Not yet faced with the onslaught of Christmas, for some of us, the summer holidays seem far behind. Looking for a quick and beneficial autumn break? Then look no further than a short hop across the channel. The changing season means fewer crowds and plenty of things to see and do in France in October. A break now is as good as a week in springtime and will leave you ready for the party season ahead – and perhaps the ability to neatly avoid the mayhem of Hallowe’en and Guy Fawkes night at home! What should you pack to wear? Sunny sweater-only days and crisp chilly evenings are what to expect – weather-wise.
Forage for fungi
So, what’s to do on a quick break in France in October? Changing leaves and pretty woodlands are a symbol of autumn, and especially October, before the winter sets in. In France, gastronomy is always top of the list on the tourist trail. October sees some serious mushroom hunting, and there are often specially organised groups. Top tip: Don’t pick or eat anything you’re not completely sure of, and for the best advice, use a local guide. If you don’t fancy the fresh air and grubby fingers of foraging, take a trip to the local market instead, where there’ll be plenty of choice of just-picked varieties.
Take to the waters
A day trip on a barge or a boat trip up the Seine is a romantic and wonderful way to spend some time in October in France. Watch Paris glide past from a different perspective, as you enjoy the fewer crowds compared to high season and the summer months. Perhaps a river cruise with a meal in the evening, or music.
Taste the wine
Naturally, one of the best and foremost reasons to visit France is to indulge in the wines. World famous labels and small estate bottled wines make France the world leader in vinification. Taste your favourite wine at source, with a special trip to a winery, or just enjoy shopping for some to take home. Fill the rack for Christmas.
Where to stay
One of the nicest places to stay is Marriott’s Village d’Ile de France timeshare apartments. Rent directly from the owner and negotiate a good price for your autumn break in France. You’ll be glad you did.