Weather in Italy in November

Is November a good time to go to Italy?

November falls in the heart of the low season, so the bottom line is it’s the cheapest and easiest time to travel because there are so few other tourists. Add to that a full palette of autumnal hues, almost no queues for major attractions and eating food made for local diners, November is a travel masterpiece. The cold weather is a good excuse to enjoy the indoors, cafes, bars and stores, among the usual Renaissance exhibitions and architectural wonders. In addition, snowfall in the mountains signifies the start of the skiing season and it’s a chance to get to the slopes before everyone else.


Climate in Italy in November

November is a cold and wet month, often with the first major snowfall of the season. Temperatures drop quite significantly and some of the coldest places, outside of cold mountainous areas, drop to 2°C (36°F) and the average high is equivalent to the summer low of 15°C (59°F). Rainfall is heavy and there is now in the mountains, but rarely anywhere outside of the elevated regions.


What’s on in Italy in November

On the first two days of November are two festivals usually not associated with Italy, the first is All Saints Day, or Halloween, and the second All Souls Day, the equivalent of the Day of the Dead in Mexico; these are, nonetheless, well attended and big events. One of the biggest arts festivals of the year, the Romaeuropa Festival is a performance arts festival in the capital of epic proportions; and the Tornino Film Festival and the Bologna Jazz Festival are two additional arts events that are equally popular. Look out for one of the many food and wine festivals dedicated to specific themes, such as the Nougat Toronne Fair, as well as early Christmas markets. 


What to pack for a holiday in Italy in November

November is wet and cool, so pack layers of warm clothing, especially when travelling to the mountains. It is difficult to pack for winter and keep it light because thick clothes are necessary, but it is best to use clothing that is useful in many situations to minimise baggage. It is also best to take dark coloured clothing made of synthetic materials because they dry quicker than cotton or wool and do not show dirt as easily, which is a common problem with the wet weather. 

This means packing long sleeved shirts, thermals, T-shirts to be worn with warm jerseys, synthetic trousers and jeans for smarter occasions; long underwear is important for warmth. A thick waterproof coat will serve its purpose well everywhere and gloves, scarves, hats and waterproof boots or shoes will ensure maximum comfort. People travelling to elevated regions should pack more layers as well as the relevant snow gear.

For footwear, comfortable and amphibian walking shoes are best for the city and sturdy hiking boots or shoes for the country and alpine areas. 

Remember that many churches and monasteries require both men and women to cover up well, and pack something smart for a good restaurant or special event.