christmas markets open their doors:
- The Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park is usually open by the last days of October. In small glass huts, a large number of artisans from all over the world come to present their products.
- The Union Square Christmas Market which opens in mid-November, is located in Midtown, in the heart of Manhattan. There, you will find several hundred small booths with a wide range of products: souvenirs, crafts, drinks and hot meals...
- The Christmas Market at Columbus Circle is one of the largest in the city. Located right next to Central Park, it's the perfect place to experience the magic of Christmas and find gifts and souvenirs to bring back from your trip.
- Grand Central Holiday Fair is located in one of New York's most iconic buildings, Grand Central Station. And to top it all off, it's one of the few indoor Christmas markets in New York!
All of these markets are must-sees during a trip to New York City at the end of the year, and they can be discovered on a walking tour with a guide, who will help you better discover the magic of Christmas.
Have you considered buying a tourist pass? 🎫
You wish to do as many activities as possible during your trip to New York? If so, and especially if it's your first time in the Big Apple, I really recommend buying the New York City Pass. This tourist pass will give you many advantages throughout your stay, including access to 5 main tourist sites. What's more, you will be able to choose among different activities (2 fixed activities + 3 activities you can select among a list) 🙂
DISCOVER CENTRAL PARK AND OTHER GREAT NYC PARKS IN AUTUMN
It is often said that Central Park is the Green Lung of New York. Well, from mid-October to the end of November, it should actually be called the Yellow, Red and Orange Lung 😄 Indeed, during this time of the year, you will have the opportunity to witness an unforgettable and magnificent natural spectacle in the city's most famous park.
But there are also many other places where you can admire the autumnal hues in New York. I recommend taking the time to visit:
- Prospect Park in Brooklyn, one of the best places to walk in November in New York;
- The New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx, which is one of the largest botanical garden in the United States and home to the largest wooded area in the city;
- Greenbelt Park on Staten Island, a large natural forest with beech and oak trees, and many hiking trails;
- Battery Park in lower Manhattan, one of the oldest parks in New York, from which you can enjoy a beautiful view of the Statue of Liberty.
BIG EVENTS IN NEW YORK IN NOVEMBER
Many great events are awaiting you in November in New York:
- The Thanksgiving Day Parade, is a beautiful parade organised by Macy's department stores', during which giant balloons are paraded along the city's main avenues. Thanksgiving is one of the most important holidays in the United States, and this parade, which has been held every year since 1924, is an event not to be missed!
- The New York City Marathon, which takes place on the first Sunday in November. Along with the US open, it is the biggest annual sporting event in New York. Around 50,000 people take part in the race, and over 2 million people come to watch it each year.
- Black Friday, which is held the day after Thanksgiving, marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season. For the occasion, many boutiques, department stores and outlets all over the country (and therefore also in New York, of course), prepare exceptional sales. The days before, don't hesitate to buy some local newspapers to find offers and coupons. And on the day of the sale, I recommend getting up early and being there for the shops’ openings, so as to find the best deals.
WHY GO TO NEW YORK IN NOVEMBER?
To resume, is going to New York in November a good idea? Well, I would say that it depends on what each person wants to discover in this huge city. So, to help you find your own answer to this question, here is a summary of the pros and cons of going to New York in November.
- All the must-see attractions are open, and you'll be able to attend some great events. November is one of the busiest times of the year.
- You can already discover many of the winter Christmas attractions, especially during the second half of November. From ice rinks and Christmas markets to street and shop window decorations, you won’t lack options!
- November is outside the very high tourist season. Unlike December and the previous months, November is a little less busy for tourists. This means you can visit the city a little more leisurely and spend less time in queues.
- Travelling to New York is a little cheaper in November. In fact, November is one of the months with the lowest airfare and hotel room rates in New York. For example, a return flight to New York City is easily £85 cheaper than in the summer. The same applies to accommodation, so if you are unsure of where to stay in New York, make sure you book your accommodation as far in advance as possible to get even better rates.
- The weather is not the best. The temperatures are not very pleasant – especially when it rains, and at the beginning and end of the day. If you want to spend a lot of time outdoors, you may want to visit New York in the summer or spring.
- If possible, go during the second half of November, as many of the attractions that are only available during the holiday season are not yet open during the first days of the month.
You’ve reached the end of this article! I hope you enjoyed it 😊 If you want information about going to New York at a later date and enjoying the Christmas holiday season in full, don’t hesitate to read my article about New York in December! 🙂