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Paris in November [2020] Quick Guide by a Local

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08/25/20

November in Paris [2020]

Paris in November is calm, a kind of resting month before the start of the Christmas or festive season. November in Paris is the beginning of the low season, almost the only time of the year without many tourists. This means that you will see a more authentic city if you decide to visit Paris in November.

In Paris, November is low season and it comes with shorter or no lines, lower prices, and more hotel availability. However, it also means that the weather in November in Paris is not as its best with more chances of rain, and there are not many seasonal festivals or events.

All considered however, November in Paris can be a great idea for a cultural trip. Here is our guide to making the most of your time in Paris in November 2020.

Arc de Triomphe Paris Fall

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» Basics: Language is French but English is widely spoken; Currency is Euro

» Paris Travel Guide

» Plan: Paris Travel Planner; check out when is the Best Time to Visit Paris;

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» Where to Stay: Best Districts to Stay in Paris

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» Food & Drinks: Paris Food Guide

» Side Trips: Versailles Quick Guide, check out the Best Day Trips from Paris

Is Paris in November Busy? Crowds Forecast

Paris in November is calm and if you don’t like the crowds or waiting in line to visit museums or monuments, this is definitely the best month to come!

However, beware that in 2020 kids will have school holidays from 19 October to 4 November (vacances de la Toussaint) and it is common that families from other parts of France travel to Paris in November for a cultural trip.

The 11th of November (the Armistice of the WWI) is also a holiday in France. This year the 11th of November falls on Wednesday and some people may take a couple of days off for the last mini-holiday in France or abroad before the Christmas holiday.

If you decide to visit Paris in November during one of these two weekends, start booking things right now, especially if you need train tickets from /to Paris.

Below we list the Paris main attractions you will need advance tickets for and have added links to my favorite trusty providers for your convenience.

November Weather in Paris

How is the November weather in Paris? The weather in November in Paris is hard to predict. With a bit of luck, November can have some first days still warm and sunny but by the end of November Paris takes a wintery aspect and it is usually cold.

If we stick to the statistics, the average temperature in Paris in November is 12C maximum and 7C minimum with a 15% probability of rainfall.

If you decide to visit Paris in November you can still consider day trips from Paris to explore the countryside but we recommend having a B plan in case it rains.

What to Wear in Paris in November 2020

Paris Packing List Fall Winter

What to wear in Paris in November 2020? The key to dressing in Paris in the fall is layers. During the day, you are likely to be ok with long sleeve tops, or a light, mid-season jacket but later it can be cold and you probably will need one more layer.

What to pack for Paris in November 2020? The weather in November in Paris calls for good walking shoes, closed-toe and waterproof,  scarves, a cardigan, and a foldable umbrella.

For a more local look, have a look at our Fall /Winter packing lists for men and women:

Before leaving home for Paris, it is a good idea to check the weather forecast (temperatures and rainfall) and review your Paris packing list.

Best Tips for Visiting Paris in November

If you are visiting Paris in November – around the 1st of November or 11th of November – plan and book everything in advance because the 1st of November is a holiday in many places in Europe (France included) and the 11th of November is a holiday day in France.

Always have a B plan for the rainy days in Paris. If you are in need of some ideas, check out our list of fun things to do during a rainy day in Paris.

A week before the departure, have a look at our Transportation Strikes in Paris post, which is always up to date. Just in case . . .

Around the second half of November in Paris, the first Christmas Markets in Paris start to open and some streets start to dress-up for the festive season. This is a good opportunity to enjoy a bit of Christmas in Paris without the crowds (and the higher prices).

Need insurance for France? Be sure to check France travel insurance rates and coverage with our recommended provider, SafetyWing.

Best Things to Do in Paris in November 2020

If you are visiting Paris in November for the first time, you may want to tick some Paris top tourist attractions off your bucket list. The itineraries below are thought for people visiting Paris for the first time and they are planned around the main attractions and the most interesting neighborhoods in Paris:

Apart from all these places and other beautiful sights that you will find in our Paris Travel Blog, you may want to add some seasonal activities for your Paris in November trip. These are some cool things to do when you visit Paris in November 2020:

VISIT A CEMETERY

Pere Lachaise Cemetery Paris

In France, on 1st November (La Toussaint) we honor the dead. This is a Catholic tradition, and also a national holiday in France, and people like to go to the cemeteries to visit the graves of their relatives.

Paris boasts beautiful cemeteries spread all around the city, which are quiet places perfect for a stroll. Some cemeteries (Saint Vincent in Montmartre), are more intimate while other cemeteries (Père Lachaise) are monumental and attract the tourists.

If you can, try to visit one of the cemeteries of Paris in November right after La Toussaint. The cemeteries of Paris are gorgeous under the fall colors, and the flowers on the graves have been renewed.

WALK THE COVERED PASSAGES OF PARIS

Covered Passages Paris

Paris in November is the perfect time to visit some of the most beautiful covered walkways of Paris, a labyrinth of commercial covered passages built during the 18th century across the city. These covered passages, all bathed in natural light, are decorated with beautiful mosaic works, and iron latticework.

After some years of abandonment, the covered passages of Paris were restored to its former glory, and they are today real Art Nouveau / Neoclassical architectural gems.

If you know where to look, you will find delightful ancient boutiques, cute cafes, and other curiosity shops.

TAKE A FOOD TOUR IN PARIS

French Pastries

Food tours in Paris are a good option when the air is fresh but it is not too cold to wander outside. Discover the best food in Paris and some good addresses to eat or buy while learning fascinating historical facts and anecdotes about the neighborhood that you are exploring.

The most popular neighborhoods for food tours are Le Marais, Saint Germain-des-Prés, and Montmartre. Saint Germain, is also very reputed for its pastries and chocolate tours, like this popular, top-rated Saint Germain Pastry and Chocolate Walking Tour. Click here to find the best food tours in Paris.

GET INSPIRED DURING THE MONTH OF PHOTOGRAPHY IN PARIS

Paris Nightlife Photography

In Paris, November is the month of Photography and there are numerous fairs and exhibitions to honor the world of cameras, pictures, and great photographers.

In the second week of November (5 – 9 November 2020), the Salon de la photo (Paris Photography Fair) takes place at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles.

Then it’s Paris Photo (12 – 15 November 2020), the world’s biggest photography fair, which takes place under the glass-domed roof of the Grand Palais. Plus there are always many small photo exhibitions, free or for a small fee, where photography passionates can admire the work of some of the most iconic photographers but also new talents.

Also in the Grand Palais, there is the exhibition “Noir et Blanc: une esthétique de la photographie” [Black and White: a photography aesthetic] from 12 to November 2020 to 4 January 2021.

CELEBRATE THE ARRIVAL OF THE NEW BEAUJOLAIS

Wine Tasting in Paris

In November, Paris, and France also celebrate the arrival of the Beaujolais Nouveau (19 November 2020),  when it is possible to taste the latest vintage of this wine everywhere in the city.

This tradition seems to be more popular abroad than in France (we are not particularly fond of this wine…) but it makes just another excuse to toast and celebrate with friends and family. Cheers!

HOT CHOCOLATE AND PEOPLE WATCHING IN A TERRASSE CAFE

chocolate chaud - Paris

When the air gets crisp, it is a good moment to cozy up with a good book and a steaming cup of hot chocolate somewhere picturesque.

The neighborhoods of Le Marais, Saint-Germain-des-Prés, or Montmartre are some good places to find picturesque cafes but there are pretty cafes all around Paris.

If the weather is good, enjoy lounging at one sidewalk terrace café in Paris for people watching. It’s as simple as that.

VISIT AN EXHIBITION

Create your Louvre Guide

At the end of the summer, the new cultural season starts in Paris, usually with many temporary exhibitions in the main museums or art galleries.

This year, some of the exhibitions initially scheduled for the summer have been postponed to the months of October and November due to the pandemic.

The list of exhibitions in Paris in November 2020 looks very interesting, here are our favorites:

Gabrielle Chanel, iconic fashion designer. This is her first retrospective at the Palais Galliera, from 1 October 2020 to 14 March 2021.

The Matisse exhibition at Centre Pompidou, from 21 October 2020 to 22 February 2021.

The origins of the world in Darwin’s century, at Musée d’Orsay, from 10 November 2020 to 14 February 2021.

The Olmecs and the Cultures of the Gulf of Mexico, at the Musée du Quai Branly, from 9 October 2020 to 25 July 2021.

DO THE GRAND TASTING

Wine Tasting in Paris

The Salon Grand Tasting is THE event for wine lovers in November in Paris.

From 27 – 28 November 2020, explore the best of France’s wine regions, and perhaps buy some bottles, in this festival of Great Wines held at the Carrousel du Louvre in Paris.

TIP: Don’t forget your wine suitcase or wine tote bag to bring your best findings back home!

GET CULTURED AT THE MUSEUMS’ NIGHT IN PARIS NOVEMBER 2020

Louvre at night

This year one of the most interesting events of Paris at night – the Nuit des Musées – returns on Saturday 14 November 2020 after being postponed due to the pandemic. Visit your favorite museum for free during this special late-night opening with workshops, shows, and more in addition to their permanent exhibitions.

Usually, the top museums in Paris come with long lines for this special night. For us, it is a good time to look for smaller museums, little gems in Paris that come without the crowds.

HAVE FUN AT THE LANTERN FESTIVAL

Lantern Festival Paris

Feel like experiencing a magical moment in Paris in November? Then, head to the Parc de La Villette (date still to be confirmed) for the Lantern Festival, a beautiful celebration of magic, love, and hope.

Light up your handmade lantern and join the lantern parade along with musicians Zalindê and Doubayabi. After the lit parade across the park, the celebration will wrap up over some Christmas and spicy tea to warm up.

EXPLORE THE FIRST CHRISTMAS MARKETS IN PARIS

Paris Christmas Markets

Around the second half of November, the first Christmas Markets in Paris start to open and some streets start to dress-up for the festive season.

If you like the idea of getting a glimpse of Paris at Christmas time in November without the crowds, have a look at the best Christmas Markets in Paris 2020 to see their opening times this year and program.

NEED MORE IDEAS FOR NOVEMBER IN PARIS?

No problem! Have a look at our articles about October in Paris and also September in Paris, some of the activities proposed in these articles are also a good idea for Paris in November.

Where to Stay in Paris in November

We recommend Booking.com for booking your hotel in Paris. They have a wide variety of accommodation of all kinds and good rates. In addition, they propose the option to cancel for free, most of the time up to 24 hours.


SLEEP WITH EIFFEL TOWER VIEWS

If you have the budget, why not treating yourself with the pleasure of waking up with an amazing Eiffel Tower balcony view?

Some of the best hotels in Paris also come with awesome views of Eiffel Tower, especially beautiful during its night show!

Check out the best hotels with Eiffel Tower Views

The good news is that a cozy room with Eiffel Tower views is not exclusive to the best hotels in Paris. If you are looking for a more local experience, there are also beautiful, fully equipped apartments to rent with amazing Eiffel Tower views

Check out the best apartments with view of Eiffel Tower


HOTELS AT LE MARAIS IN PARIS 4

Le Marais is a central neighborhood in the Seine’s Right Bank perfect to set your base in Paris, especially if you are visiting Paris for the first time. It is beautiful, well connected by the metro, and with many beautiful cafes and restaurant options.

Click here for the best hotels in Le Marais in Paris 4

HOTEL DE JOSEPHINE DE BONAPARTE, Paris 4, $$$$

Located in a former convent, this charming hotel is inspired by Napoleon’s wife, Joséphine de Bonaparte. Its unique decorated rooms are elegant and romantic and its cozy saloons are the perfect place for a last glass of wine.

Click here for the Latest Prices


HOTEL FRANCE LOUVRE, Paris 4, $$$

Hotel France Louvre is a typical Haussmaniann-style hotel located in Le Marais. The rooms are small but cozy, all elegantly furnished in Louis XIV style. Some of them have lovely views over Hôtel de Ville and Tour Saint Jacques.

Click here for the Latest Prices


HOTELS AT SAINT-GERMAIN-DES-PRÉS

The neighborhood of Saint-Germain, in the Left Bank, is a great place to put your luggage down in Paris, especially if you are visiting Paris for the first time. It is picturesque, central, with many entertainments, beautiful cafes and restaurant options.

Click here for the best hotels in Saint-Germain

XRELAIS CHRISTINE; Paris 6, $$$$

This hotel is set in a 16th-century private mansion in the heart of Saint Germain-des-Prés. Its rooms are unique, designed in different styles. Guests can enjoy elegant common spaces, a garden, a spa, and a fitness center.

Click here for the Latest Prices


HOTEL CHAPLAIN PARIS RIVE GAUCHE: Paris 6, $$$

This chic and modern hotel is located only a few meters from Luxembourg Gardens is one of the best mid-range hotels in Saint-Germain. The rooms are fancy and colorful. We especially like its chic dining area and floral courtyard, where you can take your breakfast or a drink.

Click here for the Latest Prices

We hope you enjoyed this Paris in November 2020 quick guide and it helped you plan your November in Paris. Bon voyage!

Click here for the best time to visit Paris

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