Summer’s over and it’s la rentrée in France – the time to return to work and school after the long, hot summer holidays and to harvest the grapes for wine. There’s plenty going on this season!
National events in Autumn
Rugby World Cup: 8 September – 28 October 2023
Semaine du Gout – Taste Week: 10-16 October. 2022. Discover the art of gastronomy with cooking classes, tastings, and entertainment. Details: www.legout.com
1st November La Toussaint – All Saints’ Day. All over France, pots of chrysanthemums are placed on graves as loved ones who have passed on are remembered.
11th November Armistice – commemorative services will be held all over France in honour of those who lost their lives in World War I and other wars.
Beaujolais Nouveau: the new season’s wine arrives on the third Thursday of November each year and the festivities start at midnight on Wednesday. Cafés, bars, and restaurants all over France encourage a taste!
Beaune: Wine Auction (Burgundy). 17-19 November 2023. Founded in 1443, the former charitable hospital Hospices de Beaune is now a museum. During its long existence, many donors bequeathed vineyards to the Hospices. In 1859, for the first time, the wines of the new vintage from these holdings were sold at auction. Now the hospices de Beaune wine auction is a major moment of Burgundian pageantry and the focal point for launching the new vintage plus tasting events. Book online at www.beaune-tourism.com
Paris – Le Carousel du Louvre Art Fair, 20-22 October 2023. Shop for art in the heart of Paris and see the extraordinary artworks of artists including Ragnhild Monsen, tapestry maker.
Paris Nuit Blanche is held annually on the first Saturday night in October. Museums, public buildings, monuments, swimming pools, cinemas, parks, universities, and historic sites are open to the public all night – an art and culture party! Details: quefaire.paris.fr/nuitblanche
Paris – Fetes des Vendanges, 11-15 October 2023. This is one you definitely should not miss if you’re in Paris at this time. A celebration of the wine made in the secret vineyard of Paris, with dance, food, fireworks, and a lot of fun. This event has been going since 1934! Read our review of the Fetes des Vendanges here.
Picardy, Amiens: Grand Rederie Amiens – the second largest flea market in France held first Sunday every October. www.grande-rederie-amiens.com
Book a 2024 CroisiEurope cruise before 30 September and get 15% off all Europe cruises – use code “EARBOOTRAVEL” at www.croisieurope.co.uk
Catch the extraordinary Eva Jospin exhibition at the Palace of the Popes. Monumental cardboard installations including a “palazzo” that’s strangely dreamlike, and utterly mesmerising. Until 7 Jan 2024. Working with cardboard, the monumental sculptures are beautiful and astonishing.
Cultival and the Musée de l’Armée – will open a new immersive night-time sound and light experience in the heart of the 17th century Dôme des Invalides September 22, 2023. Places are limited, tickets at: aura-invalides.com
The Chateau de Chantilly (Oise) Plant Days event brings together nearly 200 nurserymen and exhibitors from all over France and Europe. October 6-8, 2023
America celebrates Halloween – in Moselle they celebrate Rommelbootzennaat – the night of the grinning beets! This traditional festival with Celtic origins which takes place all over the department. Traditionally celebrated on October 31, the eve of All Saints’ Day, it marked the end of the luminous season and the beginning of the dark season. For one night, it was believed, the door between the world of the living and that of the dead was open…
Now celebrated from October 21 to November 5, some people light candles and place them in a hollowed-out beet or pumpkin!
Have a listen to our Autumn in France podcast
Christmas is coming…
Christmas lights to be switched on in Paris around 25 November 2023
We’ll bring you lots more Christmas info in the Winter issue of The Good Life France Magazine (subscribe here for free).
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