Although the festival season is winding down and the number of events has begun to subside now that the summer is over, there is still plenty going on all over France as we move into the autumn months.
Beaujolais Nouveau – Les Sarmentelles de Beaujeu.
The most prominent event of November is undoubtedly the release of the Beaujolais Nouveau. This takes place on the third Sunday of November on “Beaujolais Nouveau Day” and sees huge sales of this popular red vin de primeur, made from Gamay grapes. It is only fermented for a couple of weeks and only lasts for about a year before it becomes past its best, but it’s this ‘immediacy’ that this wine is renowned for. The ‘Sarmentelle de Beaujeu’ in the Rhone-Alpes region on the 17th November is the official release festival to welcome the imminent arrival of the Beaujolais and promises to be a party not to be missed.
Reims Jazz Festival – Reims
From the 21st of October to the 20th of November, there is a world famous jazz festival in Reims that annually attracts the big names in the jazz world as well as the up and coming fresh talent on the jazz scene. Concerts take place at various venues throughout the historic city.
Salon des Antiquaires – Toulouse
This year sees the 48th ‘Salon des Antiquaires’ take place in Toulouse at the Parc des Expositions . As one of the most prestigious antique fairs in France, this is a golden opportunity for any antique or art collector, but also for the general public – last year more than 75,000 visitors turned up to enjoy the spectacle.
Chocolate Fair – Vannes
For all those with a sweet tooth, the 11th to the 14th of November provides the perfect occasion to indulge at the Vannes Chocolate Fair, which takes place at the Parc des expositions, Chorus de Vannes, in the Morbihan department of Brittany. If you’d like to see how the professionals create their mouth-watering delights then there are numerous contests to test their skills. One in particular to watch out for is the Cabosse d’Or, which is the qualifying heat for the World Chocolate Masters; this year’s theme being A Thousand and One Nights. Once inspired, the general public can try their hand at pastry and cookery workshops. Sextant French Properties has several properties in Vannes such as this splendid 18th century Breton manor house which is on the market for euro483.000.
Festival d’Automne – Paris
This festival is an annual affair that brings together various art forms in the contemporary arts genre. It’s a festival of music, theatre, dance, film and the visual arts. From September to December there are over forty events taking place across the capital city and more than 100000 people are expected to attend them.
Brest European Short Film Festival – 8/14 November
Film buffs out there will no doubt be aware of this small festival that takes place from the 8th of November to the 14th, and showcases the newest narrative and aesthetic trends in contemporary film making. Through the medium of short film young European film makers can highlight different cultures and effectively express their views and concerns about the world we live in. This year the festival is celebrating its 25th anniversary.
International Balloon Rally – Puy-en-Velay 11/14 November
From the 11th of November to the 14th you can attend the Hot Air Balloon Festival in Puy-en-Velay in the Auvergne region. Traditionally the last meet of the aerostatic season, this rally celebrates the end of the season in style, with crews attending from all over the globe. There are around 40 participants and it is undoubtedly a magnificent spectacle to watch; especially when accompanied by delicious local wine and cheeses! Sextant properties has a variety of properties in the Auvergne region ranging from the top end of the market with this wonderful 14th century chateau selling for euro790,000 to a more affordable pretty farmhouse selling for euro124,000.
Rugby Autumn Internationals – Nantes, Lyon
It’s that time of year again and the Autumn Internationals are upon us once more. This month France is playing Fiji in Nantes on the 13th of November and then go on to play Argentina in Lyon on the 20th.
International Gourmet Fair – Dijon
Another event to tickle the taste buds is the world class Dijon International Gourmet Fair, which takes place from the 30th of October to the 11th of November at the Parc des Expositions. Over 200,000 visitors are expected to attend, in addition to the 500 exhibitors and people will have the chance to take part in cookery demonstrations, attend conferences on wine, see the latest culinary products and trends and watch chefs compete against each other.
Fencing World Championship – Paris
How fitting that the birthplace of the Three Musketeers is to be the host of the 2010 Fencing World championships form the 6th to the 13th of November! For the first time in the history of the event, the world’s finest swordsmanship with be on display at the Grand Palais in Paris; quite simply the perfect setting for this exciting occasion. About 800 competitors will be taking part in the Championship and it promises to attract thousands of spectators.