We take a look at some of our favourite events and fun things to do in France in July.
Get your sunglasses ready and enjoy a sunny day out as summer in France means there’s loads to do and see from the famous 14 July celebrations (known as Bastille Day to English speakers) to arts, foodie and music events…
Public Holidays in France in July
July 14th Bastille Day – celebrations all over France in honour of La Revolution.
Major Events in France July 2023
1-23 July, 2023: Tour de France starting in Copenhagen, Denmark and finishing in the Champs-Elysees Paris. letour.fr
23-30 July, 2023: The Woman’s Tour de France returns after an absence of more than 30 years. Start on the day of the final stage 21 of the Men’s Tour. 1028km eight-day race will take in back to back mountain stages as well as gravel sectors, flat stages and more. Starting at the Eiffel Tower and ending atop La Planche des Belles Filles in the Vosges mountains. Letourfemmes.fr
Events in France July
Cognac, Charente department: Cognac Blues Passion. 4-9 July, 2023. Festival held in the beautiful public gardens of Cognac. During the day visit the famous houses of Cognac (Hennessy, Remy Martin, Martell and Baron Otard which is located in the castle where François I was born. See website for full details bluespassions.com
Cognac: Fête du Cognac is a major event to celebrate the delicious Cognac, Pineau des Charentes and Vins de Pays Charentais plus culinary Charentais. The Cognac Festival takes place from 27-29 July 2023 and you’ll discover Cognac the eau de vie in all its forms plus great street food along the Marina Cognac. www.lafeteducognac.fr
Aix-en-Provence, Provence: Spectacular music festival from 4-24 July 2022, in various locations in this lovely town. www.festival-aix.com
Avignon, Provence: Festival d’Avignon. This annual arts festival is one of the world’s greatest with performances given in more than 20 venues throughout the city and beyond. There are hundreds more “unofficial” shows. Takes places 5-25 July 2022 www.festival-avignon.com
Arras, Pas-de-Calais: Main Square Music Festival. 30 June – 2 July, 2023. Arras holds one of Europe’s major musical events – The Main Square Festival. It’s a mix of the best up-and-coming artists with leading international artists. Past performances have included Sting, The Prodigy, Mike and the Mechanics and many more well known names. www.mainsquarefestival.fr
Nevers, Burgundy: Les Z’accros d’ma rue is a famous cultural street art festival which takes over the whole town of Nevers with many free performances: urban arts, brass bands, plays, concerts, circus acts and so much more. 3-9 July, 2023 www.zaccros.org
Nice, Jazz Festival. Begun in 1948, the world famous Nice Jazz Festival is one of the oldest in France. Held in the centre of the city you’ll find there’s a wide-ranging mix of jazz, from gospel and blues to urban funk and even experimental sounds. 17-21 July, 2023. en.nicetourisme.com www.nicejazzfestival.fr
Bayonne: Les Fêtes de Bayonne. The running of the heifers in the Place Saint Andre square, in the heart of the Petit Bayonne quarter is a popular event in the area. The “Corso lumineux”, the evening parade of decorated floats regularly attracts more than 350,000 spectators. From 26-30 July, 2023 Bayonne will swing to the rhythm of the “Bandas” (roaming bands)
Aix-les-Bains, Savoie Mont Blanc. From 5-8 July, 2023 the Musilac Festival hosts dozens of international and French acts. More than 70,000 music lovers attend this lakeside festival in Aix-les-Bains, by the stunning Lake Bourget. It has become one of the largest rock festivals in France. www.musilac.com
Montreuil-sur-Mer, Pas de Calais. Every 14 July. A grand Antiques Fair takes over the while of the upper town. Montreuil-sur-Mer was the inspiration for Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables and the town certainly puts on a great show. Hundreds of stalls, music, fireworks and terrific restaurants.
Hyères, French Riviera. The MIDI Festival has become something of a mecca for music lovers. From 21-23 July, 2022, concerts are held in enthralling locations: The Villa Noailles, a pine forest out under the stars, the windsurfing Almanarre beach, as well as the Hyères racecourse. www.midi-festival.com
Champagne: Champagne Route Festival. Annual champagne tasting festival (La Route du Champagne en Fête). Buy a ‘flute passport’ from a welcome point, then try tastings at different cellars and buy (often at cheaper prices). Local restaurants lay on gourmet meals and the villages are decorated with flowers in celebration of France’s most famous beverage. The festival takes place in a different part of the Champagne region each year, so check the website for details. 29-30 July, 2022. routeduchampagne.com
Chamonix, Haute-Savoie: Free concerts set in some of Chamonix’s most amazing locations – such as the top of the Aiguille du Midi, Lac Blanc and Grand Montet. The July Cosmo Jazz Festival features brass bands playing in breath taking sceneries. Definitely not to be missed. 22-29 July, 2022. www.cosmojazzfestival.com
Please note: We check every website for dates and details personally but changes do happen from time to time – please check website for confirmation.