Paris in the fall is wonderful and my favorite time to visit. The air is crisp and cool and the summer crowds have left.
Now is the time when savvy travelers hit the city. Whether you’re spending 4 days in Paris or you’re just in town on a short layover, fall is the perfect time for a visit. You’ll get to experience more local cultural events and pay less while doing so. More importantly, you get to enjoy this city as the locals do.
While there are hundreds of reasons to visit Paris in the fall, I’ve put together my top 13 just for you.
1. The tourists are gone
Visiting Paris in the fall means that you’ll arrive long after the hordes of tourists have gone back home and the locals have returned from vacation. The city is back to business, as usual, and you can experience what Paris is really like.
As an added bonus, you will enjoy shorter lines and wait times at nearly all major attractions. Plus, you’ll have an easier time getting reservations for both the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. Museums, monuments, and cathedrals will also be less crowded.
Aside from the benefits involved with visiting all the touristy stuff, you’ll also find yourself alongside the locals as you go about your day. Visiting Paris in the fall is the perfect opportunity to interact with locals and maybe even make some new friends.
2. Lower hotel prices
If you’ve been to Paris before, then you know visiting is not cheap. But if you travel outside of the peak summer tourist season, like in the fall, you can save some serious money on hotel costs.
October is considered part of the shoulder season in Paris, which pretty much includes just August, October, and April. Shoulder season is a great time to travel to just about any destination, not just the French capital. Traveling in the shoulder season gets you the majority of the benefits of the high season but without the crowds and high prices.
If you’re able to travel in November, you can save even more money on hotel costs. Weather will be a bit colder than October, but November is the low season in Paris. You’ll find some of the best prices of the year in Paris in November.
With the lower hotel prices during the fall, I encourage you to stay as close to the city center as possible. Paris is so walkable, so if you can be close to the action, you’ll likely be able to walk from place to place.
In the event, you have to stay out a bit further than you’d like, just remember the trains in Paris are excellent as well.
3. Lower airfare prices
If you’re arriving from the United States, airfare prices to Paris in the fall are significantly lower than in the busy summer months. Even from as far as Los Angeles, tickets can be found for as little as $305 roundtrip.
As always, the more flexible you are with your travel dates, the better deal you will get.
Airfare to Paris in the fall tends to be the lowest in October, November, and the early part of December. Once the holiday season is near, airfare prices will increase significantly. So avoid traveling over the holidays if you can.
In the event that you must travel over the holidays, book airfare as soon as possible for the best deals.
4. Fall foliage
Like many places in the Northern Hemisphere, autumn brings with it an array of vibrant fall colors that blanket the city. You’ll get to witness the city’s boldest and brightest colors if you time your visit for October or November.
If you’re at all into photography, you will enjoy photographing the various monuments and neighborhoods in Paris in the fall. The changing leaves will add an extra special element to your photographs.
5. Jardin des Tuileries
Jardin des Tuileries is a public garden located in the 1st Arrondissement between the Louvre and the Palace of the Concorde. It is one of the best spots in Paris to see fall colors.
Jardin des Tuilleries is the perfect place to have a picnic or just go for a walk. In the fall especially, it’s a peaceful place to get away from the noisier parts of the city. If you arrive early in the morning or later in the day, you may have the place all to yourself.
You can also enjoy the garden’s many statues, fountains, and ponds. All of which makes an excellent subject for photography.
The Montmartre neighborhood of Paris is one of my favorites, especially during the early morning hours, or at sunset. In my opinion, this is one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in the city.
In the fall, the Montmartre’s photogenic streets will be lined with trees displaying their most beautiful fall colors. This is a must-visit area of the city if you’re in town during October or November.
If possible, try to be in Montmartre at sunrise or sunset. There is a large overlook down the steps from the Sacre Coeur where you can see a large section of the city. It’s especially beautiful at golden hour in the early morning and evening.
7. Jazz on the Seine
If you’re a music fan, and especially a jazz fan, you’ll love the Jazz on the Seine music festival held in October. The event is held at 25 different clubs across the city featuring over 450 artists and 180 concerts. The event runs for about two weeks with most concerts being held in the evenings.
This year the event is running from October 11, 2019, to October 26, 2019. Tickets to Jazz on the Seine will cost 40 Euro for 3 concerts.
8. Hot chocolate at Angelina
Fall is the perfect time of year to warm up with a cup of the famous hot chocolate from the Angelina Tea House on Rue de Rivoli. Ask any local where to find the best hot chocolate in Paris, and they will surely tell you, Angelina.
The Angelina Tea House sources their cocoa from Africa and the hot chocolate is served thick and rich. You can also enjoy their pastries, which I hear are every bit as good.
Angelina Tea House is located just across the street from Jardin des Tuileries. They are open daily opening most days at 7:30 a.m. On Fridays and Saturdays they open at 8:30 a.m.
9. Halloween at Disneyland Paris
While Halloween is not much celebrated in France, Disneyland Paris does celebrate the popular American holiday.
From September 28, 2019, to November 3, 2019, the park will be decorated with the Halloween theme. There will also be special events, souvenirs, snacks, and performances to get you into the Halloween spirit.
Disneyland Paris is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. most days. The park may open earlier or close earlier on some days. Admission for adults begins around $100.
10. Visit the Catacombs
If you don’t have the time to make the trip out to Disneyland Paris but still want to add something a bit spooky to your visit, head to the Paris Catacombs.
The underground catacombs in Paris hold the remains of over 6 million people. According to the Les Catacombs des Paris website, the catacombs date back to the 18th century. Apparently, there were health problems related to the city’s cemeteries which led officials to begin transferring their contents underground.
If you’re able to visit the Paris Catacombs, I strongly encourage you to take the guided tour or purchase the audioguide. The history of the catacombs is fascinating and will make the visit much more enjoyable.
The Paris Catacombs are open Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. The lightest crowds are found in the evenings from 6:00 p.m. to closing at 8:30 p.m. You are advised to purchase tickets online ahead of time to avoid waiting in line.
11. Nuit Blanche, or White Night
Nuit Blanche is an annual event held in Paris that celebrates contemporary art. All across the city, there will be exhibitions, installations, performance, and concerts that explore contemporary art.
This event takes place in public spaces, at cultural establishments, and also at the city’s many famous monuments. There is also a parade that will run from the Place de la Concorde to Bastille.
This unique and fun event runs from 7:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. The event is free to the public. Public transportation will also be available all night, which will also be free to the public.
12. Paris Fashion Week
If you happen to be in Paris in September, you’ll get to experience Paris Fashion Week. Each fall designers show their most recent collections for ready-to-wear, men’s wear, and haute couture at venues across the city. The more famous brands like Chanel, Givenchy, and Dior, often host their events at the city’s famous museums and monuments.
While it is incredibly difficult to get into the shows at Paris Fashion Week (unless you are in the industry) there are occasionally shows open to the public. Check the Paris Fashion Week schedule for details. the city is a fun place to be while the event is going on.
If you’d like to experience the event without a ticket, the majority of the action will be in the 1st Arrondissement near Jardines des Tuileries. If you hand out in the area you are bound to see designers, models, and celebrities coming and going to and from events in the area.
I would also recommend frequenting the city’s hottest restaurants and bars. You are likely to be surrounded by some good-looking, well-dressed people. My most important travel tip here, be sure to dress nicely as well if you’re trying to fit in.
This year Paris Fashion Week runs from September 23, 2019, to October 1, 2019.
13. Jardin du Luxembourg
Another great spot to view fall foliage in Paris is at the Jardin du Luxembourg. This is another public garden with various plants, flowers, and trees. Like the city’s many other parks, Jardin du Luxembourg is especially beautiful in the fall when the leaves have turned.
The gardens are found in the 6th Arrondissement and admission is free. They are open daily from 7:00 a.m. to one hour before sunset in the summer and 8:00 a.m. to one hour before sunset in the winter.
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Eden FitePart-time Traveler | Dog Lover | Avoider of Crowds
I help people use their vacation days to see the world.