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Paris in October [2020] Quick Guide by a Local

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10/07/20

October in Paris [2020]

In October, Paris is a great place to be. The summer crowds are gone, people are more relaxed, and when the avenues and parks take on their autumn reflections, and the soft light of the street lamps sets aglow the carpet of fallen leaves, it’s an inspiring sight. As the summer heat slowly fades, the wine and food festivals are also back to town.

Parisians are fond of October in Paris and they choose this month to explore the countryside or the small towns near Paris.

If you are going to visit Paris in October, you can expect to be in for a treat. Here is our guide to making the most of your time in Paris in October 2020.

Gardens Rodin Museum

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PARIS TRIP PLANNER

Practical Info

» Basics: Language is French but English is widely spoken; Currency is Euro

» Paris Travel Guide

» Plan: Paris Travel Planner; check out when is the Best Time to Visit Paris;

» Flying to Paris: find the best prices and book your flight tickets with CheapoAir.com

» Paris by Train: find the best prices and book your train tickets with Trainline

» Where to Stay: Best Districts to Stay in Paris

» Find your Bearings in Paris: Districts of Paris Quick Guide

» Getting around: Metro of Paris Quick GuideParis by Bike Guide

» Top-Rated Paris Tours & Tickets:

Want skip-the-line access and awesome discounts at museums & attractions in Paris? Get your hands on a Paris Museum Pass!

» Food & Drinks: Paris Food Guide

» Side Trips: Versailles Quick Guide, check out the Best Day Trips from Paris

Is Paris in October Busy? Crowds Forecast

In October the days are shorter and it gets crisp but not many realize when planning their autumn trip that October in Paris is high season. In general, the low season is considered to run from 1 November to 31 March and the high season from 1 April to 31 October.

Sure, there are lesser crowds than during Summer in Paris but when visiting Paris in October it is still a good idea to book hotels and main attractions well in advance.

Also, beware that in 2020 kids will have school holidays from 19 October to 4 November (vacances de la Toussaint) and it is common that families from other parts of France travel to Paris for a cultural trip. If you decide to come during this period, start booking things right now, especially if you need train tickets from /to Paris.

Below we list the Paris main attractions you will need advance tickets for and have added links to my favorite trusty providers for your convenience.

SCHOOL HOLIDAYS IN FRANCE OCTOBER 2020. As mentioned above, in October 2020 kids will have school holidays from Saturday 19 October to Monday 4 November (Vacances de la Toussaint). In France, it is common that the parents take a week off to do a family trip to Paris or other parts of France. This means that during this period hotels tend to be full and the prices of train tickets are higher than usual. If you want to visit Paris in October from Saturday 19 October to Monday 4 November book everything well in advance!

Weather in October in Paris

In Paris, October is the start of fall and you can expect mild temperatures, shorter days but good hours of sunshine, and a reasonable amount of dry days, with the occasional shower.

The average temperature in Paris in October is 17C maximum 11C minimum with a 13% probability of rainfall. As the month progresses, the temperatures get cooler but during the last years, October was a great month for long walks, outdoor activities, and weekend getaways from Paris.

What to Wear in Paris in October 2020

Paris Packing List Fall Winter

What to wear in Paris in October? In Paris, October is mostly a fall month. The key to dressing in Paris in October is layers.

During the day, some people may be comfortable in short sleeves but later in the evening, you will be happy to have an extra layer or two.

It is also the time to rescue your jeans and long trousers. Forget the sandals at home and bring comfortable closed shoes or sneakers with socks.  

What to pack for Paris in October? For October, have a look at our Fall /Winter packing lists here below. Sunglasses are also good and a small, foldable umbrella is also recommended.

Best Tips for Visiting Paris in October

If this is your first time in Paris, and you plan on visiting many tourist attractions consider the purchase of a Paris pass to save time and money. Check out this Paris Pass Comparison to find the best tourist pass for you.

Alternatively, buy skip-the-line tickets for the top tourist attractions.

Leave some float in your daily schedule, especially for the outdoorsy activities. If it is rainy outside you may want to review your plan. Check out some fun things to do during a rainy day in Paris (just in case).

Need insurance for France? Be sure to check France travel insurance rates and coverage with our recommended provider, SafetyWing.

Best things to Do in Paris in October 2020

If you are visiting Paris in October for the first time, you may want to tick some Paris top tourist attractions off your bucket list. The itineraries below are thought for Paris first-timers and cover the main attractions in Paris as well as the most iconic neighborhoods:

Apart from all these places and other beautiful sights that you will find in our Paris Travel Blog, these are some seasonal things to see and do when you visit Paris in October 2020:

GET THE MOST OF PARIS AT NIGHT DURING THE NUIT BLANCHE

Eiffel Tower Paris

One of the main events in Paris in October is the Nuit Blanche (the sleepless night). This night festival in Paris is based on the Saint Petersburg White Nights and it usually takes place on the first Saturday of October (this year on 3 October 2020),

This is a great opportunity to enjoy Paris at night. During the Nuit Blanche, contemporary artists take over the City of Light from dusk till dawn: huge artworks, light installations, sensory experiences, and a great atmosphere for a night to remember.

Each year a different topic is proposed. For example, last year the Nuit Blanche was dedicated to “movement” and “circulation”, with many artists moving around the city with dynamic performances and shows. For the moment, we don’t know the details for 2020, it’s a surprise!

EXPLORE THE GIANT MURALS IN THE EAST OF PARIS

Paris 13 - Street Art

Apart from its iconic monuments and Haussmannian architecture, the city is a playground for street art lovers. If you are interested in Street Art, head to the east of Paris, there’s a huge collection of giant murals by the best national and international street artists along the Boulevard Vincent Auriol (nicknamed the Champs Elysées of Street Art) and the streets nearby.

Learn about the Giant Murals Program and pick our free self-guided walking tours (with map!) in this article about Street Art in Paris 13.

EXPLORE PARIS IN OCTOBER BY BIKE

Canal de l'Ourcq by Bike

October is a great month to explore Paris by bike, the weather in Paris in October is perfect for touring the city on two wheels.  

Check out this Paris by Bike Quick Guide with all the do’s and don’ts to navigate the city on a bike plus some ideas of bike itineraries. If you are interested in exploring beyond Paris, we recommend doing Versailles by bike or the wonderful trail along Canal de l’Ourcq.

GET FESTIVE AT THE MONTMARTRE’S GRAPE HARVEST FESTIVAL

Montmartre Harvest Festival
Montmartre Harvest Festival

The Fête des Vendanges (Wine Harvest Festival), is a five-day celebration of the grape harvest at Montmartre’s one remaining vineyard.

This is one of the most popular food festivals in Paris (yep, there’s also lots of food!) and it takes place each October (7–11 October in 2020) in the streets of Montmartre around the Sacré Coeur.

Of course, you can buy some bottles of the Montmartre wine (Clos Montmartre) which is quite expensive. But there are also many food and drink stalls with great deals and also music and street performances.

The Montmartre’s Fête des Vendanges is one of the most attended food festivals in Paris so we recommend going during the week if possible.

TIP: Don’t forget your wine suitcase or wine tote bag to bring your best findings back home!

GET TO THE PARKS TO SOAK IN THE COLORS OF PARIS

Paris in the Fall
Paris in the Fall

October is our favorite month for a stroll in the parks of Paris. Enjoy the changing colors of fall with a long walk in the Luxembourg Gardens, the Tuileries Gardens, or the more eccentric Bois de Vincennes in the east and Bois de Boulogne in the west.

Stop by a guinguette (small kiosk some tables outside) and get a hot drink when it gets crisp, walk in the leaves, or simply enjoy the fresh autumn air.

STOCK UP YOUR WINE CABINET WITH THE BEST CHAMPAGNE

Sunset Champagne Fontainebleau

One of our favorite things to do in Paris in October is a day trip or weekend getaway to the region of Champagne to stock up our wine cabinet for the following months.

A Champagne day trip from Paris in October is always beautiful, with the rolling hills covered by the autumn colors. If you want to visit the champagne cellars of the most famous Maisons like Moët-Chandon or Veuve Clicquot on the weekend book well in advance.

If you prefer to stay closer, some villages in the region of Hauts-de-France located around Meaux (Ile-de-France) also have the right to produce champagne. To avoid the Paris crazy traffic, take a train to Meaux and rent your car there. From Meaux, the road (D603 and D402) is dotted with small producers that sell good champagne for better prices. Have a look around the villages of Charly-sur-Marne and Crouttes-sur-Marne, most of them also propose champagne tastings.

GET SWEET AT THE SALON DU CHOCOLAT

Chocolate in Paris

This fair, you guessed well, is all about chocolate and it attracts every year chefs chocolatiers, designers, confectioners, chocolate experts and of course chocolate lovers!

The Salon du Chocolat is set at Parc des Expositions de la Porte de Versailles – 1, place de la Porte de Versailles – Paris 15, this year from 21 October to 25 October 2020. Apart from some chocolate tasting and buying, the Paris Chocolate Festival proposes other activities and shows, always related to the world of chocolate.

EXPLORE THE PETITE CEINTURE OF PARIS

Petite Ceinture Paris

The Petite Ceinure of Paris (the Little Belt of Paris) is an ancient railway that circumnavigated the city. With the construction of the Parisian metro, the Petite Ceinture fell into disuse and was abandoned.

A few years ago, the City of Paris recovered some sections of the Petite Ceinture to be used as public green spaces great for a stroll. Some sections still keep part of the tracks and some old stations and walking on the railroads is a fun activity to do in Paris in October.

VISIT THE SMALL TOWNS NEAR PARIS

Senlis, France

If you are spending 3 days in Paris or more, grab a train and explore the French countryside. There are many cute small towns near Paris very easy to reach by train and well worth a day trip from the capital. Provins and Chantilly are the most famous but there are many more!

CELEBRATE HALLOWEEN IN PARIS 2020 AT DISNEYLAND PARIS

Disneyland Paris France

Truth to be told, Parisians are not fans of celebrations like Halloween and there are not many events about it in the city. If you are visiting Paris in late October, Disneyland Paris will be your best bet to celebrate Halloween.

Disneyland Paris always offers a special show for Halloween so get ready for a scary Disneyland Paris Hallowing night with Ursula and all the other Disney’s witches and bad guys.

Click here to book your Disneyland Paris tickets

NEED MORE IDEAS FOR OCTOBER IN PARIS?

Check out our posts about Paris in September and also Paris in November, most of the activities proposed in these months are also good for October in Paris.

Where to Stay in Paris in October

We recommend Booking.com for booking your hotel in Paris. They have a wide variety of accommodation of all kinds and good rates. In addition, they propose the option to cancel for free, most of the time up to 24 hours.


SLEEP WITH EIFFEL TOWER VIEWS

If you have the budget, why not treating yourself with the pleasure of waking up with an amazing Eiffel Tower balcony view?

Some of the best hotels in Paris also come with awesome views of Eiffel Tower, especially beautiful during its night show!

Check out the best hotels with Eiffel Tower Views

The good news is that a cozy room with Eiffel Tower views is not exclusive to the best hotels in Paris. If you are looking for a more local experience, there are also beautiful, fully equipped apartments to rent with amazing Eiffel Tower views

Check out the best apartments with view of Eiffel Tower


HOTELS AT LE MARAIS IN PARIS 3

Le Marais in the Right Bank is a beautiful and central neighborhood perfect to set your base in Paris, especially if you are visiting Paris for the first time. It is picturesque, well connected by the metro, and with many beautiful cafes and restaurant options.

Click here for the best hotels in Le Marais in Paris 3

LE PAVILLON DE LA REINE &  SPA, Paris 3, $$$$

Le Pavillon de la Reine is a luxury hotel & spa located at Place des Vosges in the Marais. The rooms are individually decorated and very spacious. Facilities include a spa, fitness center, and hammam. Its beautiful secluded garden is perfect to end your day with a drink.

Click here for the Latest Prices


HOTEL DU PETIT MOULIN, Paris 3, $$$

Located at the heart of Marais and entirely designed by Christian Lacroix, this hotel offers the best combination history + design. Guests can use complimentary bicycles and enjoy free access to the spa at Hotel Pavillon de la Reine, a 10-min walk away.

Click here for the Latest Prices


HOTELS AT THE LATIN QUARTER

If you prefer to stay in the Left Bank, the Latin Quarter is also a good option, usually with less expensive options. Stay close to the Luxembourg Gardens or the Jardin des Plantes but also to lively areas like rue du Mouffetard or the Sorbonne with many bars and restaurants nearby.

Click here for the best hotels in the Latin Quarter in Paris 5

XHOTEL LA LANTERNE; Paris 5, $$$$

Hotel La Lanterne has an excellent location (between Notre Dame and Luxembourg Gardens), attractive rooms, and some great facilities like a spa, pool, or a private garden. Perfect to finish your exploring days in a more relaxing way.

Click here for the Latest Prices


OBSERVATOIRE LUXEMBOURG: Paris 5, $$$

Located close to Luxembourg Gardens, we find its design pretty cool. But of course, it is not all about decoration: the hotel’s comfortable rooms, French Brasserie, modern facilities, and cool staff are the perfect combination for a great stay in Paris.

Click here for the Latest Prices

We hope you enjoyed this Paris in October 2020 quick guide and it helped you plan your October in Paris. Bon voyage!

Join France Bucket List – Our France Travel Planning Facebook Group

You are also welcome to join France Bucket List our France Travel Planning Facebook Group – it is a great resource to enable you to ask questions about your upcoming trip to Paris or France!

France Bucket List - Facebook Group

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