Events round-up: what’s on in France in 2016

11th February, 2016
Packed with annual traditions as well as sporting and one-off events, 2016 in France is shaping up to be a great year, promising something for everyone. Whether you’re looking to soak up the culture as a couple or you’re planning unforgettable luxury family holidays, in France you definitely won’t be short of things to do! Here’s a roundup of some of the major events you’ll be able to take part in near our villas in 2016:

Printemps de Bourges – 12-17 April

Situated within the Loire Valley region is the city of Bourges, home to the annual Printemps de Bourges (Spring in Bourges) music festival, which attracts music fans both young and old. The festival attracts not only local and national bands but also world famous bands and artists such as Barry White, U2 and Stevie Wonder. Alongside the music there’s also plenty of other distractions, from theatre and comedy to poetry, art and a food market.

Cannes Film Festival – 11-22 May

One of the world’s largest film festivals, Cannes offers the opportunity to see several films first before anywhere else, as well as to mingle with the rich and famous. Many screenings and awards ceremonies are invitation-only, though there are still plenty of chances to see your favourite stars on the red carpet at gala screenings, while the Cinema de la Plage offers film screenings as an open-air cinema on the beautiful sandy beach.

Monaco Grand Prix - 13-15 May

Held each year at the Circuit de Monaco on the city streets of Monte Carlo, the Monaco Grand Prix is possibly the most difficult race on the Formula 1 circuit. First established in 1929, during the race Monaco becomes a location of glamour and prestige even more so than usual, as the rich and famous gather to watch some of the world’s fastest cars zip around the circuit.

Rolland Garros (French Open) – 25 May-5 June

One of four Grand Slam tennis events to take place around the world, the Rolland-Garros tournament is the world’s most famous tennis tournament played on a clay surface, attracting the world’s greatest tennis players. The sheer talent of the competitors involved, combined with the great weather found in Paris, makes this one of the most popular events on the tennis circuit.

Euro 2016 – 10 June-10 July

Euro 2016 is the largest football tournament in Europe, with national teams from all over the continent competing for footballing glory. This year, it is the turn of France to host proceedings, with matches spread out in stadiums across eight cities, meaning there’s plenty of time for sightseeing in between each game.

Le Mans 24 Hours – 18-19 June

Le Mans is one of the world’s most famous motoring events and the oldest endurance race in the world, with teams competing to see who can go the furthest fastest within a 24-hour period. Initially founded in 1923 as an alternative to the Grand Prix, the event takes places every June, bringing motorsport fans from all over the world to Le Mans’ Circuit de la Sarthe.

Tour de France – 2-24 July

Perhaps the world’s greatest cycling competition, the Tour de France brings about a real cycling frenzy every year in France, with many people getting into the spirit of the race by taking to their own two wheels. Spanning 3 weeks and over 3500 km, the Tour de France dates back to 1903 and is one of the most exciting events spanning a wide area of France. The route changes every year, though competitors are guaranteed to face some tough challenges and exhausting mountain climbs.

Bastille Day – 14 July

Bastille Day, otherwise known as La Fete de la Bastille, is one of France’s celebrated national holidays, and marks the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille Prison in 1789, one of the events which helped to trigger the French Revolution. Celebrated all over France, towns and cities will come alive with parades by day, while by night, the sky will be lit up with thousands of fireworks.

Festival de Cornouaille – 19-24 July

Perhaps one of the largest celebrations of Breton culture in the world, the town of Quimper hosts hundreds of performers, singers and dancers in this lively display of Brittany’s distinctive Celtic culture. Dating back to 1922, the townspeople don traditional clothing for musical and theatre performances which take place during the day, while by night, visitors can enjoy the Fest Noz concerts, where you’ll also have the chance to sample traditional Breton food and drink.

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Image: Yann Caradec, available under Creative Commons