November Suggestions

Old Sep 29th, 2012, 10:40 AM
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November Suggestions

I may have some time in early/mid November for a short trip. I understand the weather will be similar to my Vancouver weather in northern Europe, as well as less daylight hours, and have taken Stockholm, St. Petersburg, London and Berlin off my list. Also Athens and Istanbul as they are just too far away for a brief holiday. "New" is my motto so am thinking of Barcelona and maybe Toledo or Salamanca (have been to Madrid/Andalucia); southern France (have only been to Paris); unsure about Italy (have been several times to Rome/Venice/Florence/CT/lots of Tuscany).

Art, architecture, trying new food, relaxing (I can easily relax in a city) and hopefully, no or little rain, are what I'm aiming for. Would base in a city and take a day trip or two. I'm a fairly energetic traveller.

Your suggestions?
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 11:04 AM
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I think no or little rain any place in europe in Nov - is not going to be a sure thing. In fact, I think at least some rain would be a sure thing for any period of more than 2 or 3 days.

I would focus on a city rather than the countryside - so there is plenty to see/do indoors if necessary. Then if you get a lot of sunshine you can be plesantly surprised.

Stockholm and St Pet are in a whole differnt class from London and Berlin. But I think anything north of the Alps is going to be chilly/rainy.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 11:41 AM
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NY, any thoughts on where to go in southern Europe?
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:09 PM
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I wouldn't necessarily take London off the list. While we normally travel in April/May, September/October, I was in London on business the end of November and the beginning of December a few years ago. While the weather was cool and the days short, it was a wonderful time to be there.

Barcelona should be good but I wouldn't enjoy it for a whole week. What about Barcelona and Lisbon?
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:20 PM
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Art/architecture and you left off St. Petersburg because of the weather? You'll be inside mostly. The Hermitage with its 3 million works not to mention the decoration of the rooms alone; the Peterhof; Katherinehof; Church on the Spilled Blood; Peter and Paul Fortress

Barcelona, yes, and I would not limit myself to any one part of the city, either, in terms of sightseeing.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:28 PM
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St Pet is a wonderful city - but Nov can be full on winter weather. (I was there in early/mid Sept and althouhg the first 2 days were fine it then got cold - like highs in the 40s - with very blustery winds.) So although it's a great city I would not do it then.

Agree London is a great option - as would be Vienna, Prague, Budapest, etc. Have nothing against Barcelona but I wouldn't do for more than 3 or 4 days.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:29 PM
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Last November we spent time in Milan and it was great -- cooler but actually no rain though we were ready for it with trench coats, boots, good jeans as well as dressier slacks. On same trip we were in Ravenna (for a week--I had a mosaic course there) and a few days outside Florence.

I love traveling "off season," though we skipped Venice due to expecting Aqua Alta around that time (we have been numerous times and will go again).

I like your idea of south of France; just can't advise you -- In March 2013 we are thinking of combining Barcelona and southern France.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:30 PM
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Mam, I like your sugg. of Lisbon - have been doing more reading and Lisbon/Sintra or Lisbon/Barcelona are appealing.

I haven't spent any time in London since 1977 and would really like to return, but the thought of spending my entire hol. in rain is just too much like Vancouver (although not this summer and fall!)...

I guess my choices for southern France are Nice and the area, and Sicily for Italy. Eastern Provence just doesn't grab me and I'd ideally like 10 mins. on the ground for Sicily.

Any other thoughts?
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:47 PM
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"I haven't spent any time in London since 1977 and would really like to return, but the thought of spending my entire hol. in rain is just too much like Vancouver (although not this summer and fall!)..."

You are talking about November - it is just as likely to rain in Barcelona or France as in London. You simply can't make this decision on potential weather. One time I was in London/Rome in late Oct/early Nov and London was cool but sunny and wonderful - Rome was COLD and pouring w/ rain. It could just as easily been the reverse.

Decide which city you most want to visit - the weather could be anything . . .
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 12:50 PM
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I'm working while reading replies and so missed Dukey's, NY's and Ann's - thank you, all.

I get your point, Dukey, re the art, but I like to walk a city too and my guess is St P would be just too wintery for me (picky, I know). NY, I'll look further into Prague and Ann, you've got me thinking about Italy again.

And I meant 10 days, not 10 mins, for Sicily...
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 01:54 PM
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SIcily would be a wonderful option but I got the idea that you wanted something that didn't require a lot of travel to get there. It is a long trip but well worth it if you have 10 days.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:08 PM
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How about Puglia? I'm here now and it's lovely. fabulous food and wine, terrific architecture and relatively inexpensive compared to other parts of Italy. Not sure what the weather is like in Nov, but it has been close to 90 these last days with bright sun and blue skies.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:27 PM
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Rain Wet days Av High Temp Av Low Temp
Vancouver 211mm 19 9C 4C
London 64mm 15 10C 5C
Lisbon 93mm 13 17C 11C
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:33 PM
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Well what I was trying to show before the formatting went pear shaped, and the submit button decided to submit itself, is that it's a myth that it rains a lot in London (only 64mm for Nov).

But it is unpredictable, you may have good weather or not, But what is predictable is that there is more to see and do in London than anywhere else in the world.

(the figs are meant to show rainfall, number of wet days, av high temp, and av low temp in November!)
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:36 PM
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those are 'averages' - doesn't have much of anything to do w/ what will happen this year. But going by that London is driest of all
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:47 PM
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Anyway, you won't be able to see the rain because of all the fog...
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:51 PM
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nope -- MUCH more fog in Vancouver - or even where I live in central California, than in London . . .
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 02:52 PM
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BowenLinda,

For a change of pace, think in terms of palm trees and olive oil. Nice on the French Riviera has many museums if you like art, some delicious food and it is well connected by train. Neighboring Menton claims it has the most sunny days per year of any location in Europe.

Sicily is not so well connected with public transporation, but if you kept it simple -- like a combination of Palermo and Cefalu, that might work. Palermo is a less relaxing city than Nice (maybe on a par with Marseilles). I tend to think of the other side of Sicily (Catania/Taormina) as being stormier -- certainly windier.

You are of course trying to thread a needle when it comes picking just the right travel days that won't mean rain for you. But the angle of light in the south generally makes for a lighter, brighter feel, and air temps are usually milder in the destinations you are focusing on. I don't think you are wrong to conceive of a get-away that takes the likelihood of having the weather you like into consideration. There are many places in Europe where palm trees and olive trees will not grow, and many places in Europe where Londoners own second homes or time shares so they can escape to a different weather experience when they've had it with London's gray weather.
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Old Sep 29th, 2012, 03:04 PM
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"There are many places in Europe where palm trees . . . will not grow"

Well, since palm trees grow in far NW Scotland, that isn't much of a criteria . . .
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Old Sep 30th, 2012, 09:50 AM
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Back from work, thank you everyone for your replies.

Mam and Yes, love the sugg. of Sicily and Puglia (both on my McKnight "long" list) but you're right, too much travel time for a short trip.

Sofar, love those stats. Man, I live in a wet city. Very interesting re London, something to think about definitely.

Janis, not so much fog, just hanging, ever-hanging, rain clouds... and we have many palm trees growing here, esp. in our West End. Odd, that.

Matera, thank you, I agree, I think I can combine a new-to-me city with "acceptable" weather. Light is important, isn't it, and Nice, with a day trip or two out, sounds lovely for a short visit.

Lots of great suggestions, thank you, I'll let you know what I decide.

L
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