Halloween is definitely not a French holiday!
Despite some great commercial efforts, there was a sort of celebration of Halloween in France but it doesn’t last more than 3 or 4 years. You can see some decors in stores, and there is always some parties to attend but nothing more. But it was so unnatural and weird here, that we actually don’t miss it.
However, today is a public holiday in France as we celebrate la Toussaint, All Saints Day.
All Saints Day is a catholic holiday celebrated on November 1 in honor of all the saints known and unknown. We call it Toussaint in French which is a contraction of “tous les saints”, all the saints.
There is no particular way to celebrate except for those who go to church to attend All Saints mass.
But, All Saints Day is followed by All Souls Day on November 2 which is not a public holiday. That’s why the tradition is to go to the cemeteries to honor the dead family members. People buy chrysanthemum to decorate the graves of their dear ones and go to the cemeteries as a family.
Nothing as fun as Halloween! I know.
It’s typically a family day.
In Paris, food stores usually opened on Mondays will be opened in the morning, others will be closed.
If you want to go shopping, head to Beaugrenelle. From now on, the mall is opened on Sundays including today.
Museums are opened for the most part except the followings: National Museum of Modern Art in Paris, Archeological Crypt of the Parvis Notre Dame, Balzac Museum, Jean Moulin Museum, Bourdelle Museum, Musée de la Poste, Carnavalet Museum, Musée de la Poupée, Catacombes, Musée de la Vie Romantique, Cernuschi Museum, Victor Hugo Museum, Clémenceau Museum, Zadkine Museum, Musée du Compagnonage.
If you want to enjoy a free entrance as the first Sunday of the month, check this list. Except the Louvre, they are all free today.
Most of restaurants usually opened on Sunday will be open but I recommend to check before going.
If you are looking for a cemetery to visit, head to Père Lachaise, the largest and first garden cemetery in Paris. Molière, Balzac, Oscar Wilde, Edith Piaf, Jim Morrison, just to name a very few famous people, are buried there.
A mass in English will be held at Saint Joseph’s Church – 50 avenue Hoche – 75008 Paris on November 1 at 9:30am, 11am, 12:30am and 6:30pm.
Good All Saints Day to all of you who celebrate! To the others, have a good day! And good weekend to everybody! Bonne fête de la Toussaint !