As the leaves begin to change and pumpkin spice takes over every coffee shop, cities around the world are preparing to celebrate the change of the season. Whether you are planning to travel or stay close to home, here are some festivals that may inspire you to create your own fun this fall!
Since 1972, the beginning of September marks a three-month celebration of contemporary arts in the city of lights. An array of diverse exhibitions, such as rare paintings and theater performances, attract art lovers from every corner of the world. Deemed as one of the largest events of its type in the world, an estimated 100,000 people attend annually.
Location: Paris, France
Dates: September 1 – December 31
Chicagoween: Forget dressing up for one night – the whole month of October is Halloween in Chicago! Buildings, parks, and streets are decorated, with kid-friendly activities staged throughout the city. Daley Plaza, festively re-named “Franken Plaza” is the center for entertainment with live theater shows and performances by the high-flying act Midnight Circus.
Location: Chicago, IL
Dates: October 1 – 31
National Apple Harvest Festival: Pennsylvania’s top apple growing region welcomes visitors for two weekends in October with live music, orchard tours, and every apple themed treat you could ever think of! For 49 years, the town of Biglerville celebrates fall with this festival of fun, family friendly activities such as apple bobbing, a pie eating contest and a petting zoo.
Location: Biglerville, PA
Dates: October 5 – 6 & 12 – 13
Wellfleet Oyster Festival: For a weekend in October, the Wellfleet Oyster Festival takes over Cape Cod, complete with oyster reef tours and a shucking competition. Along with crafts and clowns for the younger crowd, there are also educational programs such as a shell fishermen documentary and cooking demos. With 16 food vendors, 12 raw bars, and an array of activities for every age group, there is sure to be something for everyone!
Location: Wellfleet, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
Dates: October 18 – 20
Day of the Dead: Also known as “Dia de los Muertos”, this holiday is observed as a day for family and friends to remember loved ones who have passed. Particularly celebrated in Mexico, people go to cemeteries to decorate tombstones and have picnics. Usually assumed by foreigners as a mournful and somber time, this day actually is a very colorful and festive event in Mexico.
Location: Mexico and other Latin countries
Dates: November 1 – 2
Diwali Festival of Lights: Hindus everywhere celebrate this occasion with the belief that Lakshimi, the goddess of wealth, will enter their home if there is a clay lamp burning outside. Locals will clean their homes, as well as wear colorful new clothes, as it is a sign of prominence. In the evening, the sky is lit up with fireworks to create loud noises and lights that will drive away any evil spirits that are lurking. Sweets and snacks are shared with neighbors and feasting non-stop is encouraged for the whole five days. To learn more about this holiday, visit here.
Dates: November 3 – 7