October marks the transition to winter time. The night falls earlier, Parisians draw their umbrellas, the trees adorn themselves with orange-toned leaves, and the Haussmann Boulevard is filled with the enticing aromas of hot chestnuts and grilled corn. Autumn also signifies the back-to-school season, and in Paris, it is characterized by a true cultural and festive effervescence. Full of surprises and energy, the capital kicks off the academic year in high gear, and needless to say, there is no shortage of events during this time of the year.
A Cultural Start...
Every third weekend of September, Parisian historical monuments open their doors to the public for free: it's the Heritage Days. More than 16,000 public and private sites participate in these special days, allowing the curious to get to know better the heritage of their city, region, or elsewhere. A multitude of activities for all ages are organized, such as walks, conferences, exhibitions, workshops... A treat for history enthusiasts and tourists alike.
The autumn season is also marked by the International Contemporary Art Fair (FIAC). For several days, the Grand Palais, the Cour Carrée of the Louvre, and the Tuileries host this immense artistic and commercial exhibition, where museum directors, collectors, and international personalities from the world of contemporary art gather.
On the right bank of the Seine, Art Elysées and Design Elysées join forces and take over the 1st and 8th arrondissements, from the Petit Palais to Concorde. If you are a fan of pure contemporary art, this Parisian event is for you! With no less than 70 galleries exhibiting the works of 185 internationally recognized artists, the event grows in size and number of visitors each year. It offers a broad panorama of classic modern and contemporary art, as well as historical post-war design.
Lastly, the unmissable cultural event of autumn is, of course, the Nuit Blanche. Since 2002, culture becomes nocturnal in Paris for a weekend, the first one of October, allowing everyone to discover the extraordinary richness of Paris and its heritage. Artistic creations take over the squares, gardens, museums, schools, and other public places of the city, which exceptionally open their doors for free at night.
... and Entertaining
The arrival of the Beaujolais Nouveau is an occasion to celebrate in many Parisian bars and cafes, participating in the event on the third Thursday of November. The Porte de Versailles also delights wine enthusiasts with the Vignerons Fair held every year during the last weekend of November. Aspiring oenophiles can taste over a thousand different wines... with moderation, of course.
Tennis enthusiasts will be delighted to get up close to the world's best tennis players during the Paris-Bercy Masters. It takes place every year at the Paris Omnisport in Bercy during the second week of November.
For the music lovers among you, be aware that at the beginning of September, the Cité de la Musique and Parc de la Villette come alive with the jazzy notes of a series of concerts by artists from around the world during the Jazz à la Villette festival.
Lastly, the Autumn Fair returns every year from late October to early November, spreading its latest trends in various fields such as decoration, fashion, gardening, cuisine, household appliances, and leisure over ten days. Immense, the fair is like a department store where you can find everything. Whether it's a family outing or a professional visit, the various workshops and activities offered allow for new discoveries and provide ideas for original Christmas gifts or decorations before the rush of the holiday season.