Authentic France Travel Tips #28: Go To A Brocante

Children and brocantes, otherwise known as antique fairs, are not a great mix. Not only does there tend to be a lot of breakable items at brocantes, but as children generally don’t have a house or apartment of their own to furnish, they find them fist-gnawingly boring.

This is why I don’t go to nearly as many brocantes as I would like. Then again, it is probably a good thing I am reined in by my bevy as my bank balance could never support the extent of my brocante addiction.

Of all my favorite things to do in France, going to brocantes comes pretty darn high up on the loooooooong list.

Not only can you find beautiful, one-of-a-kind stuff at bargain prices, but even if you don’t buy anything you walk away with a whole new appreciation for the way life was lived in France for the past several hundred years.


Besides having more permanent brocante stores per capita than any other town in France, Beaune also has several big brocante fairs ever year in the covered market halles just across the street from the entrance to the famous Hotel-Dieu. These fairs are always extremely popular for both locals and antique aficionados from farther afield.

And guess what? There is one coming this Easter weekend on April 11,12, & 13th.

And if you miss that, here are the dates for the other Beaune antique fairs in 2009:

Beaune Antique Fairs 2009: Sous Les Halles

May 30-June 1st

August 15-16th

September 19-20th

October 31-November 1st

***”Authentic France Travel Tips” are posted every Tuesday and give ideas for savvy travellers who want to experience the authentic side of France.