10 reasons to hop over in October!

It's that time of year again: summer already seems far way, the air is turning chilly, the days are getting shorter and you're in need of a family break before Christmas comes along. If you're searching for an idea during the October half term hols, then look no further: Normandy is the perfect destination for a short holiday with the kids, come rain or shine!

Top 5 things to do if the sun is shining

Fête de la Pomme, du Cidre et du Fromage, Conche-en-Ouche

Two hours from Ouistreham and 90 minutes from Le Havre, the Apple, Cider and Cheese Festival in Conches-en-Ouche has become quite the event in Normandy. This year’s anticipated 35,000 visitors can expect a farmers market, tastings, cooking demos, folk music, regional cider, honey and gingerbread, traditional Norman games and an abundance of pop-up restaurants serving Norman specialties.

Sunday 28 October

Foire Saint-Romain, Rouen

Held every year in October on the banks of the River Seine, Rouen's Foire Saint-Romain is nothing less than France's second-biggest funfair. Boasting 230 rides and games for big and small, it's a great family outing on a crisp Autumn day. Smells of candyfloss and toffee apples will fill the air, screams of excitement will be heard across town and firework displays will light up the night at weekends.

From 19 October to 18 November

Parc de Chantore, Bacilly

If you're planning on visiting the Mont-Saint-Michel during your stay, make the most of your day out by touring the fairytalesque Parc de Chantore, only 3 miles away from the Bay. Visitors can now come and enjoy the many species of flowers and trees in the chateau gardens, walf around the dreamy lake and marvel at stunning views of the Mont-Saint-Michel.

The garden is open year-round but you must book your visit by phone: +336 74 30 66 64

(c) Chateau de Chantore

Fête de la Coquille Saint-Jacques, Villers-sur-Mer

Halfway between Deauville and Cabourg on the Flowered Coast, the quaint seaside town of Villers-sur-Mer will come alive with food, colour, music and entertainment with one of the biggest events on the town's calendar: the Scallop Festival. Expect delicious fresh seafood galore plus activities and tastings for all the family.

27 and 28 October

Come and enjoy fresh seafood on the Flowered Coast

Le Bois des Aigles, Bâlines

Just a mile away from Verneuil-sur-Avre, in the South of Normandy, this wildlife park is dedicated to eagles, owls and many other birds of prey. Families can watch the birds soar over the trees or enjoy an indoor show inside the only auditorium of its kind in France.

Open 7 days a week from 2pm to 6pm
(c) Le Bois des Aigles

Top 5 things to do if the skies aren't so blue

Calvados Experience, Pont-L'Evêque

Since its opening last March, Normandy's newest major tourist attraction has been getting very enthusiastic reviews, and for good reason. This site explores the history of Calvados, the traditional Norman drink, through multi-sensory exhibits, making for a fun and educational visit for young and old alike. Kids will love the digital floors, immersive rooms and special effects, while parents can enjoy a tasting session with a Calvaos Connoisseur and learn all about the three stages of tasting. 

Open 7 days a week from 9:30am to 7pm

Horse Show at the Haras du Pin

The Haras du Pin is France's oldest and most aristocratic national stud. Founded by Louis XIV, its bears the nickname of ‘the equestrian Versailles’ well. In its idyllic setting in southern Normandy, the stud stages impressive equine events. During the October holidays, a new show will be taking place in the beautiful Manège d'Aure, at the heart of the Stud, which is sure to get your eyes sparkling.

Shows on every day at 3pm from 24 to 28 October and from 31 October to 4 November.

Biotropica, Val-de-Reuil

Get lost in a tropical rainforest and enjoy up-close animal encounters! Set in a 6000 square-metre greenhouse at the heart of the Seine Valley, Biotropica is home to a variety of rare plants and animals and is dedicated to the discovery and preservation of the environment. A baby red panda was born here just a few weeks ago - come see him for yourself!

Open 7 days a week from 9:30am to 7pm

(c) Parc Biotropica

Rouen Dungeon

Escape Games are now making their way into mainstream entertainment and people are constantly looking for new type of experiences. Rouen Dungeon truly is an Escape Game with a difference, as it has been set up in the tower where Joan of Arc herself was kept prisoner. 3 to 8 gamers are locked up in this unusual and creepy site with 60 minutes to escape! An exciting family experience for Halloween.

Open from Tuesday to Sunday until 11 November
Escape the tower where Joan of Arc was kept prisoner!

Musée Les Pêcheries, Fécamp

This new landmark fisheries museum explores the long history of fishing in the port of Fécamp and in Normandy, along with exhibits from local traditions and history. It also boasts a stunning glass rooftop, enabling visitors to enjoy panoramic views of the town and the sea. Until 11 November, you can also catch the beautiful stained glass window exhibition.

Open 7 days a week from 11am to 7pm
© Musée des pêcheries à Fécamp