5 ISSUES FOR £5 Subscribe to France Magazines today click here

July events in France

PUBLISHED: 15:50 30 June 2017 | UPDATED: 16:00 30 June 2017

Paris Plages © Alfred / Sipa / CRT Paris Ile-de-France

Paris Plages © Alfred / Sipa / CRT Paris Ile-de-France


From flower festivals to outdoor theatre festivities and open-air music concerts, there are so many ways to make sure you have fun in the sun in France this July

Paris Plages, Paris

During the summer months, many Parisians flee the city heat in favour of the countryside, but those that stay flock to the banks of the Seine which are transformed into ‘urban beaches’ for the Paris Plages event. The beaches take over the newly opened Rives de Seine and the Bassin de la Villette with palm trees, deck chairs, watersports and plenty of sporting activities linked to Paris’s bid to host the 2024 Olympics. Kicking off on 8 July to 3 September, the city’s urban beaches offer all sorts of shoreside activity from rowing and pedalboating to ballroom dancing and zumba every day from 9am to midnight. Or, if you’d prefer, just lounge on one of the many deckchairs with a good book and something chilled from the beach bar and enjoy Paris when it sizzles.


Bastille Day in Paris © istockphotos Bastille Day in Paris © istockphotos

Bastille Day

On the 14 July, a ‘Vive la France’ spirit sweeps France for the annual Fête de Nationale de 14 Juillet celebrations. Better known to the British as Bastille Day, the jubilations marks the storming of Paris’s Bastille prison in 1789 with spectacular firework displays and an impressive military parade along the Avenue des Champs-Elysées. Whether you stay up late for a fireworks extravaganza or celebrate with a traditional French breakfast, there’s no better day to indulge our inner Francophile.


Don’t miss

What is Bastille Day?

There is a new 10-ha park along the River Seine in Paris


Cinema Plein Air in Paris © Stephane Kovalsky / EPPGHV Cinema Plein Air in Paris © Stephane Kovalsky / EPPGHV

Cinema Plein Air, Parc de la Villette, Paris

Watch some of your favourite films under a starry Paris sky this summer at the Cinéma Plein Air in Parc de la Villette from 20 July to 20 August. For its 27th edition, the open-air film festival has a theme of ‘à la table’ and is showing films with a food link, from Disney’s Ratatouille to Billy Walter’s Sabrina starring Audrey Hepburn. All movies are shown in their original language with French subtitles. Deckchairs are available to rent from 7.30pm for €7 or you could just sprawl out on a picnic blanket.


Festival de Cornouaile © An Tour Tan Festival de Cornouaile © An Tour Tan

Festival de Cornouaille, Quimper, Brittany

As the cultural capital of Brittany, Quimper has been hosting one of the region’s most important celebrations in the calendar for over 90 years – the Festival de Cornouaille. From 18-23 July the town will celebrate its Celtic heritage with lots of traditional music and dancing that will be sure to entertain the 250,000 visitors. From well-known names performing sell-out concerts in the Parc des Expositions to bagpipers playing on street corners and traditional dancers in the medieval streets, the six-day event is sure to be a party to remember.



Don’t miss

Lose yourself in these hidden parks in Paris

17 things to do in Paris for families


Festival d'Avignon © Christophe Raynaud de Loge Festival d'Avignon © Christophe Raynaud de Loge

Festival d’Avignon, Avignon, Provence-ALpes-Côte d’Azur

Each year in July, theatre-goers in their thousands make their way to the Provence department of Vaucluse for the Festival d’Avignon, which has been taking place in the town since 1947. One of the biggest international contemporary live performance events, the festival features a programme of music, dance, art and theatre performed in venues across the city, including the historical Palais des Papes. The festival is taking place from 6-26 July 2017.


Voyages a Nantes © Esquisse Laurent Pernot / LVAN Voyages a Nantes © Esquisse Laurent Pernot / LVAN

Voyages à Nantes, Nantes, Pays-de-la-Loire

You don’t have to step foot in a museum to see some truly great art in Nantes, as the urban art trail, Voyages à Nantes shows. From 1 July to 27 August the marked 12km route allows visitors to take in the city’s contemporary creations (including its mechanical elephant mascot) at their own leisure. You’ll find something new everywhere – from the city’s historic side streets to the old squares and parks. There are 35 stages in total and most of the sites are free to enter.


Mondial Air Ballons © Bennie Bos Mondial Air Ballons © Bennie Bos

Mondial Air Ballons, Chambley Aerodrome, Grand-Est

If there’s one thing worth waking up early for it’s seeing hundreds of hot-air balloons filling an early morning sky, as it does every day at the Mondial Air Ballons in Meurthe-et-Moselle. From 21-30 July, visitors can watch the balloons take off each morning at 6.15am and in the evenings at 6.30pm. There are also air workshops where you can learn about astronomy and meteorology, among other things and after dark, you can enjoy group star observations, and a mesmerising night-time balloon show.



Don’t miss

The complete guide to the Tour de France

Quiz: How much do you really know about the Tour de France?


Nice Jazz Festival © Thomas Dalmasso Nice Jazz Festival © Thomas Dalmasso

Nice Jazz Festival, Nice, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

When Nice Jazz Festival began in 1948, Louis Armstrong was the headline act, the first of many international stars to perform in the Riviera capital’s big music event. This year’s festival is being held from 17-21 July, with singer Mary J Blige and bandleader Herbie Hancock among the line-up. Concerts are held in the Théâtre de Verdure and on the Masséna stage, which can hold up to 9,000 fans between them.


Fete du Cognac © Aline Aubert Fete du Cognac © Aline Aubert

Fête du Cognac, Charente, Nouvelle Aquitaine

Celebrate the grape-base liqueur cognac in style during this foodie festival which higlights cognac, of course, but also other local products such as the Pineau des Charentes and Marenne oysters. Visitors settle in fishermen’s shacks on the port to enjoy food and drink while live music is played every night from 27-29 July.


Ideklic children's festival Ideklic children's festival

Idéklic, Moirans-en-Montagne, Jura, Burgundy-Franche-Comté

Every July since 1990, the small commune of Moirans-en-Montagne in the Jura department has been taken over by fairy-tale gardens, parades and street theatre for the international children’s festival known as Idéklic. From 11-14 July, youngsters will be able to let their creative streak run wild at more than 50 workshops focusing on everything from making violins to learning about the different sounds made by stones when they hit the floor



Don’t miss

7 top things to do in Provence this summer

Delicious French recipes to try this summer


Opéra de Baugé Opéra de Baugé

Opéra de Baugé, Maine-et-Loire, Pays-de-la-Loire

British expats John and Bernadette Grimmett founded their Opéra de Baugé festival in 2002 and the annual event held in the grounds of their fairy-tale château in the Loire now draws crowds of over 3,000. Enjoy the refined nature of the opera and arrive early for a glass of champagne and enjoy a picnic on the lawn. This year the event runs from 27 July to 6 August.


Equestria © Antoine Bassaler Equestria © Antoine Bassaler

Equestria, Tarbes, Haute-Pyrénées, Occitanie

The town of Tarbes has a long equestrian tradition and every summer it hosts an equestrian show at the National Stud Farm. Featuring over 300 horses, the 23rd edition of Equestria takes place from 26-30 July, showcasing a daring and visually striking show of equestrian art with the ‘Night of Creations’ gala a highlight of the five-day event.


Festival du Lin et de lAiguille Festival du Lin et de lAiguille

Festival du Lin et de l’Aiguille, Normandy

Every year in July, nine communes in the Pays de Caux in Normandy team up for the Festival du Lin et de l’Aiguille. From 7-9 July, the town will expect thousands of visitors making their way to the area to see over 20 exhibitions of contemporary and traditional textile art. Linen fabric fairs, fashion shows and tours of the Terre de Lin factory are among the many highlights of the three-day festivities. Alternatively, you could just take a trip to see the flower in its original form, with violet blues blossoming all around sprawling fields spotted all over the area.


Like this? You might enjoy:

June events in France

What is Bastille Day?

The complete guide to the Tour de France

Article by Living France Living France

More from Travel

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Looking for a new route for your next cycling holiday to France? On the ‘Trail of Two Cities’ route you can cycle from London to Paris and discover many beautiful towns and villages along the way

Read more
Cycling in France
Thursday, June 14, 2018

There are 14 villages on the shortlist to win the title of ‘France’s favourite village 2018’ – explore them all and vote in our poll to let us know which one is your favourite

Read more
Monday, June 11, 2018

In a patchwork of landscapes, the Upper Valley of the Aude boasts unspoilt countryside and a protected natural environment, which is perfect for hikers and nature lovers looking to escape the crowds of Carcassonne

Read more
Friday, June 8, 2018

Cycling through the Loire Valley past vineyards and châteaux, dressed in vintage clothes and riding a retro bike… what’s not to love about the Anjou Vélo Vintage?

Read more
Cycling in France
Thursday, June 7, 2018

Need ideas for this summer holiday in France? There are plenty of routes for a multi-activity trip in the Maurienne valley in the French Alps

Read more
French Alps
Tuesday, June 5, 2018

From recycling schemes to public parks and green spaces, a number of French cities are making an effort to become more environmentally friendly. According to a report these are the 10 greenest cities in France

Read more
Pays de la Loire
Friday, June 1, 2018

From famous gardens in Antibes and Nice to less well-known jardins in Menton and Mandelieu-la-Napoule, there are plenty of remarkable gardens to visit along the Côte d’Azur

Read more
Provence-Alpes-Cote d Azur
Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Explore Europe on a CroisiEurope river cruise and discover sunlit vineyards, vibrant cities and fascinating places...

Read more
Boating in France
Friday, May 25, 2018

Fancy something a little different during your next trip to France? Visit one of France’s many weird and wonderful museums

Read more
Culture and attractions
Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Soothe aches and pains and take in beautiful architecure with a visit to these spa towns renowned for their thermal waters

Read more
Short breaks
Subscribe today

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

France Forum

Questions about France? Visit our free France forum to get help and advice from thousands of other Francophiles and expats. Topics include: property, tax, law, travelling, pets, education, healthcare and much more.

Join the forum

Most Read

Join us on social media

France magazine
Living France magazine
French Property News magazine

Enter our competitions

Win books, DVDs, travel and even holidays in France in our great competitions! Take a look at our latest competitions…

Enter now