As the first of the spring rains start to fall in the southern hemisphere, visitors can watch the land come to life. From the march of the emperor penguins in Antarctica to wildflower-covered mountain sides of Patagonia, spring is the perfect time to go south.
Here’s our list of the best places to visit in November:
- Swim With Whale Sharks Off Mafia Tanzania Take a wild-ocean adventure and go swimming with the largest non-mammal aquatic animal in the world. Averaging 32 feet long and roughly 20,00 pounds, whale sharks are found continuously off Mafia Island in Tanzania. These gentle giants are docile fish and do not pose any danger to humans. In fact, younger whale sharks have been known to play with divers!
- Fly Fishing In Patagonia Discover some of the best fly fishing that the world has to offer on the Rio Grande, in Patagonia. Rio Grande is home to world-record-sized sea-runs of brown trout, and trout fishing experts have blazed the way for anglers at Rio Grande and its tributaries to the north. The fish are abundant here, thanks to fisheries’ commitment to the practice of catch and release.
- Elephants Parading Through Mfuwe Lodge This is not your typical hotel lobby, unless, of course, your hotel lobby usually includes elephants traipsing through like they own the place.
At Mfuwe Lodge, elephants are the annual spectacle as they navigate through the open lobby on a mission to enjoy the mango fruits that have fallen from a tree just on the other side of the property. The tradition began nearly a decade ago by Wonky Tusk (the matriarch named for her backward facing tusk) and continues still today.
- Snow Hill Island and the March of the Emperor Penguins In Antarctica Emperor penguins are the largest species of penguin in the world. Only found in Antarctica, Emperor penguins are also unique because they are the only penguins that breed during the Arctic winter. During this time Emperor penguins journey up to 75 miles to breeding colonies. Snow Hill island in Antarctica is one of only two breeding colonies for these spectacular birds. It is here that 4,000 pairs of Emperor penguins will congregate to produce the next generation of their kind.
- Lamu Cultural Festival Lamu, Kenya is a peaceful tropical town with a relaxed pace of life. For one week the town comes alive as the history and future, beliefs and traditions of Lamu are celebrated. Events include races, competitions, shopping, and dining. Swimmers, runners, and sailors can participate in races and spectators can take in the famous, and most important donkey race. Get a Henna painting, listen to swahili poetry, or play Boa (the oldest game recorded in human history!). Round out your experience with the fantastic traditional swahili cuisine. Settle into the slow and invigorating pace of Lamu.
- Day Of The Dead Throughout South America-The South American Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) is a holiday that takes place over multiple days. It is a time to pray for and remember loved ones that have deceased and a time when the deceased awaken and celebrate with those still living. Colorful and artistic ofrendas (large altars) are built for family and friends to place gifts for the deceased such as their favorite foods, beverages, aztec marigolds, and calaveras (the representation of a human skull usually made out of sugar or clay). Get immersed in the culture of festivities of South America by visiting during the Day of the Dead.
Looking for More Ideas?
Head to New Zealand’s South Island for peak photographic conditions around Lake Tekapo in December or spend the winter holidays playing Tarzan with the chimpanzees of Tanzania’s Mahale Mountains.