November in the United States is a time when the country shakes off its autumnal glow and slowly ushers in the chill of the coming winter. It’s a time for gathering, reflecting, and exploring. The scenery ranges from the last of the fall foliage to the start of festive holiday preparations. If you’re looking to explore the USA during this transitional period, there are a plethora of destinations offering their own unique draw. Whether you’re seeking a vacation rental to feel at home away from home, or you’re on the hunt for the best places to soak in the culture, heritage, and natural beauty, there’s something for everyone. Here are the 10 best places in the USA to visit in November 2023.
Asheville, North Carolina
Asheville, North Carolina, nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, is a city steeped in rich history and natural beauty. Established in the late 18th century and named after North Carolina Governor Samuel Ashe, Asheville became a retreat for the wealthy seeking respite in its cool mountains. Today, it’s renowned for its vibrant arts scene, historic architecture, and outdoor activities.
November in Asheville is a time of breathtaking fall foliage and crisp mountain air. It’s an ideal month for cozying up in a vacation rental cabin or exploring the eclectic downtown. The city’s historical charm, combined with the backdrop of autumn leaves, makes it one of the best places to visit during the fall season.
Top spots in Asheville include:
- Biltmore Estate: America’s largest home, offering a glimpse into the opulence of the Gilded Age.
- Blue Ridge Parkway: A scenic drive with panoramic mountain vistas, especially captivating in November.
- Downtown Arts District: Explore galleries, studios, and murals in a celebration of local creativity.
- Asheville’s Breweries: Taste some of the finest craft beers in the ‘Beer City USA.’
- Outdoor Adventures: Hiking, mountain biking, and zip-lining cater to the active spirit against a backdrop of autumnal colors.
Asheville’s unique blend of history, culture, and natural splendor, along with the welcoming atmosphere of its vacation rentals, make it a top destination for a November getaway.
New York City, New York
New York City, the emblematic metropolis known as “The Big Apple,” has a storied past that dates back to 1624 when it was established as a trading post by Dutch colonists and called New Amsterdam. In 1664, the city was captured by the English and renamed New York. Over the centuries, it has become a melting pot of cultures and a symbol of the American dream.
Visiting in November presents a city draped in autumnal elegance, with Thanksgiving parades and the early stirrings of the festive season. Opting for a vacation rental can provide a cozy home base to explore the city’s myriad of attractions.
Key experiences include:
- Central Park: Witness the fall foliage that adorns this iconic park in the heart of Manhattan.
- Broadway: Catch a legendary performance in the world’s premier theater district.
- Museums: The city’s plethora of museums, like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, offer cultural enrichment.
- Times Square: Revel in the electric atmosphere of this bustling commercial and entertainment hub.
- Empire State Building: Enjoy panoramic views from this historic skyscraper’s observatory.
November also is the perfect time for holiday shopping, with markets and stores offering early festive deals. New York City is undoubtedly one of the best places to capture the essence of urban America, with its vibrant energy and rich history echoing through the streets.
Napa Valley, California
Napa Valley, in the heart of California’s wine country, is renowned for its lush vineyards, exquisite wines, and historical charm. Established during the California Gold Rush, it flourished as an agricultural region, and by the late 19th century, it had become a premier wine-producing area. The Judgment of Paris in 1976 catapulted Napa Valley onto the international stage when its wines surpassed French competitors in a blind taste test.
November is an exceptional time to visit; the harvest rush has ebbed, the leaves of vineyards display autumnal colors, and the air is crisp with anticipation of winter. A vacation rental in Napa Valley during this month offers a serene escape, with fireside tastings and the valley’s natural splendor as a backdrop.
Top experiences include:
- Winery Tours: From boutique family-run estates to iconic wine houses like Stag’s Leap, winery tours offer insight into the art of viticulture and vinification.
- Culinary Delights: The region boasts Michelin-starred restaurants and local eateries featuring farm-to-table dining experiences.
- Hot Air Balloon Rides: See the valley from above in a peaceful morning balloon ride.
- Spa and Wellness: Rejuvenate with spa treatments infused with local products like grape seed and mineral-rich waters.
- The Arts: Explore Napa Valley’s artistic side with galleries and events that showcase local and international artists.
Visiting Napa Valley in November means fewer crowds, intimate encounters with winemakers, and the best places offering a tranquil yet luxurious retreat into this storied wine country.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Santa Fe, New Mexico, is a city rich in history, art, and culture. Founded in 1610 by Spanish colonists, it’s the oldest state capital in the United States. Known for its Pueblo-style architecture and as a hub of indigenous and Spanish cultures, Santa Fe is a mosaic of history.
November in Santa Fe is a time of brilliant blue skies and crisp autumn air, the aspens shimmering in gold. It’s an ideal season for those seeking the warmth of Southwestern culture against a cooler backdrop. Vacation rentals in Santa Fe during this time offer a cozy retreat, often complete with kiva fireplaces and traditional decor, providing an authentic New Mexican experience.
For the best places to visit and things to do:
- The Plaza: The heart of downtown Santa Fe, The Plaza is surrounded by historic buildings and is perfect for exploring local shops and restaurants.
- Canyon Road: Renowned for its art galleries, Canyon Road is a must-visit for art enthusiasts.
- Museum of International Folk Art: This museum showcases a vast collection of folk art from around the world, a cultural feast for the eyes.
- Loretto Chapel: Visit this architectural marvel to see its mysterious spiral staircase.
- Santa Fe Opera House: Check if there are performances; the venue is spectacular.
A visit in November allows you to experience the city’s unique blend of Native American and Spanish traditions as they prepare for the festive season, making Santa Fe one of the best places for cultural immersion and historical exploration.
Honolulu, the vibrant epicenter of Hawaii, offers a tropical paradise with a storied past. Initially settled by Polynesian migrants, the area wasn’t known as Honolulu until the 1800s. It became the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom and, later, the 50th state of the U.S. Today, it’s a modern city that retains its rich traditions and natural beauty.
November in Honolulu is a time of warm days and cooler nights, with fewer tourists and the chance to immerse in local culture. Opting for a vacation rental provides a personal touch to the stay, offering more space and amenities to enjoy the island life.
Here are the best places and activities in Honolulu:
- Waikiki Beach: This iconic stretch of sandy beach is perfect for surfing or soaking up the sun.
- Diamond Head State Monument: Hike up this famous volcanic crater for stunning panoramic views.
- Iolani Palace: The only royal palace on U.S. soil offers a glimpse into Hawaii’s regal history.
- Pearl Harbor National Memorial: A sobering and educational site honoring the events of World War II.
- Hanauma Bay: Explore the natural marine sanctuary, ideal for snorkeling among vibrant coral and fish.
Honolulu in November is one of the best places to escape the imminent winter, blending historical exploration with beach relaxation.
Chicago, Illinois, known as the “Windy City,” boasts a dynamic history, beginning as a small trading post at the mouth of the Chicago River and exploding into a bustling metropolis following the 1871 Great Chicago Fire. This resilient spirit defines the city’s character, with its impressive skyline rising boldly along the shores of Lake Michigan.
In November, Chicago wraps up in autumnal grandeur, offering visitors a less crowded and intimate experience. Vacation rentals here provide a cozy refuge from the crisp air, with options ranging from high-rise apartments with stunning city views to quaint brownstones in historic neighborhoods.
Top attractions include:
- The Art Institute of Chicago: A premier art museum hosting thousands of works, from ancient to contemporary.
- Millennium Park: Famous for the reflective sculpture “Cloud Gate,” also known as “The Bean.”
- Navy Pier: A lakefront playground with rides, shops, and eateries offering views of the city and Lake Michigan.
- Willis Tower Skydeck: For thrill-seekers, step onto the Ledge, a glass balcony extending four feet outside the 103rd floor.
- Chicago’s Magnificent Mile: This stretch is a shopper’s paradise, with numerous stores, boutiques, and restaurants.
Visiting Chicago in November, one of the best places for urban exploration offers a blend of cultural richness, historical depth, and festive pre-holiday activities, set against a backdrop of architectural marvels and lakefront beauty.
Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston, South Carolina, is a city woven with the threads of American history, established in 1670 and known for its well-preserved architecture and deep-rooted Southern charm. Its waterfronts once bustled with maritime trade, and it played pivotal roles in both the Revolutionary and Civil Wars.
November in Charleston is enchanting, with mild temperatures and colorful fall foliage enhancing its antebellum beauty. It’s an excellent time for visitors to choose a vacation rental—be it a historic home or a modern apartment—as they explore the city’s cobblestone streets without the summer crowds.
Highlights of Charleston include:
- Historic District: Stroll past grandiose homes and the iconic Battery promenade.
- Charleston City Market: A vibrant marketplace offering local crafts, art, and flavors.
- Plantation Tours: Explore the lush grounds and gardens of estates like the Magnolia Plantation.
- Fort Sumter National Monument: Accessible by ferry, this is a significant site for Civil War enthusiasts.
- Culinary Scene: Savor Southern cuisine at its finest, from classic BBQ to gourmet dining.
A visit in November also coincides with various food and cultural festivals, showcasing why Charleston is repeatedly lauded as one of the best places to experience the warmth and richness of the South.
Zion National Park, Utah
Zion National Park in Utah is a sanctuary of majestic beauty. Established in 1919, Zion’s history is ancient, with human habitation dating back thousands of years by the Ancestral Puebloans and later the Paiute tribe. The park’s name, given by early Mormon settlers, reflects a place of peace and refuge, which it continues to embody today.
November is an idyllic time to visit. The summer crowds have dispersed, and the landscape is a palette of rich autumn hues. Zion’s vacation rentals, from cozy cabins to homes perched on the edge of the canyon, offer serene views and a homey base from which to explore the park’s wonders.
Key sites and activities include:
- Angel’s Landing: This trail offers thrilling climbs and spectacular views of the park.
- The Narrows: Hike through the river between towering canyon walls for a unique adventure.
- Emerald Pools: A pleasant hike to sparkling pools and waterfalls.
- Canyon Overlook Trail: Perfect for a quick hike with breathtaking canyon vistas.
- Wildlife Viewing: November brings opportunities to spot mule deer, bighorn sheep, and numerous bird species against a less crowded backdrop.
Visiting Zion National Park in November is among the best places for those seeking to immerse themselves in nature’s quiet before winter’s full onset.
Savannah, Georgia, established in 1733, is one of the oldest cities in the United States, revered for its historic charm, cobblestone streets, and lush, oak-lined squares. As the oldest city in the state, Savannah was a strategic port city in the American Revolution and Civil War, now celebrated for its well-preserved Victorian architecture and rich Southern heritage.
November in Savannah is a canvas of warm colors and gentle temperatures, an ideal time for visitors to stay in a historic vacation rental to truly experience the city’s antebellum soul. The historic homes and charming inns serve as perfect havens for exploration and relaxation.
Savannah’s best places and experiences include:
- Forsyth Park: The city’s grandest green space, famous for its iconic fountain and ample walking paths.
- River Street: Lined with boutiques, galleries, and restaurants, this bustling waterfront is a must-visit.
- Historic District Tours: Discover Savannah’s past through its beautiful historic district.
- Bonaventure Cemetery: A hauntingly beautiful cemetery that inspired poets and authors.
- Local Cuisine: Indulge in traditional Southern fare and fresh seafood.
Visiting Savannah in November allows for a blend of cultural festivities, historical exploration, and the enchanting allure of one of the South’s best-preserved cities.
San Diego, California
San Diego, California, with its balmy climate and natural harbor, has a rich history that dates back to its founding in 1769, making it the first site visited by Europeans on the West Coast. Known for its beautiful beaches, parks, and melting pot of cultures, San Diego has grown from a remote Spanish mission into a thriving metropolitan city.
In November, San Diego’s climate remains mild and welcoming, offering an array of vacation rentals from beachfront homes to chic city apartments. This time of year is perfect for enjoying the city’s attractions without the summer crowds.
San Diego’s best places to visit and things to do include:
- Balboa Park is a cultural hub with museums, gardens, and the renowned San Diego Zoo.
- La Jolla Cove: Ideal for snorkeling, kayaking, and observing sea lions.
- Gaslamp Quarter: A lively district with excellent dining, shopping, and nightlife.
- USS Midway Museum: Explore the historic aircraft carrier turned museum.
- Sunset Cliffs: Perfect for a scenic walk or picnic as the sun dips into the Pacific.
Visiting San Diego in November allows travelers to experience the best places with optimal weather, fewer tourists, and the laid-back California lifestyle that makes it a year-round destination.
In summary, whether you’re looking for a cozy vacation rental, a city vibrant with the holiday spirit, or a serene retreat to nature, these best places across the USA in November 2023 offer memorable experiences. Each location has its unique flavor and set of attractions that are especially delightful during this month. From the changing leaves to the festive preparations, there’s an abundance of reasons to explore the rich tapestry of destinations within the United States.