Five great events happening in France this July

29th June, 2016
Summer is finally upon us, which means it is one of the best times to be visiting France. The beautiful weather, accompanied by multiple festivals across the country make for a perfect holiday destination, so if you are look at staying at one of our villas in France this July, take a look at some of the events that are happening across the country.

Main Square Festival - Arras, 1st-3rd July

The Main Square Festival returns to Arras, Pas-de-Calais on the first weekend of July. Acts this year including headliners Iggy Pop, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, The Offspring, Disclosure and Les Insus.

Other acts include Jake Bugg, Ellie Goulding and the Cayman Kings, who all take to the stage in Vauden Citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which promises a unique festival experience without the muddy fields!

International Festival of Baroque Opera - Beaune, 8th-31st July

If you are looking for something a little more traditional, the International Festival of Baroque Opera in the walled city of Beaune opens this year on the 8th July with a recital of Handel’s Cantates Italiennes by acclaimed countertenor Andreas Scholl.

Other notable performers include Solemn Vespers and Vivica Genaux, who will interpret the role of Dido in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas and the Accentus Choir singing Mozart’s The Coronation Mass. Concerts take place in the fifteenth century almshouse Hospices de Beaune and in the Basilique Notre-Dame.

La Villette Open-Air Cinema Festival - Paris, 13th July-21st August

Every year, the Parc de la Villette open its gates for the largest open-air cinema festival in Paris. What’s more, you can enjoy the festival for free, unless you opt to pay for a deckchair.

This year, expect to see a mix of modern blockbusters – including Interstellar and Casino Royale – alongside cult classics such as Miami Vice and Zefferelli’s Romeo and Juliet. You can also expect to see short films by up-and-coming directors shown on Saturday evening.

Bastille Day – Paris, 14th July
On 14th July 1789, the discontent in Paris finally bubbled over and led to an angry crowd storming Bastille Prison and demanding the release of the prisoners. At the time, there were only seven inmates, but the act was a symbol of the abuse of the monarchy.

Every 14th July since 1880, the day has been celebrated as a national holiday across the country, but the focal point of the festivities is Paris.
On the 13th and 14th, the fire stations in Paris open their doors to celebrators for the “Bals des Pompiers” and on the 14th, a military parade descends on the Champs Elysée in front of a huge, flag-waving crowd.

Later on, expect to see a beautiful firework displayed from the Eiffel Tower and the Trocadéro gardens will light up the skies of Paris.

Lavender Festivals – Provence, various dates

If you are a lover of lavender, July is the perfect time to visit Provence, with the fields carpeted in purple, and the multiple fragrant lavender festivals taking place around the region. The Lavender Museum located in Coustellet also offers free demonstrations of lavender distillation from the 1st July to the 25th August. For more information on the lavender festivals, take a look at this website here.  

Photo courtesy of Pierre-Yves Beaudouin, under Creative Commons