Halloween in Montpellier

Halloween is not nearly as widely celebrated in France as it would be in the US or even the UK, but you will find the odd event if you look hard enough. The French American Center have a party for children and later adults on the 31st itself. And with November 1st being the French national holiday La Toussaint (All Saints’ Day) you won’t have to worry about getting up for work the next day. This day is celebrated, as in many other European countries, by honouring the dead, but the French also use it to visit living friends and relatives.

If you are lucky enough to be invited to a déguisement (fancy dress / costume party) you must dress to impress. Our French friends take this particular genre very seriously and don’t scrimp on even home made costumes. The lack of charity shops can be a problem, but bits and pieces of Halloween attire are creeping into French supermarkets and there’s always a costume shop at hand if you have the urge to really go to town. Montpellier’s is situated near the junction of Gambetta and Clémenceau and you can even order online. Do expect them to be busy all year round though.

If you can’t wait until the day itself many of the bars and clubs will have special themed nights the weekend before, but the must see (if not actually take part) event for us is the annual Zombie march. We were lucky enough to be part of the first one, which took place on Halloween itself as it fell on a Sunday that year.

We began in Beaux Arts and followed a route up the Corum steps and along the Esplanade gathering spectators as we went. My favourite bit was the look of puzzlement displayed by an elderly lady sitting on the tram that we attacked on the Comedie, I will never forget that moment. Some of the costumes were epic and wearing only my pyjamas with nothing but face make-up to hide behind I did feel a little under dressed. It didn’t stop me going to Diagonal to see the fantastic horror movie Rubber later that night though, or having a meal at the Indian Kebab before hand.

This year’s event culminates in a party at the Australian bar.  You really must go along, it’s seriously good fun. They’ll even help you with your make up for a small fee!

2 Responses

  1. Shane Starling October 29, 2012 at 10:23 am #

    I’m having a Halloween party on wednesday night at my flt near place st roch. get in touch if you want to come along! theme is Halloween disney…

    shanerexfordstarling@gmail.com

    shane

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