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Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

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Cherry Hill, New...
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Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Greetings All!

I am have a trip planned for the middle of October to Paris. I am surprising my wife with it so I have been doing all of the planning solo and just want to make sure I do my due diligence of not missing overlooking anything!

My first question is, I know of all the touristy sites and places but I was trying to see what hidden gems there might be that we can visit. On our vacations, we usually enjoy trying to interact with the locals and spend our time at a place as though we live there. Yes we will go to the touristy places to check them off our list but for the most part we assimilate into the culture and lifestyle of where we are. Are there any places that mostly locals only know about that are worth while to check out to get a true Parisian experience?

Secondly, we are traveling in mid October. I have done my research on the weather and have seen it is mostly cool and damp. Those are very generic terms I understand which is why I was hoping someone could quantify them for me. We will be staying 10 days and I was wondering how often will it be raining during our stay? I.e. 50%, 75%...? Should I be packing a rain coat to wear everyday or would general attire plus an umbrella work just fine?

Finally, we are staying near Luxembourg Gardens. I was just wondering how the gardens are during mid October? Are the trees mostly dead or are they peaking in changing color? I hope the latter as it would be shame that we are at the gardens when everything is dead!

Thank you all in advance and I cannot wait to join you in sharing my experiences in Paris!!!

Paris, France
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1. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

October is much like April, only with (slightly) fewer tourists. It is cooler than summer but not cold, and it is not especially damp. The trees are usually still leafy but may be starting to change color. It's a very nice time of year.

warrensburg,MO
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2. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Luckily for you and everyone else the trees will not be "dead" as they often live for hundreds of years. They will have their leaves turning from green to orange and/or red with the leaves finally fluttering, spiralling and falling to the ground by the first week of November.

Cherry Hill, New...
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3. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Haha, I am lucky that the trees do not die! Guess I should revisit my choice of words :)

Boston...
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4. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Michael, there are lots and lots of people who ask the same question about hidden gems in Paris. The simple answer is, there aren't many.

Most gems are discovered by people themselves. So, without meaning to be snarky, go down an interesting-looking side street, get out of the single digit arrondissements and find your own gems.

Paris, France
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5. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

While you are vacationing in Paris, the locals will be doing the things that you do at home - such as taking the kids to school, going to the doctor or dentist, running errands, paying bills etc...Is this what you want to do on vacation too?

Val-de-Marne, France
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6. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

The weather is completely unpredictable so the only thing you can do is check the data for the last 10 years or so to get an idea of the possible ranges. The temperatures are in celsius degrees so have a conversion table nearby to make sense of the figures if they don't mean anything to you. www.meteociel.fr/climatologie/villes.php…

The rainfall column is not very significant because when a day shows rain it doesn't say if it was a 10-minute episode in the middle of the night or a several hours of daytime drizzle and rain. In October, heavy showers are not as common as in the spring, it tends to be lighter but more persistant rain. The most significant column is the last one showing the number of hours of sunshine.

The foliage will start turning golden. How early or how late will depend on the late summer / early fall weather and the trees. I don't have any photos of central Paris in October to show you right now but here are the trees in my town just 5 miles outside Paris late October 2012 to give you an idea: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/…

Edited: 26 July 2014, 22:50
Paris, France
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7. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Of course, once a "hidden gem" is mentioned anywhere on the internet, it becomes front-page news, and you'll find a lot of company in those little nooks and crannies that only the locals know about - or knew about...

People always ask this kind of question, but are often disappointed to find out that these places are not always that special, and not many - if any - locals will be there. As someone mentioned, we are usually home doing our laundry, standing in line at some government office, or something terribly exciting like that. When tourists - even nice ones - start descending on a place, it often changes for the worse to accommodate them. I've lost more nice little restaurants lately, due to this...

Here's an interesting website, though, if you want to go wandering where many tourists don't bother to go:

www.unjourdeplusaparis.com

You could also check out kerouac2's reports on TA or on this website:

www.anyportinastorm.proboards.com

Napa Valley, CA
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8. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Check the weather reports constantly before going. Four years ago we arrived in Paris on Oct 17, for 10 days and it was freezing Well, not technically freezing, but very cold and damp (This was Oct. 2010 if any of you locals remember it). Cold the whole time we were there but not really raining. I was not prepared for the cold temps. We went to the south of France for a week and came back to Paris for one night, Nov 4, before our flight home. That night was warm and balmy! So you never can tell. I hope you have a warm, lovely October, with leaves turning shades of gold and red...but just be prepared with layers, rain jackets, and gloves!

Edited: 27 July 2014, 08:00
California
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9. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Not a local for sure, but as said before Paris weather is quite changeable. Once my family and I visited in October the first day it was sunny and quite warm, but the following day it turned cold and drizzly. On a different October visit the weather was overcast with some sun and drizzle in between but humid.

Richmond, Virginia
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10. Re: Paris in the fall - Advice from locals

Re. weather, it's also worth remembering that whatever the temperatures in Paris, the contrast from where you are coming makes a difference too. It was very warm here in Virginia early last October (lower 90s Fahrenheit), and it felt bizarre to be packing layers and a wool blazer while dressed in shorts and a tank top. Our week in Paris was intermittently rainy, and the temperatures were in the mid-50s, which felt frigid in comparison to home. That blazer and layers felt wonderful. :)