Autumn Break in Northern France

Planning an autumn break in northern France?

October is easily one of the best autumn month to get away and travel around Europe as the colours of autumn start to appear, and northern France is no exception. Grapes are being harvested around the country and the French love of a good festival continues.

So, what things can you expect to do on an autumn break in northern France?

One of the most enjoyable things to do on an autumn break in northern France is to take a wine tour. Wine is why many people visit France in the first place and the Champagne region is only a short drive from where the Dover Calais ferry will take you. In October you’re sure to find cheap ferries to France so make sure you get a good ferry deal.

Explore the Champagne region and take one of the tours around one of the well known Champagne houses such as Moët & Chandon, walk around the vineyard, learn about how Champagne is produced and of course enjoy a glass or two! Ensure you spend time looking around the historic city of Reims and its magnificent cathedral.

For a completely different event, experience Nuit Blanche, it’s celebrated all over France, and is where attractions, museums, galleries and parks remain open throughout the night. You can discover amazing art before enjoying breakfast in a typically French cafe.

Nuit Blanche first came to Paris in 2002, and is now a much enjoyed annual event, especially by lovers of art and culture in what is such major cultural city. Paris is about a 90 minute drive from the ferry terminal at Calais. Thousands of visitors attend each year with not only Paris galleries and museums staying open, but also swimming pools...with free entry.

Another popular thing to do on an autumn break in northern France is attend an event or festival. You can expect classy light shows and great music events to take place in northern France in the autumn. You’ll find things happening at hundreds of locations around the city. Visit the official Paris tourist office website for details. There you’ll find details of routes, where to find maps and program details.

To help you get around many of the metro lines remain open until about 3.00am, and sometimes all night. Most open at 5.30 in the morning anyway, so it is effectively all night!

They say the best way to enjoy this event is to get yourself to a particular place where you know something’s happening and just wander from there, so you can take in and experience the atmosphere.

The River Seine is a good bet as this is always transformed with music and light shows concentrated on the banks. Another place to try is around the northeast areas of Pigalle and Batignolles, This historically artistic hang out for artists such as Manet and Toulouse-Lautrec, has kept its artistic ambiance. Another artistic centre is Montmartre, which last year hosted more than a dozen events.

Finally, if you want to view the spectacle from a strategic point within the city several places are open for this very purpose as they provide amazing panoramic views of Paris. Last year this included places such as the upper terrace of the Morland Tower by the Sully Morland Metro, the 9th floor of the Institut du Monde Arabe, the 24th floor of the Zamansky Tower at the Universite Pierre and Marie Curie and the 18th floor of the Bibliotheque François Mitterrand.

Also within reach of the France ferries arriving at Calais is Amiens, which holds its annual Rederie, one of the largest flea markets you’ll ever experience. The market literally takes over the whole of Amiens and takes place on Sunday 4th October. It starts early at 5.00am. More than 50 streets are given over to the market with people from as far away as Canada and Australia looking for a bargain. Sellers from all over France will set up their stall here, so it’s much more than just a local event.

The Car ferry to France is definitely the way to travel as you’ll definitely need the space for all those bargains.

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