Ah Paree: the City of Love, the City of Light, and one of the best places to see the fall foliage in Europe. Well, that is, if you’re planning to visit Paris in October, of course! Here’s your guide to the French capital in the early autumn; what to wear, where to go, and all that you simply must see!
Paris weather in October
Shorter days, frequent cloud cover, and cooler weather are the only two guarantees when it comes to the weather in Paris in the early autumn. Average temperatures are around 12 degrees Celsius… But don’t let that put you off! After all, this is one of the European shoulder seasons, meaning fewer crowds and much lower prices than in the summer months.
What to wear in Paris in October
With the winter just around the corner comes a guarantee of ever-changing weather and that in-between summer dresses and winter jackets phase. As such, should you plan on visiting Paris in the fall, I recommend packing lots of layers. That is to say, jackets, cardigans, paired with shorter sleeves. While the air is crisp outside, museum spaces and the metro can get pretty toasty!
Be sure to also bring along a pair of waterproof boots and a light rain jacket. Though Paris may be pretty when the leaves begin to change, wind speeds can pick up rapidly and light showers throughout the day are not unheard of.
What to do in Paris in October
Everyone has heard of the Mona Lisa in the Louvre and of the clock in Musée d’Orsay. But did you know that you can see one of the finest Italian art collections in the Musée Jacquemart André? Or that you can visit the most Instagrammable staircase in Paris in the form of Musée Gustave Moreau?
Vendages de Montmartre (Montmartre wine harvest)
Every year, a wine festival and bottle auction is held in Le Clos Montmartre (i.e. the best vineyard in Paris!) This year, the fête will be taking place between the 10th and 14th of October. As such, be sure to head to the 18th arrondissement to enjoy the wine festival and get the rare opportunity to enter inside the vineyard for yourself!
Now that the crowds are fewer, this is the perfect time to go it alone and get to know the city on a local level… All by yourself! So pack up your day bag, grab your camera and head out to one of the lesser-known corners of the French capital. After all, it’s in these moments which Paris truly reveals itself to you…
On this night, there will also be other installations for you to enjoy. Four landmarks/ areas of the city (Île Saint Louis, La Villette, La Porte Dorée, and Invalides) will all have open-air displays to enjoy and will be known as ‘constellations’ on the night.
From the parks of Paris to the creepers growing up the buildings along the wide boulevards, there are pretty autumn leaves and fall tones to be spied around nearly every corner. So grab your camera and head out on an adventure to see the best autumn leaves in the French capital!
Stay up all night at the Nuit Blanche
Another annual tradition during Paris in October is that of the ‘Nuit Blanche’. Literally translated as the ‘white night,’ on the 6th October quite literally hundreds of Parisian attractions, museums, and cultural centres will remain open all night.
Marvel at some art at the International Contemporary Art Fair
Known as ‘FIAC’ for short, the 45th version of the art fair will be held at the Grand Palais from the 19th of October until the 9th 0f November. Featuring all kinds of installations, modern art pieces, and contemporary design from all over the world, this is a can’t-be-missed for all fans of art exhibitions.
Enjoy Halloween at Disneyland Paris
If you’re a fan of all things costume-related and dressing up for Halloween, then you may well want to head out on the ReR A and take the train to Disneyland Paris. After all, the entirety of the month of October is dedicated to all things spooky in the land of fairytales. And, if you want to purchase your ticket in advance, then you can do so here!
Salon du Chocolat
As its name suggests, this festival is dedicated to all those with a sweet tooth! From the 31st of October until the 4th of November, the salon is an annual trade fair comprising of some 500 participants from over 60 countries. As a result, you definitely shouldn’t miss this 20,000-metre squared exhibition space if you’re a fan of all things chocolate!