Halloween is kind of a big deal in my family. In Canada Halloween is celebrated across the country, and we spend a ton of effort decorating, carving pumpkins, and getting costumes ready for both kids and adults. Halloween night is spent trick or treating, where kids go door to door to ask for candy. Here in France, it's not a tradition that has really caught on. There is an awareness of the holiday, but trick or treating is pretty much non-existent in most towns.
Still, I'm a pretty stubborn lady sometimes, and it's important to me that my kids get to enjoy Halloween the way I did when I was young, and so I've gone out of my way to keep up the tradition. We ordered some Halloween decorations online, and have hung banners of pumpkins, ghosts, and spiders around the apartment, with a big Happy Halloween banner across the mirror in the dining room. We have found a farm just outside the city with a pumpkin patch (which I'll write about in a future post), and are ordering their costumes online as well.
Since Halloween is best celebrated with others, I have also tracked down some great celebrations for kids in Paris, including those that have trick or treating! Since my older son is gluten free, I know that we will probably have to switch out some of the candy, but that's ok because the Switch Witch has our new address in Paris. If you want to learn more about how the Switch Witch works, check out my post on Celiac Baby from last year. Otherwise, read on to find out where the coolest kid-friendly Halloween celebrations are taking place in Paris this year.
Six Kid Friendly Halloween Celebrations in Paris
1- Disneyland Paris
Disneyland is every child's dream destination, and they certainly know how to do Halloween right. Located just on the outskirts of the city, the park is easily accessible via public transportation. Halloween celebrations at Disney are ongoing throughout the month of October, culminating in a special nighttime party on Halloween night. The Halloween evening event requires special tickets that are different from the regular entrance ticket, and the even runs until 1 am. Hotel packages are available if you are planning to attend on Halloween night. The best part about the Disney Halloween is that kids get to see their favourite characters, enjoy the rides, dress up, and get candy in an atmosphere that is more silly than spooky.
- Website: http://www.disneylandparis.co.uk/events/halloween-at-disneyland-paris/
- Dates: October 1st- November 1st
2- The American Library in Paris Halloween Extravaganza
The American Library holds a Halloween party every year, that keeps getting bigger. This year there are events broken up by age group, from 1-5, 6-10, and 11 plus, including costume contests, stories, arts and crafts, and even a haunted walk for the older children. Children 12 and up can stick around for their Horror Fest, starting at 8pm. Plus, they have partnered with local businesses so that children can trick or treat. Cool, right? 5 Euros per child for members, 15 Euros for non-members. Accompanying adults are free.
- Website: http://www.americanlibraryinparis.org/
- Date: Halloween themed events run all month, but Halloween day Celebration is October 31st.
3- Joe Allen Restaurant
This American restaurant in Paris holds and annual Halloween Costume Party, including a special menu for the occasion. Face-painting, Haunted House, pumpkin carving, and more are all part of the fun. Children are welcome until 9pm, after which time the party is reserved for adults only. Reservation information can be found on the restaurant website.
- Website: http://www.joeallenparis.com/joeallenparis.com/Halloween_2015.html
- Date: October 31st
4- Parc Astérix: Peur sur le Parc
A bit outside the city (40 minutes) but still easily accessible, this amusement park hosts Halloween themed events from October 17-November 1st, with events, entertainment, and displays for visitors of all ages. Most of the more family friendly events take place during the day, with the nighttime entertainment being better suited to older visitors. If you're looking for an alternative to Disney but still with the attractions of an amusement park (or a more affordable option), this may be a good choice.
- Website: http://www.parcasterix.fr/peur-sur-le-parc/infos-pratiques
- Dates: October 17-November 1st (Check the website for specific dates and times
5- Halloween at the Parc Thoiry
Getting to this park requires a vehicle, so it's not necessarily the most practical option if you don't want to rent a car in Paris, but I had to include it because it is such a fun place. The Parc Thoiry is a conservation park that offers a safari-style driving area, a zoo, and a dinosaur exhibit with life-like dinosaurs. There is even a real castle on site. At Halloween, they throw a great party, with themed walks and activities for young children during the evening the week before Halloween, and a Murder party for teens and adults Halloween night. Definitely worth checking out if you're up for the drive. About 30 minutes from Paris.
- Website: https://www.thoiry.net/fr/evenements
- Dates: October 24-26 for children 6+ , October 31st for teens and adults 14+
6- Hard Rock Cafe Paris
On Halloween day, from 9-11 am The Hard Rock Cafe is throwing a party for all the little monsters in Paris, complete with pumpkins, face painting, candy, and more. A great way to start the day off right, and perfect for the littlest monsters who won't be able to stay up late. The party includes an all-you-can-eat breakfast. For those with food restrictions, the website includes a great allergen guide for all menu items, including those with the chance of cross-contamination. Check the site for RSVP information.
- Website: http://www.hardrock.com/cafes/paris/event-calendar.aspx
- Date: October 31st