Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Issues to Do on Bastille Day in Paris, France (2023 Information & Suggestions)

UPDATE FOR 2021: Bastille Day celebrations will resume this 12 months and are set to accommodate 25,000 viewers. The seated space won’t have formal spacing however social distancing and masks will probably be required. In the meantime, the standing space could have a 4-sqm spacing rule for each individual. All in all, folks will probably be allowed to enter Champs-Elysées for the parade.

One of many European celebrations that you must NOT miss out on can be the French Nationwide Day: ‘Bastille Day‘ in France!

Referred to as in lots of names: La Fête Nationale (The Nationwide Celebration), La Fête de la Bastille (Bastille Celebration), or Le Quatorze Juillet (the fourteenth of July), this wonderful affair is well known yearly on the 14th of July. With French folks all around the world celebrating this present day, naturally, it’s a HUGE celebration — extra so in Paris as they maintain festive occasions for all tastes and ages from the early hours of the morning until the wee hours of the night time.

That’s why this 12 months, I used to be extremely glad once I was invited to the ‘Metropolis of Love‘ to hitch the fête!

Come and take a look at this record of the prime issues to do in Paris which options the very best actions and excursions to do out and in of town!

About Bastille Day

  • Bastille Day commemorates the Storming of the Bastille (a fortress and jail for individuals who opposed France’s kings) on July 14, 1789, thereby marking the French Revolution.
  • Bastille Day solely grew to become a nationwide vacation in 1880 and the French proceed to have a good time it at present as a means of recognizing the importance of this occasion which ushered the finish of the royal monarchy and the start of its fashionable republic.
  • It’s only on Paris’ Bastille Day that you simply get to witness the oldest and largest common army parade in Europe! It occurs on the morning of July 14 on the Champs-Élysées.

So how was it for me? Effectively, I definitely had a swell time spending Bastille Day in Paris — it was memorable and I extremely recommend that you simply make it a degree to attend this too!

• • •

Issues to Do on Bastille Day

» 9AM: Witness the Army Parade (Défilé Militaire) at Champs-Élysées

As I’ve already talked about above, that is Europe’s oldest and largest common army parade; due to this fact, it’s fairly a sight to see!

All visitors will often be closed beginning at 7AM in Champs-Elysées and its surrounding streets, and it’s truly round 10AM that this system begins from the Arc de Triomphe — nevertheless, I’ve talked about 9AM as a result of it’s all the time greatest to return early. Given the hype that surrounds this army parade, it might get very crowded!

So throughout this parade, trumpets would usually first sign the arrival of the President of the French Republic, the Air Power will begin cruising low within the sky both doing stunts or spreading coloured smoke (after all within the colours of the French flag and it usually occurs round 10:45AM), after which the elite items of the French military will begin to parade down the picturesque avenue all the way down to Place de la Concorde on foot, on bikes, on horses, on tanks, on jeeps, and so forth.

Just lately, it has even turn into a customized for France to ask items from its shut allies to take part within the parade. For this 12 months, they’ve invited troops from Australia and New Zealand.


  • There will probably be a HUGE crowd. Tons of individuals will line up on either side of the avenue of Champs-Elysées and safety will even be fairly tight! Given this reality, it’s advisable that you simply come early; or in case you can’t, carry a stool to face on (I’ve seen some folks doing this).
  • It’s greatest to keep away from standing beneath a giant tree as a result of you’ll be able to miss seeing the aerial present through the parade. Probably the greatest spots to be in can be under George V avenue.
  • Another choice is to return round 8AM or earlier to order a seat in one of many open cafés or eating places in Champs-Elysées which are on an higher degree of a constructing.
    • You can even ebook an AirBnB or Paris lodge that has the mandatory vantage level to look over the avenue (simply be certain that there are not any bushes in the best way of your view!)
  • Among the metro stations close to Champs-Elysées will probably be closed from 8AM till 12PM. They’re not all the time the identical yearly, however more often than not it’s the stations of Concorde, George V, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Champs Elysees Clemenceau, and Tuileries that will probably be closed. That being stated, do be certain that to examine earlier than you go!
    • Earlier than and after the present, I took the Saint-Philippe du Roule metro cease and it was only a 5-minute stroll to get to the avenue space.
    • To examine which metro stations will probably be closed, go right here.
  • After the Bastille Day parade, you’ll be able to stroll on the Avenue des Champs-Elysées till 6PM because it transforms right into a pedestrian-only highway in the meanwhile so go mad snapping photos away on this spot!

– – –

» Remainder of the Day: See Paris’ Sights or Watch a FREE Film Open air

Although it’s a nationwide vacation, lots of Paris’ eating places, museums, and points of interest keep open — a few of them may even be entered for FREE. For that purpose, you must make use of this time to go to the Louvre Museum, the Notre Dame de Paris, the Musée d’Orsay, the Chateâu de Versailles and a lot extra!

For concepts, go learn my information right here:

» READ: High 10 FREE Issues to Do in Paris

If nevertheless, you simply wish to chill with associates, you’ll be able to attend a FREE Open Air Cinema within the inexperienced lawns of Parc de la Villette that’s positioned within the nineteenth district within the northeastern a part of Paris. It runs from July to August as a part of its annual Open Air Movie Pageant — so it’s top-of-the-line issues to do on Bastille Day.

You possibly can all the time lease chairs and blankets on website if in case you didn’t get the possibility to carry one. However like I stated, it’s open for all! If you wish to entry the garden on different dates, you want to register on the La Villette web site. (Most movies, nevertheless, are in French however there are additionally overseas movies being performed however with French subtitles.)

For more information, you’ll be able to examine by right here.

– – –

» 9PM: Catch the Dwell Live performance and Fireworks Present at Champ de Mars

One more spotlight of this present day that’s nice to do with associates as you carry alongside a picnic blanket, some meals, and bottles of wine!

So at the beginning, the dwell classical live performance will begin at 9:15PM on the foot of the Eiffel Tower that includes the Orchestre Nationwide de France and the Choir of Radio France — this will change within the coming years, however thus far they’ve been persistently doing it. They are going to carry out well-liked present tunes and soundtracks, and by the top of the night time (through the fireworks present) they may play the French nationwide tune: Le Marseillaise.

The Fireworks Present will begin at precisely 11PM and the dazzling lights will set off from the Eiffel Tower and the gardens of Trocadéro for about 35 minutes.


  • As per standard, Parisians and guests alike will probably be flocking to this, so if you wish to have the very best view, reserve your picnic spot on Champ de Mars at round 5PM. (Some folks even begin marking their territory on the early hours of the morning!)
    • Relaxation assured, there are different spots in Paris which are good for watching the fireworks (reminiscent of that on a Seine river cruise). I didn’t handle to get a spot in Champ de Mars so I ended up within the bridge of Pont de l’Alma which nonetheless had nice views of all of it (as you’ll be able to see in my video and within the picture above)! For the opposite greatest locations to view the fireworks show, you’ll be able to learn my put up under…

» READ: The Greatest Spots to Watch Bastille Day Fireworks in Paris, France

  • Remember that there are only a few public bathrooms and they’ll find yourself being crowded too; so I recommend that you simply put together some money beforehand for purchasing low cost drinks in close by cafés or bars with a purpose to use their restroom.
  • Very similar to the Bastille Day Army Parade, metro stations inside the neighborhood will probably be closed earlier than and/or after the present.
    • Even when there are close by metro stations open after the Fireworks Present, they are going to be full of folks so I recommend that you simply put on comfy footwear for strolling because you would possibly have to stroll a bit additional out from the Champs de Mars space to get to a metro station that’s open and fewer crowded.
    • After the present, I needed to stroll a bit to achieve the Iéna metro station (because it was the closest connection to my lodge positioned within the Bastille neighborhood). As soon as I used to be there, I needed to look ahead to 10 minutes nonetheless till the gang thinned a bit extra.
    • To examine which metro stations will probably be closed, go right here.
    • For those who assume you may get a taxi or Uber — don’t. The encircling space will probably be in a jam so that you’re actually higher off strolling.

– – –

» Late Night time: Attend a Fireman’s Ball (Les Bals des Pompiers) 

One good method to keep away from the busy metro stations after the Fireworks Present: make a detour and attend a close-by Fireman’s Ball!

Because the title goes, this celebration takes place in hearth stations (casernes) round Paris’ 20 arrondissements — so sure, you’ll be able to celebration with (scorching) firemen and French people! *wink*

Whereas there are many selections to go for Firemen’s Balls, it’s stated that the very best events are carried out on the eve of Bastille Day (July 13). You possibly can see on this hyperlink a listing of the collaborating hearth stations.

These should not just for leisure however for charity too since there’s all the time a small entrance charge to be paid for and naturally, snacks and drinks to purchase. For those who’re up for it, the firemen will even be promoting raffle tickets and once more, the entire proceeds will probably be given to charities or for the advance of their very own services.

For those who keep in these locations up till late night time, most of them will remodel right into a dance membership full of youthful folks, full with a DJ.


  • These all-night soirees begin at round 9PM till the early hours of the morning (however most would wind down round midnight)
  • These events don’t solely occur on the 14th of July but additionally on the thirteenth; however take observe that metro stations are open till 2:15AM solely throughout lately.
  • If you would like an entire record of Fireman’s Ball events going round in Paris, examine by this hyperlink.

• • •

» High Paris Excursions «

Come and take a look at my record of the ‘Greatest Motels in Paris’ which options the highest beneficial selections for affordable to luxurious lodging selections.

• • •


The month of July is actually a time whereby the entire of France comes alive, and even in case you’re not an area, you’re all the time welcome to have a good time Bastille Day with the French folks!

If you wish to be on the heart of all of it, then for certain a visit to Paris on July 14 is a should. With tons of occasions and actions to select from, it’s now my hope that you simply get probably the most out of this present day with the assistance of this information. Bonne Fête Nationale!

Have you ever seen my newest vlog?

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest Articles