4 years, 5 months ago
Paris for autumn wine and music, Lisbon for clubs and clothes, Edinburgh for all things Halloween, Alba for Truffles, London for food, food and more food.
It’s autumn, season of wine harvests, food festivals, music festivals, European fashion weeks and Halloween. Definitely not the season to hibernate – unless you’re a small woodland creature in which case, ‘hush’. This October we’ve uncovered some of 2015’s best foodie events, several excuses to visit our favourite cities and more than enough reason to stay up and keep dancing. Step away from the sofa, we’ve got stuff to do.
What do you mean you didn’t know there were vineyards in Montmartre? There’s so much winemaking and grape harvesting going on in this legendary part of Paris it can justify one of the city’s most colourful fêtes and has done for the past 82 years. Naturally there’s plenty of drinking and eating, but Fête des Vendanges de Montmartre is also five days and nights of weird events, competitions, parties, live music, dancing, exhibitions, markets and endless entertainment. It’s traditionally a big family occasion so there are lots of kids’ activities and it’s all very lively and friendly. If you only manage for one day, make it Sunday, the Grand Bal de Clôture is as atmospheric and romantic as Montmartre itself.
Lisbon’s full of design surprises like ‘not just a market’ Mercado da Ribeira, waterfront clubbing at Cais do Sodré, late nights eating, drinking and playing in Bairro Alto. So when Moda Lisboa sets out its stall every October, the fashion industry takes note, travels and relaxes into how Portugal does an International Fashion Event: shows in the afternoon and evening, travelling around in gorgeous trams and making full use of the city’s famously lovely rooftop bars and hang-outs. The collections are intriguing and innovative and there’s plenty of design centred activity off the runway too. And it’s a great time to see why Lisbon doesn’t need to explain how cool it is.
Oh so sad, the last parties of summer are over and no more dancing till next year. Don’t think so. ADE (Amsterdam Dance Event) is taking over Amsterdam from 14th to 18th October. Running since 1996, ADE is now the world’s biggest club festival and this year it’s expected to bring upwards of 350,000 to the Dutch capital. Whether you’re scouting, promoting or just waiting to be entertained there are 450 plus conferences planned and a citywide playground of movies, fashion, pop-up performance, exhibitions, DJs, dance, dance and more dance. The party is definitely not over in Amsterdam this October if ADE has anything to do with it.
If the Catacombs on All Hallows Eve aren’t enough reason to be in Paris this October, Pitchfork is back. The legendary indie festival that’s now a Chicago summer staple is playing Grande Halle de la Villette for its fourth year with a line up including Thom Yorke, Hudson Mohawke, Laurent Garnier, Father John Misty, Curtis Harding. La Trabendo is hosting live After Parties on 29th and 30th from 11pm to 6am. And Grande Halle de la Villette is simply one of the most interesting venues in Paris at the moment.
There are truffle fairs all over Piedmont come autumn. But if you want to taste, smell and see the world’s most expensive fungus at its finest, visit the International White Truffle Fair in Alba. This is where big spending world gourmets go to bid for prized truffles and where the rest of us can actually afford to eat them and see what all the fuss is about. But it’s also a great event-filled festival. The food and wine are as fantastic as you’d expect in the heart of Piedmont. Everyone’s enthusiastic, friendly and surprisingly unpretentious, considering. And Alba’s a gorgeous, Medieval Italian city even if you aren’t consumed by truffle-madness – yet.
With over 200 stalls and dozens of international chefs, cooks, specialists and celebrities, plus talks and demos, cookery classes, kids’ events and almost endless opportunities to eat and drink, London Vegfest is now the biggest vegetarian and vegan festival in Europe. So big in fact, it’s moved venue and this year you’ll find it at Olympia Central on the 10th and 11th October. The Metropolitan Crime Museum has always been closed to the public, until now. From October 9th 2015, the Museum of London is exhibiting artefacts from one of the world’s most chilling collections for the first time ever. The Crime Museum Uncovered is a thrilling (and disturbing) journey into the minds of the UK’s most notorious criminals illustrated by the tools of their trade and fascinating insights into modern forensics and law enforcement. And if you want to antidote the gruesome, visit Regent’s Park from 14th to 17th October for London’s annual Frieze Art Fair.
Edinburgh Old Town at Halloween is a haunting experience all by itself. But if you’re made of stern stuff and want to test your nerves until they scream, Edinburgh Dungeons has an entire day of horror planned for October 31st. If you’re thinking ‘just for kids’, we’ve been there, we’ve thought that and we won’t ever be so foolish again. David Bailey’s Stardust is an incredible exhibition of 300 images at Edinburgh’s wonderful National Gallery until 18th October – worth the ticket price to see Mick Jagger looking pretty and a handsome young Jack Nicholson. And there are more dinosaurs at Edinburgh Zoo until November 1st. Dinosaurs Return features incredible animatronic dinosaurs, thrilling guided tours, exhibitions and daily events – if you need another reason to visit Edinburgh’s amazing zoo this autumn.
Have a happy hibernation-free October and for even more inspiration have a look HERE.