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Upcoming Holidays and Festivals in France

Market day, Sarlat-la-Canéda
Markets bring a festive feel to town squares across France, even on quotidian workdays.
  • Before planning a trip around a festival, verify the festival dates on the festival's website or with a local tourist information office. For more information about these and other events, visit the official tourism sites for France and Paris.
  • This list includes major festivals in major cities, plus national holidays observed throughout France. Many sights and banks close down on national holidays — keep it in mind when planning your itinerary. Note that this isn't a complete list; holidays can strike without warning.
  • See upcoming holidays and festivals across Europe


January 1:  New Year's Day (closures)

February 10–26:  Nice Carnival (Mardi Gras, parades and fireworks)

February 11–26:  Lemon Festival, Menton

February 18–19:  Le Corso Fleuri, Bormes-les-Mimosas (traditional flower parade in coastal Provence)

March 6–11:  La Route du Rock Winter, St-Malo and Rennes (rock and post-punk acts)

April–November:  International Garden Festival, Chaumont-sur-Loire

April 7:  Good Friday (Vendredi Saint, closures)

April 9 & 10:  Easter Sunday and Monday (Pâques, closures)

May 1:  Labor Day (Fête due Travail or Fête du Premier Mai; closures)

May–July:  Versailles Festival (classical music, opera, dance, contemporary art)

May 6–8:  Roman Week, Nîmes

May 8:  VE (Victory in Europe) Day (Fête de la Victoire 1945 or Jour de la Liberation; closures, parades)

May 8–14:  Paris Beer Festival

May 12–21:  Fête de la Bretagne (cultural celebrations across Brittany, centered around St. Yves' Day on May 19)

May 13 (likely):  Night of Museums, across France (museums stay open late and for free)

May 16–27:  Cannes Film Festival

May 17–21:  Nuits Sonores, Lyon (electronic music festival)

May 18:  Ascension (closures)

May 18–20:  Joan of Arc Festival, Rouen (pageants)

May 25–28:  Monaco Grand Prix

May 28 & 29:  Pentecost and Whit Monday (closures)

Late May–mid-June:  D-Day Festival, across Normandy

June 2–27:  Festival of St. Denis, Paris (classical concerts by international artists)

June 3:  Paris Nuit Blanche (illuminated public art, concerts, all-night public transit)

June–July:  Nuits de Fourvière, Lyon (theater and music in a Roman theater)

June 4–6:  Rendez-vous aux Jardins (noteworthy gardens open to the public), Paris and elsewhere

June 6:  79th Anniversary of the Normandy D-Day Landing (Jour J)

June 8–18:  Rouen Armada (quinquennial sailboat festival with concerts, fireworks)

June 10–11:  Le Mans auto race, near Loire Valley

June 19–July 24:  Chorégies d'Orange (performances in Roman theater)

June 21:  Fête de la Musique (concerts and dancing in the streets throughout France)

June 28–July 12 (likely):  Jazz à Vienne, south of Lyon

July 1–21 (likely):  Colmar International Festival (classical music)

July 1–23:  Tour de France (starts in Bilbao this year; culminates, as always, on the Champs-Elysées in Paris)

July:  Carcassonne Festival (theater, music, dance, plus jousting matches and medieval festivities)

July 4–24:  Aix Festival (classical music and opera)

July 5–18 (likely):  Jazz à Juan, Antibes/Juan-les-Pins (international jazz festival)

July 6–25 (likely):  Avignon Festival (theater, dance, music)

July 7–30 (likely):  Beaune International Festival of Baroque Opera

July 9–August 21:  Paris Plages (ersatz beaches along the Seine and several canals)

July 10–30 (likely):  Festival Paris l'Été (theater, dance, concerts)

July 13–16:  Vieilles Charrues Festival, Carhaix (Brittany; France's biggest music festival)

July 14:  Bastille Day ("le 14 Juillet," closures, fireworks, revelry)

Six nights July 14–August 23 (likely):  International Fireworks Festival, Cannes

July 17–21:  Nice Jazz Festival

July 19–23:  Cornouaille Festival, Quimper (Breton music and cultural festivities)

July 21–August 25 (likely):  Jazz in Marciac, southwest France

August 4–8 (likely):  Corso de la Lavande (lavender festival with parades of lavender-covered floats, music, fireworks), Digne-les-Bains

August 5–6 (likely):  Jasmine Festival, Grasse (flower-themed parades)

August 15:  Assumption (closures)

August 16–19:  La Route du Rock Summer, St-Malo (rock acts)

August 17–22 (likely):  Fête de la Saint-Louis, Sète (near Montpellier; parades, fireworks, canal-boat "water-jousting")

August 25–September 2 (likely):  Silhouette Festival, Paris (short-film festival)

August 30–September 10 (likely):  Jazz at La Villette, Paris

September:  Wine harvest festivals across France

September–mid-February:  Festival d'Automne à Paris (arts festival)

September 5–6:  Braderie de Lille (world's largest flea market)

September 14–October 1 (likely):  Festival Musica, Strasbourg (contemporary classical music)

September 16–17 (likely):  Heritage days (Journée du patrimoine; special openings and tours of monuments and other historical sites across France)

September 24:  Technoparade, Paris (starts at Port Royal, ends at Place de la République)

September 27–30:  Monaco Yacht Show (pricey exhibition of mega-yachts)

October 4–8 (likely):  Fête des Vendanges, Montmartre neighborhood of Paris (grape harvest festival)

October 29 (likely):  Festival de La Pomme, Trévières (apple-harvest festival near Honfleur)

October 31–November 12 (likely):  Dijon International and Gastronomic Fair

November 1:  All Saints' Day (La Toussaint; closures)

November 11:  Armistice Day (closures)

November 17–19:  Les Trois Glorieuses, Beaune (wine auction and festival)

Late November–December 24:  Christmas markets (particularly fun in Strasbourg, Colmar, and Sarlat-la-Canéda)

December:  Christmas carousels, outdoor skating rinks, and avant-garde Christmas trees around town, Paris

December 6–10 (likely):  Les Rencontres Trans Musicales, Rennes (up-and-coming pop, rock, etc.)

December 9–16:  Rise Festival, Les Deux Alpes (dance music at ski resort)

December 25:  Christmas Day (Noël; closures)

December 26:  Second Christmas Day (closures in Alsace-Lorraine)

December 31:  New Year's Eve