The Spooky Guide to Paris

Halloween is here and I, for one, am very happy about that! Not only do I love the colors of the autumn season and the brisk air that comes with it, but I also happen to love a good fright and an epic Halloween costume. Halloween isn’t a well celebrated holiday in France, although it gets more and more popular every year. That doesn’t stop me from getting in the spooky spirit though with friends who love to dress up and a few Paris Halloween traditions of my own.

Paris Rendezvous

Each October I visit my favorite places I’ve discovered in Paris over the years that put me in the Halloween mood. It’s my own personal Spooky Guide to Paris that I thought I would share with you. If you don’t feel up for a fright then don’t worry, most of these places are beautiful and historic stops in the city worth visiting regardless. You’ll leave with your wits about you, but if you have a bit of an imagination and a taste for the terrifying around Halloween like myself, you’ll enjoy the eerie feeling lingering around these potentially haunted places this time of year. Let’s take a little tour together here...

The Catacombs

Sometimes called The City of the Dead, the Catacombs are winding underground roads lurking below Paris filled with the bones of over six million people that have gone before us. Finding enough space for graves within and around Paris became a serious problem in the late 1700’s. Eventually bones excavated from the cemeteries were relocated underground. One could never know this dark damp underworld lies beneath Paris unless they have passed through the "Barrière d’Enfer” (Gate of Hell) on Rue de la Tombe-Issoire and into the Catacombs. While spooky, it’s also an incredible historical monument classified as a museum and visited by hundreds of thousands every year.

The Vampire Museum

Behind a little red door on the outskirts of Paris is an entire little museum dedicated to the history of vampires. Visits are by appointment only, but if you’re a fan of vampires and their mythology, you will devour this eerie collection of curiosities and literature on the blood sucking sub human species.

The History of Medicine Museum

Musée d’histoire de la médecine is a wonderful little museum that is relatively unknown. It’s a journey through strange and sometimes terrifying medical practices of centuries past. Filling the glass cases are creepy diagrams and frightening antique medical apparatuses that make brave visitors cringe. One can almost here the echoes of the mad doctors and strange science experiments that might have once filled the halls here.

Cemeteries of Paris

Call me strange but when I travel I love to visit old cemeteries. The three main cemeteries in Paris are all beautiful, paved in cobblestone and this time of year, lined with trees changing color to orange, red and yellow. Try the Montmartre Cemetery and you might have a run in with the ghosts of Alexandre Dumas and Edgar Dugas who are buried here, or with Oscar Wilde, for example, on the other side of town at the Père Lachaise Cemetery. Lastly, if you’ve visited the Catacombs, the Montparnasse Cemetery is just next door.

Le Manoir de Paris

If you’re really in for a fright and feeling brave, visit Le Manoir de Paris for an animated haunted house experience. Created in an old abandoned ceramics workshop in the 10th district of Paris, you never know what lurks around the corner here. It’s a fun way to have a fright night with friends around Halloween.

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