There are some wonderful events in France in October this year. And there’s the added advantage of being without the crowds of the summer vacation. Festivals range from film and art to music and gardens. The French celebrate the end of the annual wine harvest as autumn turns the vineyards deep orange. Check out these events in France in October 2024.

October, 2024:  Wine harvest festivals across France. Check the local tourist offices for celebrations where you are.

To Oct 6, 2024: Les Voiles de Saint Tropez, Saint Tropez, PACA. Around 300 sailing boats, both traditional and modern, gather to race in the Mediterranean. This is one of the last events in France in September so try to make it to catch that last summer sun. It’s a sight to see.

Les Voiles d'antibes event with two old yachts, sails at full stretch in blue sea in front of Antibe's castle and fort in background
Les Voiles d’Antibes © Frank Follet Photography

To Nov 3, 2024: La Gacilly Photo Festival is a wonderful outdoor photo festival. For three months, hundreds of large format photos are displayed in the parks, green maze, squares and streets of the small town in Morbihan, Brittany.

La Gacilly, Brittany, outdoor photo festival showing big board withexplanation in shady park and boards with photos behind
La Gacilly Photo Festival

To Nov 3, 2024: International Garden Festival at Chaumont-sur-Loire château in the Loire Valley is a fabulous, huge Festival, the Chelsea Flower Show of France. The Château and grounds are lovely and the festival of a series of gardens from international designers always delivers some surprises.

To Dec, 2024: Paris Autumn Festival is a huge arts events, taking in every discipline and taking place in different venues throughout Paris. Around 50 events cover the new and the avant-garde. It was created in 1972 by Michel Guy under the impetus of Georges Pompidou who wanted Paris to become a cultural capital. He succeeded; today around 150,000 people attend one of the events.
Please Note: Exact dates to be decided.

Opening Evening of Paris Festival showing classical lit up building at night to right, lit up huge tree and lawn with festival goers sitting and standing
Opening Evening of Paris Festival

To Jan 5, 2025: The Lyon Contemporary Art Biennale was created in 1991. New contemporary artists, from sculptures to painters, photographers to video makers are represented. Three separate platforms are spread between the Contemporary Art Museum and La Sucrière on Quai Rambaud, La Veduta, a cultural laboratory with exhibitions and artists’ residencies, and Résonance, the biennial’s fringe event, devoted to the Rhône-Alpes art scene with performances and concerts. It alternates with the Dance Biennial which was created in 1984.

To Jan 5, 2024: Chartres en lumières sees this wonderful city illuminated for its annual festival of light. It’s nightly so there’s no excuse to miss it.  

Mediatheque in Chartres seen from fountains in the ground. spectacular building in background lit up with spectacular colours
Mediatheque in Chartres © F. Delauney Spectaculaire, allumeurs d’images

Events in France starting in October 2024

Touraine-Amboise Vineyards with lush vines taking up half the picture and small stone hut in background
Tourain-Amboise vineyards Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Oct 1-6, 2024: The Great Bulwark (Grand Pavois), La Rochelle, Charente-Maritime, Nouvelle-Aquitaine. This impressive and important international nautical fair fills Minimes Harbour. Check out more than 800 exhibitors, look at the boats, try one out and buy it! On Saturday Sept 23, there’s a huge pyro-digital show, Voiles de Nuit.

La Rochelle Bulwark boat festival with lots of yachts and boats in waters with flags flying from masts and old buildings in distance
La Rochelle Bulwark Festival © JMR

Oct 2-6, 2024: British Film Festival, Dinard, Ille-et-Vilaine, Brittany. Go British in Dinard at this great festival where awards are given and new films showcased. 5 different cinemas give you a comprehensive look at the British film industry. There are 6 films in the main competition, premiers, short films and more for the 30,000 fans at this event.

Oct 1-Nov 3, 2024: Disneyland Paris begins its Halloween Festival with Disney villains roaming the streets. On October 31 Disney’s Halloween Party takes over the park from 8pm to 2am. Book early and expect lots of families.

Disneyland Paris Halloween 2023 with wicked lady in middle, man in top hat to one side and witch to other
Disneyland Paris at Halloween 2023 © Disneyland

Oct 5-6, 2024: Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. Longchamp in Paris is the chic setting for the equally chic race. It’s a great racecourse with 500 screens for those not in the centre of the action. The ‘Most Beautiful Duo’ competition is worth winning; you get prizes which include a trip to Qatar and Longines watches. Racing is almost an afterthought.

atar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe Horse winning sinlehorse with jockey making fist in air gesture and standing highon saddle; daytime on grass
Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe © Antoine/Wikimedia

Oct 6, 2024: Rederie d’Amiens. This great annual flea market takes over the city, occupying a massive 5km of pavements. It’s the second biggest in France after Lille. Part of a great long tradition in France of scouring markets for bargains.

Rederie in Amiens with stall with shelves holding variety of antiques from old lamp to orange ceramic wellington boot, bird sculpture
Rederie in Amiens

Oct 9-13, 2024: La Fête des Vendanges is the extraordinary Montmartre’s annual Grape Harvest Festival attracting over half a million visitors. It has everything, from grape stomping to a Grand Parade, music, dancing, vineyard tours (who knew Montmartre had a vineyard?), a grand picnic and more.

Montmartre Wine Festival 2024 poster with three bottles in blue and words underneath
Montmartre Wine Festival 2024

Montmartre was once the place for artists like Van Gogh who lived at 25 Rue Victor Masse. Van Gogh in Paris.

Van Gogh Boulevard de Clichy showing view down road from place de clichy with tall buildings to right and statue in middle of square
Boulevard de Clichy by Van Gogh Public domain

Oct 9-13, 2024: La Rochelle Jazz Festival, Charente-Maritime, Nouvelle-Aquitaine.  Jazz between the Towers in La Rochelle on the French Atlantic coast is a must for jazz fans. Well-known and new musicians, official concerts and a lively off festival events complete the package.

La Rochelle at night with the towers lit up reflected in the sea
La Rochelle Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Oct 14-20, 2024: The Paris Motor Show takes place every two years at the Exhibition Park at Porte de Versailles. Over a million visitors from around the world come to look at every kind of car you can imagine. 

Oct 26-27, 2024:: The Pepper Festival in Espelette, Pyrénées-Atlantiques just east of St Jean de Luz in south west France (Pays Basque/Nouvelle Aquitaine) is a grand tradition. There’s Basque traditional dancing, and music, parades and pelota as well as a lot of spicy food. In 1650 a Basque navigator, part of Christopher Columbus’ crew brought chili peppers back home. And the rest is history. The first flowers on the plants appear in June and fruit in July. Harvesting takes place in mid-August then the houses are festooned with peppers hung out to dry.

peppers hanging from a ceiling drying in bistro style restaurant in Bayonne
Peppers drying in a Bayonne Restaurant. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Read about more food festivals in France.

Rouen food festival with piled up cheeses
Rouen Food Festival

Oct 25-27, 2024: La Grande Braderie de Saint Tropez is a popular event in Var on the Cote d’Azur. The main shops take their fashion items into the street and sell at very discounted prices. It’s one of the great fun events in shopping for bargains in France.

Grande Braderie sale in St Tropez with small street full of people carrying shopping bags
Grande Braderie de Saint Tropez © Saint Tropez Tourist Office

Oct 23-27, 2024: The prestigious Paris Salon d’Automne art show began in 1903 with the likes of Guimard, Cezanne, Bonnard, Roualt, and Matisse. The idea was to shock the old and introduce the new. It continues today with works by 890 artists including 161 new participants from 43 countries. It takes place in the Petit Palais.

1912 black and white photograph of the Salon d'Automne in Paris
1912 Salon d’Automne Public domain

Oct 26-27, 2024: Chablis Wine Festival in Burgundy. The festival includes tastings of all Chablis appellations, seminars, dinners, auctions, and many other wine-related activities.

Chablis Wine festival showing men in uniform processing down the street
Chablis Wine Festival © Chablis Wine Festival

Oct 26-Nov 3, 2024: Rolex Paris Masters tennis tournament is the final ATP World Masters event. Held in the Accor Arena on a hard surface, 48 players will compete. Currently Novak Djokovic holds the record with 6 titles; only André Agassi, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic himself have been able to win both Roland Garros and the Rolex Paris Masters tournaments in the same year.

Rolex Paris Masters tennis tournament showing one man playing in white shorts and blue top against audience backdrop and large sign with Parisbas written on it
Rolex Paris Masters © Corinne Dubreuil/FFT

Oct 30-Nov 3, 2024: Paris Chocolate Fair at Porte de Versailles is just delicious…and always surprising. 700 or so chocolatiers, pastry chefs and other professionals take part. There are tasting sessions and cookery demonstrations, children’s pasty-making workshops and more. But most startling are the set pieces, the live performances and the fashion show which challenge your ideas about chocolate.

Paris Chocolate Fair performance with four girls dressed in chocolate dancing on stage
Chocolate Fair Performance

Oct 31-Nov 2, 2024: Halloween is not celebrated in France as it is in the UK or USA. But it remains a special time, with France taking All Saints’ Day on November 1 seriously.

Les Templiers at Parc Asterix at Halloween showing models of strange masked men in grey costumes against a ghostly background
Les Templiers at Parc Asterix at Halloween © A-Guisiano/Parc Asterix

Here’s more about how the French celebrate Halloween in France.

If you know of other events you think I should include, please do let me know!

Events in France in 2024

Events in France in January 2024
Events in France in February 2024
Events in France in March 2024
Events in France in April 2024
Events in France in May 2024
Events in France in June 2024
Events in France in July 2024
Events in France in August 2024
Events in France in September 2024

I am currently updating the last two months. Many of the events remain, though the dates change slightly. So in the meantime, click on the link of each event to get an idea of what is covered.


Events in France in November 2023
Events in France in December 2023

To help you find those events, here are a couple of articles on the geography of France

Regions of France
Departments of France

AND…

French Public Holidays