Your guide to Paris in fall: 7 essential experiences

Paris is filled with a plethora of amazing fall activities. Here are 8 of the best things to do and see.

As the high temperatures drop and summer crowds disperse, Paris transforms for the fall season, with all the romance, history, and culture it’s famous for even more appealing against a backdrop of stunning autumnal hues. Discover it all with the help of this guide to Paris in the fall.

Explore the vibrant colors of Paris’ thriving art scene at Art Basel and indulge in delicious fair food and classic rides at the annual Fête à Neu-Neu. Embrace the spookier side of Paris and explore the underground labyrinth of the Paris catacombs. Visit the Louvre without the endless lines of the peak summer season, or head out to the countryside for the grape harvest and the fall scenery. In this roundup of seven great things to do in Paris in fall, you'll find all that and more.

photo by: Bernelee Kritzinger

1. Explore the quieter streets of Paris on a guided walking tour

Embrace the cooler weather and explore the streets of Paris as the summer crowds give way to the fall’s beautiful auburn hues.

Why do it in the fall?

As fall begins, the crowds that flood Paris throughout summer dissipate, and the temperatures start to cool down, making it the perfect time to join a guided walking tour. Enjoy the more relaxing atmosphere of Paris in the fall as you navigate the streets and popular spots. Explore popular neighborhoods like La Marais and the Latin Quarter without the crowds, and don’t miss out on Montmartre as the changing ivy transforms the neighborhood.

Discover guided walking tours in Paris

photo by: Bernelee Kritzinger

2. Escape gloomy weather at a museum

Paris’ fall weather is often dry, sunny, and pleasant, but it can easily turn wet and great. If that happens, spend the day inside exploring some of the city’s amazing museums.

Why do it in the fall?

Gloomy fall weather may make you want to stay indoors, but no need to stay trapped inside your hotel room; instead, spend your day leisurely exploring some of Paris’ world-renowned museums. With fewer crowds, you can wander through popular museums like the Louvre or Musée d’Orsay and enjoy a more intimate experience with their masterpieces.

Discover Paris’ museums

3. Celebrate Paris’ thriving cultural scene at Art Basel

Immerse yourself in contemporary art as you explore unique exhibitions and collections that showcase the work of established and up-and-coming French artists.

Why do it in the fall?

In late October, join art enthusiasts from around the world at Art Basel to celebrate Paris’ vibrant art scene. With Paris’ cultural institutions pairing up with Art Basel, explore the art fairs’ dynamic installations and exhibitions that showcase various contemporary art from paintings to sculptures, photography to digital art, and mixed media and live performance. This unique celebration of Paris’ cultural scene and France’s thriving art scene is a must-do in the fall.

4. Take in the fall colors and iconic landmarks on a river cruise

Embark on a Seine River cruise, taking in the views of Paris’ iconic landmarks amplified by the beauty of the fall colors.

Why do it in the fall?

Journey through the heart of Paris on a Seine River cruise and see the city draped in cozy autumn hues. Glide past iconic city landmarks, from the Eiffel Tower to Notre-Dame, and see the people of Paris run and ramble along the riverside as they stand against the mesmerizing backdrop of the golden leaves.

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5. Get a haunting glimpse of Paris’ past in the catacombs

Discover the haunting allure of Paris’ catacombs as you explore under the city streets.

Why do it in the fall?

Fall is the perfect time to visit one of Paris’ spookiest spots, the catacombs. Get into the Halloween spirit as you explore the eerie network of tunnels under Paris, where the remains of 6 million people lie. As you wander through the extensive subterranean labyrinth, lined with skulls and bones, learn about the people who called Paris home throughout the centuries and embrace the haunting intrigue of the city’s complex history.

Discover the catacombs

6. Stay cozy in the kitchen with a cooking class

Join a local cooking class and discover how to recreate the best of French cuisine when you return from your trip.

Why do it in the fall?

Another activity perfect for a rainy day in Paris, you’ll work alongside skilled chefs as you unravel the secrets of classic French cuisine, from delicate pastries to hearty seasonal dishes. Cooking classes are a great way to learn a new skill and savor some delicious Parisian flavors.

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photo by: Bernelee Kritzinger

7. Explore the vineyards outside Paris during the fall harvest

Explore French wines’ complex flavors and unique traditions on a guided wine tour during the fall harvest season.

Why do it in the fall?

Whether you want to stay indoors or venture out into the vineyards, fall is the perfect time to stimulate your senses on a guided wine tour. Head out of the city on a day trip to explore wineries and enjoy stunning autumnal views of the French countryside. Learn about French grapes and rich wine culture while sipping a range of delicious wines.

Discover French wine experiences

FAQs

What is the weather like in Paris during the fall?

The temperatures in Paris gradually drop from about 68F (20C) in September to around 50F (10C) by November. In the morning and evening, expect it to be cooler and the air to be crisp. Make sure to have an umbrella, as Paris can get pretty rainy during the fall, most notably during October.

What are the best fall events or festivals in Paris?

If you want to immerse yourself in Paris’ cultural scene, visit during Nuit Blanche or Art Basel in October.

What are the top places to see fall foliage in Paris?

If you visit any of Paris’ parks, you are bound to see amazing fall foliage. Bois de Boulogne is an expansive park with spectacular fall foliage. Montmartre is also a must-see, with the ivy on the buildings turning red and the sweeping views over the city with all of the autumnal hues on full display.

Is fall a good time for visiting Paris' museums and cultural sites?

Fall is the perfect time to visit Paris’ many museums and cultural sites as the crowds tend to be much smaller, and it's a great way to explore Paris when the weather is gloomy and rainy.

Is fall a good time to visit vineyards and wineries?

Fall is an excellent time to visit regional wineries and vineyards as they prepare and carry out their harvests. Not only can you enjoy amazing views of the fall foliage, but you can also learn about the harvest during your visit and try new vintages released during the fall.