October in Provence
The grapes have been picked and now the nets have been placed at the bottom of the olive trees ready for this years harvest.
The bright green traditional Alpilles olives vertes cassées have appeared in the markets and every store. Even olives are seasonal in Provence. Also in season, plums of all kinds, pears, chestnuts, still delicious tomatoes, figs, and almonds just off the tree.
In October, we celebrate the arrival of squash and the beginning of the soup season. The weekly markets are slowing down, but there’s still plenty to see and do in Provence. If it’s a sunny day, temperatures can easily get up to the high 20’s so if you’re visiting, bring attire for all eventualities.
Here is my list of the October Events in Provence. Please feel free to add any events in the comments section from your area of France, or even abroad!
29 September to 28 October
Sous les Feuilles d’Automne Festival des Arts – Eygalières
Rencontre Le Savoir Faire des Alpilles – Les Alpilles region
Meet the artists and producers who’s wares you’ll find in this beautiful shop in Saint Remy de Provence. Everything from goat’s cheese producers to olive oil to hand blown glass workshops will be open to the public. See the brochure here.
Buenos Arles Tango – Arles
Argentinian Tango competition takes over Arles. See the site for tickets.
La Foire de la Sainte Thérèse – Eygalières
This is similar to the August event in Maussane-les-Alpilles. Locals dress in the attire of the year 1900. The traditional trades are celebrated and you’ll most likely catch sight of some Arlésiennes. Costume parades at 11h and 15h. A lovely day out.
Route des Artists – Saint Remy de Provence
On Sunday, October 7th you’ll find the last Sunday of the year where 100 local artists fill the streets of Saint Remy de Provence. Wander, buy or admire something that inspires you, and have a delicious meal out.
Fête de l’Automne – Lauris
Parcours de l’Art – Avignon
Contemporary artists all throughout Avignon open their ateliers/workshops and galleries to the public. Walk around Avignon and admire the local imagination! A great day out. Printed maps are available at the tourist office.
Fête de la Courge – Rians
This is the best gourd festival I’ve been to here in Provence. There’s provencal beef stew with squash cooking in enormous pots, pottery demonstrations, candy with pumpkin flavours and everything you can imagine to do with gourds!
Fête des Champignons – Saint Trinit
A Market where you’ll be able to see 100 different varieties of mushrooms, a day in honour of that delicious fungus with lots of information on how to consume them.
12h30 : repas champêtre (rustic meal) for 18€ per person
Call to reserve: 04 90 75 01 85
Carrément à l’Ouest – Port Saint Louis
A festival dedicated to art in the street where you’ll find spectacles involving poetry, emotion, and humour. Free festival starting at 11 am. I’m assuming the name comes from the much-used French expression of “être à l’ouest” which means to be daydreaming.
14, 21, 28
La Fête des Châtaignes – Collobrières
Chestnut festival celebrating the harvest in an area dominated by these beautiful trees.
Journée du Commerce et de l’Artisanat de Provence – Tarascon
Artisan and gourmet market.
Floralies d’automne – Sénas
30 vendors gather for a day-long flower market in Sénas where you’ll find seasonal autumn flowers at great prices.
Fiesta des Suds – Marseille
Large Music and Cultural Festival in Marseille with many performing artists. Click the link for tickets.
Pelerinage des Saintes Maries – Saintes Maries de la Mer
This is the Autumn version of the enormous pilgrimage made to this seaside town. Gypsies from all around the world descend upon this small town. Locals take advantage of the festival to drink a rather lot of rosé and eat together in the public square. Fantastic ambiance. Book a hotel room- you’ll be drinking a lot! 11h Procession to the sea.
Fête de la Châtaigne – Revest du Bion
Another chestnut festival. Eat the festival meal and rub elbows with locals.
Repas à la châtaigne (chestnut inspired meal) (réservations au 06.40.31.74.69)
20 euros per person
Menu de la Fête
Dariole de légumes au potiron et châtaigne.
Suprême de poulet aux châtaignes et aux champignons
Accompagnement : riz pilaf persillé.
Fromage de chèvre de revest du bion et
Pain de campagne Véritables pains bûcherons cuits au feu de bois.
Dessert maison Moelleux châtaigne noisettes et crème anglaise.
6 -Nov 28
Festival des Soupes – Vaison la Romaine (et environs/and around)
It doesn’t get more country than this. In various villages in the Vaucluse, there are soup competitions held in the evenings. Taste the local’s 200 versions of all kinds of flavours to celebrate the harvest. If you dare, enter yourself- you might even win…
What soup recipe would you cook if you had to compete??!
Ongoing Events in October
Every Tuesday at Barbentane you’ll find an assembly of Food trucks. The hipsters have finally found Provence!! Starts at 18h.
Go to Vide Grenier to find the ones nearest you. See my article about Vide Greniers to learn more about flea markets in Provence.