Winter Sun Seeker: Where to Go in November

by Chris Leadbeater, The Daily Telegraph, September 6, 2016

November can be a glorious month to go in search of winter sun. With no school holidays in the diary, beaches, hotels and aircraft are likely to be calm – while many destinations offer tempting discounts in what is traditionally a quiet window ahead of the Christmas rush.

The weather is also behaving itself. The monsoon period which afflicts India and the Far East has generally rained itself out by the end of September. And if the hurricane season in the Atlantic is still technically in gust – it is generally deemed to last until the end of November – then the risky months (September and October) have already passed.

Looking beyond November travel ideas? Our new Heatseeker tool  lets you search for your ideal holiday by month and by flight time, giving you the best options for sun-filled trips, destination advice, and hotel recommendations too. 

Photo by:  luchschen/ iStock / Getty Images Plus/ Getty Images 


19-24C Malta

Max temp: 20C  

Flight time from UK: 2 hours  

Time difference: +1 hour

Sometimes dismissed as one of the Mediterranean’s less imaginative destinations, Malta has a capacity to surprise. There are comfortable hotels in St Julian’s and Sliema – but there is history galore in Valletta, whose huge walls have let it retain a sense of medieval grandeur.

A seven-night break at the chic Le Meridien St Julian’s Hotel & Spa, flying from Gatwick on October 16, costs from £900 per person, including flights, transfers and breakfast, with Sovereign Holidays (01293 762400; ).


Max temp: 21C   

Flight time from UK: 4.5 hours  

Time difference: +0 hour

The Canary Islands are Europe’s most reliable options for winter sun, rarely dipping below 20C. Tenerife, the largest member of the archipelago, is famed for the beach hotels of the Costa Adeje and Playa de las Americas. But it also deals in volcanic majesty and wonderful hiking trails on its vast central peak, Mount Teide – as well as superb restaurants in its capital, Santa Cruz.

A five-night escape to Tenerife, staying at the five-star Sheraton La Caleta resort on a half-board basis, costs from £789 per person, via Inspired Luxury Escapes (03300 372 769; ).

Los Angeles

Max temp: 22C  

Flight time from UK: 11 hours  

Time difference: -8 hours

America’s second biggest city is an act that never needs refining – at least in terms of its weather, with the mercury rarely straying from the mid-20s Celsius. Los Angeles, of course, is a metropolis of attractions. Hollywood is abuzz with bars and stars, the Museum of Contemporary Art dazzles, and Santa Monica is heaven for beach-breakers.

A 13-night Western Discoverer tour that ticks off the key sights of Nevada, Arizona and California – including Los Angeles – costs from £2,695 per person, via Trafalgar (03332 207 095; ).


Max temp: 22C  

Flight time from UK: 4 hours  

Time difference: +0 hours

You do not need a beach to enjoy winter sun. Marrakesh is proof of that. This fabled citadel on the edge of Saharan sand is a mix of swirling souks, relaxed riads and epic Islamic architecture, all wrapped up in north African mythology. That it rarely drops below 20C between October and March is almost incidental.

Kirker Holidays (020 7593 1899; ) offers three-night breaks at the boutique Riad Farnatchi, in the Marrakesh medina, from £769 per person – including flights, transfers, breakfast and private city tour.

South Australia

Max temp: 24C 

Flight time from UK: 21 hours 

Time difference: +8.5 hours

Sometimes lost in the glare that emanates from New South Wales and Western Australia, the southern state has more than enough attractions to fill a holiday. Adelaide, its capital, is a city of art and culture, Kangaroo Island is a wildlife haven, and wonderful wines are produced in the Barossa Valley.

The Ultimate Travel Company (020 3131 7249; ) sells a nine-day Australia Southern Comforts tour that visits Kangaroo Island and the Barossa winelands – from £2,375 per person, including flights.

Buenos Aires

25-29C Buenos Aires

Max temp: 25C

Flight time from UK: 14 hours

Time difference: -4 hours

In some senses, Argentina’s capital is a place out of context. There it sits, towards the lower reaches of South America, pinned to that broadest of Latin rivers, the Rio de la Plata. Yet Buenos Aires stands out as a hive of cosmopolitan allure on a continent of rainforest and mountains – brimming with culture and cool in the museums of Puerto Madero, the bars of Palermo, the parrilla eateries of San Telmo and Recoleta, and the urban mystique of Boca.

A 14-night Luxury Argentina tour that dissects the country in sophisticated detail, including time in Buenos Aires, costs from £7,780 per person via Journey Latin America (03300 379 900; ).


Max temp: 27C

Flight time from UK: 10 hours

Time difference: -5 hours

The nickname says it all. The “Sunshine State” basks in warmth in the 20s Celsius throughout the year, making for a destination where life looks towards the beach. To be exact, Florida boasts 1,350 miles of coastline (more than any US state other than Alaska), with its key cities (Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville) clinging to this sandy edge. Of course, the interior also pleases. Orlando and its theme parks sit at the heart of the matter.

A seven-night self-catering break at the spacious Reunion Resort Orlando costs from £1,609 per person, via James Villas (03332 221 616; ).


Max temp: 28C

Flight time from UK: 9 hours

Time difference: -5 hours

The shedding of its pariah-state tag and the thawing of its relations with the US have returned the Caribbean’s biggest island to the tourism mainstream. But Cuba has long been a solid option for a winter escape – thanks in part to the broad beaches on its north coast, within easy reach of Havana (a city which, full of romantic Hispanic architecture, lives up to its mythology). Varadero needs little introduction, and works well for families.

Virgin Holidays has seven nights at the NH Capri in Havana in November 2017 for £1,459 per person, including flights from Gatwick and transfers (0344 557 9275; ).


Max temp: 29C

Flight time from UK: 10 hours

Time difference: +1 hour

Fast emerging from a 20th century of colonial woes and civil war, Mozambique is a rising star of southern African tourism. It offers discoveries in its busy capital, Maputo, and the safari zones of the interior (notably Gorongosa National Park) – but is rapidly becoming known for its 1,430 miles of Indian Ocean coastline, where chic resorts are putting down roots. The high-20s Celsius is the least you can expect during the European winter.

Steppes Travel (01258 787508; ) offers a 10-day Mozambique Island Hopping Dhow Safari, which meanders through the Quirimbas archipelago – from £2,745 per person, including flights.

Yucatan Peninsula

Max temp: 29C

Flight time from UK: 10 hours

Time difference: -6 hours

A country of epic history and geography, with shorelines on two vast bodies of water, Mexico is at its most accessible on the eastern edge of its Yucatan Peninsula. Cancun, purpose-built here as a hotspot of luxury resorts and beach hotels, attracts endless streams of holidaymakers who want to doze on the edge of the Caribbean Sea. But the past awaits in thrilling fashion, not least in the iconic Mayan sites of Chichen Itza, Tulum and Coba.

A 10-day self-drive Yucatan break, combining Mayan history and luxury resorts, costs from £1,765 per person, via Journey Latin America (03300 379 900; ).



Max temp: 30C

Flight time from UK: 9 hours

Time difference: -5 hours

Flat and low-slung where plenty of its Caribbean colleagues are craggy and volcanic, Antigua is a dream of a destination, equipped – according to local folklore – with 365 beaches, one for every day of the year. The hotels dotted on the fringes of these sandy stretches are happy havens for escapes from the European winter. The island basks in temperatures of 30C during Britain’s cold months, and in a dry season of December-May.

A seven-night break at the five-star Carlisle Bay in Antigua, costs from £2,259 per person, via Kuoni (03331 309 258; ).


Max temp: 30C

Flight time from UK: 14 hours

Time difference: +6 hours

Torn apart by conflict in the Seventies, Cambodia has a dark history that cannot be avoided in Phnom Penh. But if the actions of the Khmer Rouge still cast a shadow, there is plenty of light too in a country of fine sights – the palaces and statues that also shape the capital, the towers and spires of the incomparable Angkor temple complex, the beach resorts that are appearing around Sihanoukville. Acknowledge the past, admire the future.

A 10-night Cambodian Explorer tour that visits the temples at Angkor as well as Phnom Penh costs from £1,899 per person, via Kuoni (03331 309 258; ).


Max temp: 31C 

Flight time from UK: 7 hours

Time difference: +3 hours

There are several reasons that the most glitzy of the United Arab Emirates has become such a haven from the European winter – the architectural ambition of hotels such as the Burj Al Arab, the warm sands of Jumeirah Beach, the trendy bars and eateries that dot the cityscape, the retail joys on offer in vast shopping temples such as the Mall of the Emirates. But mainly it is to do with the daytime heat, which pins itself resolutely to the 30C mark.

A three-night stay at the Jumeirah Mini A’Salam costs from £1049 per person via Kuoni (03331 309 258; ).

Koh Samui

Max temp: 32C

Flight time from UK: 12 hours

Time difference: +6 hours

Long seen as the Far East country most reliable for winter sun, Thailand has vast appeal, with some 2,000 miles of shoreline along the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. Koh Samui sits on the west side of the latter, an island (Thailand’s second largest, after Phuket) fringed by sandy crescents – not least Chaweng and Lamai Beaches, on the east coast. No longer the undiscovered gem it once was, this is none the less a holiday paradise.

A 12-day Essential Thailand tour that spends five days on Koh Samui as part of a wider tour of the country costs from £1,328, via Selective Asia (03300 378 368; ).


Max temp: 32C

Flight time from UK: 15 hours

Time difference: +5.5 hours

The Far East is a region still full of mystery – and nowhere more so than Burma. Of course, this is partly down to a bleakness of history – the country that calls itself Myanmar spent five decades under military rule before the elections of 2010 saw it begin to tiptoe towards democracy. It has opened to tourism subsequently – and if it is now better known than it was, there is still much to discover in a state that lays claim to 1,200 miles of shore.

A 10-night Classic Myanmar tour that takes in the former capital Yangon (Rangoon), plus the temples of Bagan, costs from £1,887 per person, via  Selective Asia (03300 378 368; ).


This article was written by Chris Leadbeater from The Daily Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.