With monsoons leaving behind clearer skies and cooler winds and snow yet to find its way to roads and tracks, November is a month to travel, with birds flying down from all over for the winters and fairs and festivals getting marked on its calenders. Here are 11 destinations for November, a month known for its ideal family vacations, adventure and wildlife, a more welcomed sun, a perfect tan, cooler sands, snow at its tips and some of the grandest festivals and celebrations of the country, around the corner.
1. Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh – A festival by the river
Sometime during the last week of November, the banks of Ganges host one of the most significant festivals of Indian Classical Music and Dance. Other than pilgrims, one finds some of the most celebrated artists like Pandit Birju Maharaj, Kailash Kher performing in Varanasi. Also taking place about during the same time is Dev Deepawali, which is marked by grand aartis and leaves the stairs to the river lit with countless diyas, and the river itself glittering under the reflection of the city. All these aspects make it one of the places to visit in November in India. You can know more about it from our special blog on Dev Deepawali.
What is avoided and unkempt in summers is festive, colourful and welcoming by the winters. With its sands a bit cooler, November in Jaisalmer looks forward to its desert safari, walking through its forts, palaces, and havelis and enjoying evenings by its lakes. It easily makes it to the best places to visit in November in India. Situated close to the Pakistan border, Jaisalmer’s Sonar Quilla is a living fort replete with hotels, shops and old and majestic havelis
3. Tarkarli, Maharashtra- The lesser known beach holiday
One of the most beautiful beaches of the state, Tarkarli offers long stretches of white sands, a scuba diving destination and an occasional spotting of dolphins. This one gets as close to a perfect beach holiday for november as one can. And we are not even done yet. Find a fort by the sea, a lazy and calm lake and a enjoy a boat ride through its backwaters. If you have raked up a few leaves and have offbeat travel on your mind, this is one of the great places to visit in November in India. To know more about things to do here, read this Tarkarli Travelogue.
Believed to be the most sacred of Buddhist pilgrimage centres all over the world, the town is landmarked by descendants of the very Mahabodhi Tree under which Lord Buddha achieved enlightenment and the neighbouring Mahabodhi temple. Visit Bodhgaya during November for the pleasant weather and a celebrated hustle bustle, as the town plays host to a number of monks from Dharamshala.
5. Shantiniketan, West Bengal - A calm November
A calm town near Kolkata known for its Tagore Ashram, the Nobel Laureate’s vision and life events, a museum and art gallery. Like most of what’s in and around, this university town is best enjoyed during November with its pleasant weather.
Bharatpur is one of the ideal places to visit in November in India. It is that time of the year when Bharatpur is home not only to a rich variety of local species but to countless birds migrating here for the winters. Find here birds from all the way to Siberia and Central Asia such as Cranes, Pelicans. Wagtails, Geese, Flycatchers, Pipits and countless more, making birdwatchers from all over, visit the park around November. Also spot a number of land birds, waterbirds.
7. Sanasar, Jammu and Kashmir – Quieter hills with livelier skies
If this November, you want to stretch your arms, paragliding over Kashmir’s valleys, trek, rock climb and play golf, mark Sanasar on your maps already. Head over to this little known town during November, to have just the right mix of a calm and peaceful holiday with a dash of adventure.
8. Sundarbans, West Bengal- Royal Bengal Tigers and the largest mangrove forest
As monsoons give way to winters, they leave behind the gates to these thick forests open. While the rains made travelling to the mangroves difficult, the much awaited November month bring the most pleasant of temperatures to visit one of the richest and most balanced ecosystems of the country. Sunderbans in November is a sight o behold. Sundarbans Unravelled
9. Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh- The city around a Shiva Temple
Landmarked by the Mahakaleshwar temple by a lake, and all the spirituality and festivity that it gathers around itself, visit Ujjain during November when the weather is pleasant. It is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, marked by a self-born lingam and the sprawling structure built around it. A great option for places to visit during November in India.
Any word used to describe the celebrations, devotion and festivity at the Golden temple of Guru Nanak Jayanti in November, tends to be an understatement. Guru Nanak Guru-Purab falls in the month of November but the exact date varies from year to year. While this landmark of the state is always a unique experience, visit Amritsar is one of the places to visit in November in India to find the structure sparkling with lights and witness religion and spirituality as never before.
11. Pushkar, Rajasthan- Of Fairs, Festivals and a Holy Lake
Pushkar is one of the oldest cities of India. It is considered to be of great religious and cultural importance and comes alive in November. It has a lot of temples with a rare one dedicated to Lord Brahma and a holy lake. But this places is most famous for the Annual Pushkar Camel Fair that takes place in the month of November. The dates of Pushkar Fair this year are 26th Oct – 6th Nov, 2014. One can take in the colorful atmosphere of the fair or have a laid-back evening on the banks of the Pushkar Lake surrounded by hundreds of temples.
12. Hampi, Karnataka
Located amidst the ruins of the ancient Vijaynagar empire, Hampi is one of the most historically significant places in India. It used to be the capital of the prosperous Vijaynagar empire. Home to several temples, royal pavilions and platforms, and monuments, Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in India. The Virupaksha temple located there is an important religious and pilgrim site for Hindus. The overall rocky and rugged environment of Hampi makes it a backpacker’s delight. The weather in November is quite cool and pleasant, which makes it a perfect getaway in November.
13. Manali, Himachal Pradesh
This beautiful hill station in Himachal Pradesh is one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in North India. Surrounded by the towering, snow-capped Himalayan peaks and thick pine forests, one can just not get over the sheer raw beauty of this place. The winter months begin from November onwards, and that is when the true scenic beauty of Manali is revealed to the world. It’s also the perfect time to go skiing for all the winter sports enthusiasts. Add Manali to your places to visit in November in India and you’re bound to have an enchanting experience.
14. Coorg, Karnataka
Popularly known as the Scotland of India and the Kashmir of the South, Coorg is a small hill station located in the South Indian State of Karnataka. The greenery and the natural beauty of the place, coupled with the perfect cool and pleasant climate has made it a hit among vacation-goers, especially the adventure and trekking buffs. Several local tribes and communities are settled here, which makes it a really diverse place in terms of culture and society.
15. Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh
A UNESCO World Heritage Site for all the right reasons, Ziro Valley is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places in India. One is bound to fall in love with the scenery of this place, which mainly comprises of rice and paddy fields, high mountains and clean, flowing rivers. It is mainly inhabited by the Apa Tani tribe who are really very helpful and hospitable people. Though by November winter sets in here, but the sheer enchanting nature of this place makes it one of the best places to visit in November in India.
16. Kalimpong, West Bengal
A hill station which gathered fame post the Colonial Era, Kalimpong is a small, yet serene place situated amidst a backdrop of the mighty snow covered peaks of the Himalayas. It’s slowly developing into a popular vacation getaway owing to it’s lovely temperate climate. It is also an important destination for Buddhism in India. Go for a trek and enjoy the natural surroundings of the place, opt to meditate, go for Buddhist tours, or just relax, this place is perfect for all of it.
17. Orchha, Madhya Pradesh
Literally meaning “the hidden place”, Orchha is one of the marvels located in the central part of India. It used to be the foothold of the Bundela rulers during the medieval time period. Though it is also known for it’s rich historical and cultural significance, it’s the spectacular medieval architecture of this place, which attracts tourists from all over the world. The numerous palaces, forts, frescoes and murals are absolutely exquisite and bound to blow one’s mind. It’s one of the best options for November Holidays in India as the weather is perfect for sightseeing.
18. Almora, Uttarakhand
Offering a breathtaking, panoramic view of the Himalayas, Almora is a small station in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. It’s a popular tourist destination owing to it’s vibrant culture and heritage, the mouth-watering food and its incredible scenery. Several temples are present here, the most important ones being the Chital and Nanda Devi temples which are flocked by devotees most of the times. Head over to this alluring place for a fun holiday in November.
19. Kohima, Nagaland
The land of the Nagas, the fierce warrior tribes, Kohima is the capital of the Indian state of Nagaland, a part of the 7 sisters, in the North-eastern part of India. It offers a visual treat to the visitors, owing to the rolling green hills and the mountainous background. The Hornbill Festival, which showcases the rich culture and traditions of the 16 different types of Naga tribes, is held in December every year and is a major tourist attraction.
20. Gir, Gujarat
The sole home of the endangered Asiatic Lion, the Gir Wildlife Sanctuary was established in the year 1975, as a need to safeguard the lion population which had fallen steeply due to illegal hunting and poaching. Since the sanctuary has been set up, though government conservation attempts, there has been an increase in the lion population. Though the place is shut during the monsoon season, the winter months are the best time to visit it, as there is an increased possibility of sighting wildlife.
Are you planning a trip to India in November? If you plan a trip to any of these places in November, let us know in comments. If you have more ideas for places to visit in India in November, then also please add in the comments.