I will not deceive you. In the month of November the probability of rain is quite high. For this reason, I want to give you options to take shelter in those days that do not give truce. On those sunny days, take the opportunity to visit the most emblematic monuments without waiting.
When the day threatens rain, go to an art gallery to admire the exhibition of the month. November is also the time for the Roma Europa Festival, which offers various plays, concerts and dance performances. You can also take the opportunity to attend the night show at the Augustus Forum, which lasts until the first week of November. Many plans await you!
1. Explore the Sistine Chapel without the crowds
Visiting the Sistine Chapel is undoubtedly one of the top things to do in Rome. Mind you, depending on the time of year, you may feel like a sardine in a can and not be able to appreciate the beauty of this breathtaking place. I am not exaggerating even a little bit if I say that November is probably the time of year with the least number of tourists. That is, except for November 1, All Saints' Day.
November is a bridge month. It represents the calm before the frenzy of Christmas, a season in which Rome is once again filled to the brim. So, even if the day is gray, rainy or a little colder than usual, it doesn't matter because November will allow you to enjoy Rome almost all to yourself.
Why is November important in the Sistine Chapel?
Did you know that November is an important month in the Sistine Chapel? In this month the frescoes on the ceiling of this sacred place were inaugurated. Specifically, it happened on November 1, 1512. On that day, Michelangelo unleashed his brushes and exhibited, before everyone, his enormous work, a work that you now have the opportunity to admire almost exclusively.
2. Enter St. Peter's Basilica for free and without queues
Entering St. Peter' s Basilica is free, but without queues is already more difficult. However, in November, which is one of the months of the year with fewer tourists, the combination of both factors is possible. Not surprisingly, the basilica is one of the most important tourist attractions of the city, hence, as the entrance is free, it is usually necessary to endure the huge queue.
In November, the queue is much smaller, so especially if you get up early, you can access St. Peter's Basilica without queues and climb the dome of St. Peter's in one go. In this month, it's all advantages!
3. Visit the November exhibitions in the art galleries
If you love art, don't hesitate to explore some of the most interesting art galleries in Rome. It is an excellent plan especially on rainy days in November. You can start your tour at the most famous ones, such as the Borghese Gallery or the National Gallery of Modern Art. These usually enjoy temporary exhibitions, so, who knows, maybe you will like this month's!
The Galleria Doria Pamphilj is another one to have in the chamber, as it is the most important private art gallery in the Italian capital. It also includes the Galleria Spada, which houses a collection of art spanning the 16th and 17th centuries. Finally, note the Palazzo delle Esposizioni, where, apart from temporary exhibitions, holds other events and activities throughout the year, so November was not going to be less.
4. Go to a soccer match
If you are a soccer fan, going to a match in Rome can be the icing on the cake of your trip. Moreover, tickets are much cheaper at this time of year. Not surprisingly, the only way to visit the Stadio Olimpico, home of both clubs, is at a match.
5. Attend the night show at the Forum of Augustus
Summer nights in Rome are special. The warm temperatures allow many of the city's outstanding monuments to host evening shows. Generally, the nightly shows draw the curtain when the temperatures drop. For this reason, I encourage you to take advantage of the last days of the night show performed by the Forum of Augustus. It usually runs until the first week of November, so you still have some time!
If you were impressed by the visit to the Roman Forum, this show will captivate you. The Forum of Augustus is transformed into an incredible multimedia show that retraces the history of this important historical vestige. The play of light and sound allows the spectator to be transported to what this place was like during Ancient Rome. I recommend you make sure of the passes, but usually there are three during the month of November: at 19:15, 20:15 and 21:15 hours. It is definitely worth it!
6. Binge on panettones, the Italian Christmas sweet par excellence
In Rome you can not only eat the best ice cream or the best pizzas. For some years now, in the supermarkets there are some sweets that cannot be missed on the eve of Christmas. After seeing (and eating) them year after year, we have integrated panettones into our Christmas tradition, but the truth is that these brioche-like sweets are of Italian origin. They usually make their appearance in Italy around November, so get ready to feast!
The best thing about panettones is that they are available in different varieties and formats. You can find them with raisins and candied fruit, with chocolate, with white chocolate, with powdered sugar... You won't have any trouble finding them, as they are everywhere, adorning the windows of **Rome'**s pastry shops. Very similar is the pandoro, another Italian pastry more geometric than the panettone.
Best bakeries in Rome where to buy a panettone
As I say, in virtually any bakery or pastry shop in Rome you will find these delicious sweets. Of course, also in supermarkets, although, of course, it is not such an artisanal or homemade option. Here are some of the best bakeries in Rome where to buy a panettone:
- Antico Forno Roscioli. It is one of the mythical of Rome, indispensable in all travel guides. It is in Via dei Chiavari, 34.
- Grué. A pastry shop in Trastevere that sells panettone all year round. It is in Viale Regina Margherita, 95.
- Pasticceria Bompiani. The most awarded and, for many, the best pastry shop in Rome. A must. It is at Largo Benedetto Bompiani, 8.
7. Celebrate St. Cecilia's day in the Trastevere district
November 22 is the feast day of St. Cecilia, one of the most venerated martyrs of the Italian capital in the Catholic Church. In the year 822 her body was found in the Catacombs of St. Callixtus and, from there, it was transferred to the basilica that today bears her name located in the district of Trastevere.
Visiting this church on November 22 can be a very moving experience, since the Basilica of St. Cecilia pays homage to this saint, patron saint of musicians. If you happen to be passing by on your walk, don't hesitate to take a look at the activities in her honor.
8. Get to know the Roma Europa Festival
One of the most important festivals in Rome takes place in autumn. So you are in luck because, for sure, if you travel to Rome in November, you will be in time to attend some of the scheduled activities. The Roma Europa Festival is a cultural event that includes different plays, musicals, performances, dance, etc.
It covers different locations depending on the performance. Some of the venues included in this festival are the Auditorium Parco della Musica, Teatro Vascello, Mattatoio or Teatro Biblioteca Quarticciolo, among many others. The best thing about the Roma Europa Festival is that there is a show every day, so one of them will coincide with the days of your visit to the Italian capital.
9. Attend the Day of the Armed Forces
Every November 4th is a national holiday in Italy, commemorating Italy' s victory in the First World War. It is a day of marked patriotic character in which certain events of interest take place such as aerial exhibitions of the Italian army, ceremonies of changing of the guard, etc.
I will not tell you to change your travel dates just to coincide with this event, but if you are in Rome, it may be of interest to approach some points of the city. For example, the Vittoriano Monument, as the President of the Republic usually comes to lay a wreath and the expectation is at its peak.
10. Visit Santa Claus' house
You don't need to travel to Lapland to meet Santa Claus! You can do it during your trip to Rome. This plan is perfect if you travel to Rome with kids, but you can also do it even with friends if you travel to Rome at Christmas because, I don't know about you, but I love everything that smells like Christmas. Since November, Santa's little house is installed in the Castello Di Lunghezza, located on the outskirts of Rome so it is one of the excursions you can do from Rome.
It is a castle with centuries and centuries of history that, every Christmas, has a guest of honor in his chambers. During your visit you will have the opportunity not only to shake hands with Santa Claus (and pull his beard!), but also to deposit your letters in the post office, visit the toy factory, meet the snow fairy and even see where Santa Claus sleeps. A great plan, don't you think?
The Castello Di Lunghezza becomes a theme park during November and December where there will be shows with polar bears, elves, dolls and Christmas trees. Admission is around 16 €, although children from 2 to 11 years old can benefit from a reduced rate. Children up to 2 years old pay nothing.
How to get to Santa Claus' house?
Castello Di Lunghezza is located on Via Tenuta del Cavaliere no. 230. You can take a regional train from the Tiburtina terminal. Get off at Lunghezza station. The journey time is about 15 minutes. From Lunghezza, you only have a couple of minutes walk.
Temperatures in Rome in November
The weather in Rome in November is very variable and the beginning of the month has nothing to do with the end. While in the first days of November you may not even need a coat to walk in the street, by the end of November you will certainly need not only a thicker jacket, but also a scarf, gloves and an umbrella.
On the warmest days, you can enjoy daytime temperatures around 16°C. However, as it gets warmer, you will notice that the highs do not go above 10 ºC. That, my friends, is cold. Not to mention the rain, which tends to be a constant almost every other day.
We recommend taking a look at a historical weather chart to get an idea of what the weather will be like on your trip to Rome in November. If you look at the chart, the minimum temperature that can be reached is 7 ºC. It is a full-fledged winter, so it is best to be proactive when planning your trip to Rome and bring enough warm clothes. And finally, don't forget to read the post things to see and do in Rome so you can plan your trip as accurately as possible.