CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to France Magazines today CLICK HERE

National holidays in France in May

PUBLISHED: 16:00 21 April 2018 | UPDATED: 16:33 25 April 2018

It is traditional to give Lily of the Valley on 1 May © Atout France / Emmanuel Valentin

It is traditional to give Lily of the Valley on 1 May © Atout France / Emmanuel Valentin

There are four national holidays in France in May this year, when many businesses close for the day. Make sure you know when they are so you can start planning your long weekends!

If you’re shortly spending time in France, be aware that May has many a national holiday, with four taking place this month. Two of them fall on a Tuesday and one of them falls on a Thursday so you may find many people decide to ‘faire le pont’ and take the Monday/Friday off too! On national holidays you may find that a number of businesses including shops, banks, post offices and even cafés and restaurants are closed for the occasion.

Fête du Travail, 1 May

The first is on Tuesday 1 May – the Fête du Travail or Labour Day, which celebrates the introduction of the eight-hour working day in 1919. Another celebration falls on 1 May; the Fête du Muguet, when tradition dictates that loved ones are presented with a sprig of lily of the valley as a good luck charm.

____________________________________________________________________

Related articles

Bizarre French superstitions you should know about

The French tradition of La Toussaint

____________________________________________________________________

VE Day, 8 May

Tuesday 8 May sees France celebrate VE Day, (Victory in Europe Day) the official end of World War II in Europe. There are often parades and church services held to mark the occasion, especially if it is an anniversary year.

Ascension Day, 10 May

Thursday 10 May is Ascension Day – the date when Christians believe Jesus ascended to heaven following his crucifixion and resurrection. Many people take the Friday off to create a four-day weekend (a process known as ‘faire le pont’ – literally, ‘to make the bridge’).

Whit Monday, 21 May

Monday 21 May us Whit Monday, the day after Whit Sunday or Pentecost. Pentecost is observed 10 days after Ascension Day and 50 days after Easter and commemorates the day when Jesus's disciples and other Christians received the Holy Spirit.

Make your plans accordingly!

Find out what other events are happening in France in May

Learn about other French traditions at Christmas and April Fool's Day

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Complete France visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Complete France staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Complete France account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Article by Living France Living France

Subscribe for

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