EVENTS & FESTIVALS

France 2017


Le Havre 500th Anniversary

Le Havre, Normandy

http://www.lehavretourisme.com/en/

The city of Le Havre, on the English Channel in Normandy, was severely bombed during the Second World War– now a UNESCO World Heritage – Le Havre is exceptional among many reconstructed cities for its unity and integrity. The destroyed area was rebuilt according to the plan of a team headed by Auguste Perret, from 1945 to 1964. The site forms the administrative, commercial and cultural centre of Le Havre.

Fête de la Musique 

June 21, 2017 

www.fetedelamusique.culture.fr

First held in France in 1982 on the summer solstice, this music festival is now an international success, with events from Philadelphia to Brisbane to Beijing. It remains a popular gathering of, often, spontaneous events that give equal place to amateur and professional musicians with no particular focus on any one kind of music. More than anything, it is a showcase for new musical trends and a renewal of traditional music, whether world music, choirs, rap or techno.

European Heritage Days – Journées du Patrimoine

September, 2017 

www.journeesdupatrimoine.culture.fr 

Every year since 1984, the Ministry of Culture has thrown open the doors of its greatest monuments to the general public. Celebrated throughout Europe starting in 1991, guided access is now made available to any institution providing an important public service, form the best known to the most obscure. Today, more than 16,000 sites in France alone are responsible for 20,000 events, including guided tours, workshops and demonstrations, concerts, theatrical performances, walks etc.

Gastronomy Festival – Fête de la Gastronomie

Fourth weekend of September 2017 

www.economie.gouv.fr/fete-gastronomie 

The Fête de la Gastronomie is all about food and cooking, an occasion when the general public and food professionals get together to celebrate the unique, unifying, identity-creating elements of French heritage, now even registered on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The aim is to spotlight gastronomy in all its many and diverse forms and invite everyone, whether true foodies or just curious observers, to enjoy French gastronomy’s many treasures, wherever they may be. 

GRAND EST – Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne-Lorraine

ALSACE

Christmas Market in Alsace 

Throughout Alsace End of November 2016 to January 6th 2017 (Epiphany) 

http://noel.tourisme-alsace.com/en

Christmas in Alsace is when towns and villages shine with a thousand lights. It’s also a time of storytelling, caroling, renewing ancient regional traditions, enjoying recipes handed down through generations and rediscovering one’s youth in a friendly and generous atmosphere. The festival period begins on the day of St. Catherine and finishes on the Epiphany. From the north to the south of the region, Christmas awakens the very soul of Alsace.

CHAMPAGNE 

La Route Touristique du Champagne en Fête

Sarce

August 5-6, 2017

http://www.cap-c.fr/route-champagne-2017/

 

In the south of Champagne, wine growers from the Seine Valley invite 25,000 to 40,000 people to a musical and gourmet stroll in the heart of their villages. The goal of this extraordinary weekend is to open wine cellars and bottles in a different part of the Côte de Bar each year. A champagne glass and trip log provide access to a free tasting in every participating domain.

Puppet Theater World Festival

Charleville-Mézières

September 16-24, 2017 

www.festival-marionnette.com 

This is now the biggest event of its kind in the world. Every two years, the festival showcases cultures and traditions from all places and times. A festival of discoveries and creations, companies from the five continents, worldwide premieres 250 companies in halls and in the streets. The biggest meeting of puppeteers over the world takes place every two years in Charleville-Mézières.

LORRAINE

Lorraine Mondial Air Ballon 

Chambley-Bussières

July 21-30, 2017 

www.pilatre-de-rozier.com 

Every two years, in July, the largest international gathering of approximately 1,000 hot air balloons and their pilots from more than 60 countries and all seven continents takes place at the Chambley-Bussières air field, between Nancy and Metz. Fun programs include first flights, aerial demonstrations, kites, mini balloons, imaginative balloons in new shapes and night flights. 

Mirabelle Plum Festival – Fête de la Mirabelle

Metz

End of August 2017

 www.tourisme-lorraine.fr/mirabelle 

A delicate aroma, a sweet and juicy flesh, a subtle scent, the mirabelle plum is a real treasure for Lorraine. This yellow little round plum has made Lorraine its land of excellence. Discover all the secrets of the mirabelle with a walk among the flowering orchards or try it in a unique recipe. Harvested when fully ripe, the fruit can be used in a variety of dishes. Enjoy it all year round! The mirabelle plum festival celebrates this golden fruit through parades, balls, performances and fireworks. 

Christmas Markets in Metz 

Metz

November to December, 2017

www.noelmetz.com

This is the most important Christmas market in the east of France, marking the beginning of the end of the year. Like a little village set in the center of the city, more than 80 pine-wood chalets of all different colors sprout into being and draw crowds of young and old into a welcome fairytale setting. The Christmas market takes over several locations in the city and includes Europe’s largest Ferris wheel and a huge skating rink. 

St Nicolas Festival 

Nancy

Early December, 2017 

www.tourisme-lorraine.fr

Amid so many other festivities, the St Nicolas in Nancy is the event not to be missed, the most important weekend celebration of the year. The whole city gives itself over to the party with theater, acrobats or musicians in every decoration-draped street. Kids typically receive gifts, and in some cases they’re more important than those shared at Christmas. There are also major St. Nicolas festivals in the villages of St. Nicolas de Port and Bar-le-Duc, and the cities of Metz and Epinal. 

Foie Gras Regional Festival

Phalsbourg

December, 2017

www.phalsbourg.fr 

This unmissable gourmet rendezvous gives pride of place to foie gras. Forty or so producers and artisans offer tastings and sale of their regional products in parallel with activities like cooking demonstrations with regional chefs and workshops. Other regional products are also on display, including wine, mirabelle plums, cheese, bread, chocolate, oils, honey, farm produce and even oysters.

NOUVELLE AQUITAINE – Aquitaine-Limousin-Poitou-Charentes

AQUITAINE 

Truffle Festival (Fête de la Truffe)

Sarlat

January 14-15, 2017

www.sarlat-tourisme.com

Every year, Sarlat gives itself over to the refinement of foie gras and truffles. The extremely popular festival is homage to local gastronomy during which everyone can taste these noble products and meet great names in French cuisine. Events include cooking classes, demonstrations and competitions; truffle hunting and identification; and, of course, tastings! 

 

Basque Music Festival 

Throughout Basque Aquitaine 

September, 2017

www.musiquecotebasque.fr 

Over the course of six decades, Musique en Cote Basque has presented to the public the greatest soloists, ensembles and chamber orchestras in France. Always mindful of local realities and in search of ways to create unique moments in lively locales, Musique en Cote Basque brings to life the music of Schubert, Ravel, Falla, Franck and Rimsky-Korsakov in the exquisite, purple- and gold-tinted light of September’s evenings.

POITOU-CHARENTES 

44th International Comic Strip Art Festival

Angoulême

January 26-29, 2017

www.bdangouleme.com 

Each year in Angoulême, the International Comic Strip Festival invades the town during the last weekend in January. Over 250 exhibitors and 1,600 authors from 36 nationalities will congregate with 220,000 festival goers. In 2014, the 41st edition was chaired byillustrator Willem. The Jury awarded the First Prize to Bill Watterson for Calvin and Hobbes. 

Floating Market 

Le Vanneau

July, 2017

www.tourisme-deux-sevres.com 

In the heart of Deux-Sèvres, the Marais Poitevin is a marvelous aquatic labyrinth interspersed with little villages. In one such hamlet, Le Vanneau Irleau, the last Saturday of July sees a big floating market. Nearly 15,000 people attended the market last year, music to the ears of over 50 local producers selling their wares along the canals. 

Francofolies 

La Rochelle

June 8-17, 2017

www.francofolies.com

All styles of French language music converge at one of France’s leading festivals held each summer. Les Francofolies welcomes all genres from soul to folk as well as hip hop, electro, blues and rock. With more than 250 concerts in eight different venues programmed across five days and nights, there is plenty to keep the most enthusiastic festival-goers entertained. 

Cognac Blues Passions 

Cognac

July 4-8, 2017

www.bluespassions.com 

World class music festival on the banks of the Charente. Cognac’s most famous export is undoubtedly its namesake but the town’s fame is now rising in the music world too thanks to its annual festival, Cognac Blues Passions. While the heart of the festival remains the blues and blues-derived music, the recent festivals have broadened their repertoire to include other music from across the world. Choose from simply enjoying the festival atmosphere at one of the many pavement bars and restaurants or buy a ticket to one of the daily events held in the beautiful botanic gardens. 

30th Festival of A Violin on the Sand 

Royan

July 22, 25 & 28, 2017

www.violonsurlesable.com 

Classical and lyrical music festival with a symphonic orchestra comprising some 80 musicians from Paris Opera and other major orchestras. A Violin on the Sand is an invitation for kids and grownups alike to sit on the beach, facing the ocean with their heart amongst the stars, and to enjoy some of the most beautiful and unexpected classical music ever heard in such a location. 

Fête du Cognac 

Cognac

July 27-29, 2017

www.lafeteducognac.fr 

A celebration of the Charente area, the Fete du Cognac is a gastronomic event promoting cognac … and music. Over 22,000 plates of regional specialties were served last year and 55,000 glasses of cognac, pineau and various cocktails including the emblematic ‘Summit’. So feast during the day – there are five bars and 350 volunteers ready to serve you – and then enjoy some top line musicians performing in the evening. Stars such as The Stranglers are artists that have recently made an appearance.

 

Coup de Chauffe

Cognac

September, 2017

www.avantscene.com 

The 19th arts festival takes place annually in Cognac with thirty or so regional, national and European companies taking part to show more than 60 free shows – art in the streets. 

Les Gastronomades

Angoulême (Poitou-Charentes) 

November, 2017

www.gastronomades.fr

This unique annual event – a weekend dedicated entirely to regional food products and today’s cuisine – welcomes more than 100,000 visitors eager to learn about farm-to-table practices and interact with masters of the kitchen: chefs, caterers, producers and journalists. It’s an opportunity for everyone to learn about the culinary arts.

AUVERGNE – RHONE-ALPES

AUVERGNE

Andros Trophy

Super Besse

January 28, 2017

www.tropheeandros.com

The Andros Trophy (Trophée Andros) is the French national ice racing championship.

Sancy Snow Jazz Festival

Sancy

February 4-11, 2017

www.sancy-snowjazz.com

Annual Sancy Snow Jazz festival featuring all jazz styles.

39th International Short Film Festival

Clermont-Ferrand

February 3-11, 2017

www.clermont-filmfest.com 

Every year, more than 3,000 film professionals and enthusiasts converge on Clermont-Ferrand for the world’s largest short film festival. National, international and lab competitions present the best new groundbreaking films – animations, documentaries, comedies, fictions, genre films and even graduation shorts – complemented by a large number of retrospectives. Screenings are hosted throughout the city with concerts each evening.

The Rendez-vous aux Jardins Garden Festival

Drac

June 3-4, 2017

www.rendezvousauxjardins.fr

Organised by the Ministry of Culture and Communication, Rendez-vous aux Jardins is an original event designed with the aim of showing the public how important it is to protect green spaces in France. It takes place every year in the first weekend of June. For the occasion, over 2,000 public and private gardens are open to the public. Each new edition focuses on a theme relating to knowledge, protection, conservation and gardening: “the child in the garden”, “the stroll”, or “colours”. Around 2 million visitors enjoy around 1,300 guided tours as well as 215 exhibitions along with many conferences, readings, gardening workshops for adults and children, and skills demonstrations that take place in the participating gardens and green spaces.

Street Theater Festival of Aurillac – Festival d’Aurillac

Aurillac

August, 2017

www.aurillac.net 

Every year for four days, the Street Theatre Festival opens the whole town of Aurillac to street artists and some 100,000 spectators. Since its first instalment in 1986, the festival has always wanted to make way for all street artists who want to perform in Aurillac. Today, around 500 troupes from all over the world gather here to make Aurillac Street Theatre Festival an exceptional event of creativity, research and artistic dissemination. Hundreds of outdoor shows are organised during the day, and in the evening, a big party takes place to the sound of wild percussion sounds. Encounters between professionals and the public are an important part of this creative event.

RHONE-ALPES

La Foulée Blanche 

Autrans – Isère 

January 11-15, 2017

www.lafouleeblanche.com 

A competition of cross-country skiing: 4 days, 10 ski races, 7 different distances. It is the largest competition of Nordic skiing long distance in France. 

SIRHA

Lyon

21-25 January, 2017

www.sirha.com / www.bocusedor.com

Sirha is an event bubbling with inspiration and innovations. It features hundreds of new products and services, as well as exclusive dedicated stages that showcase the latest trends in the market, dozens of contests that demonstrate new techniques and ideas! The finals of the prestigious Bocuse d’Or and Coupe du Monde de Pâtisserie contests are the perfect illustration of this.

Sirha is a real drive for research and innovation, a source of ideas, a unique solution to answer the big question for today and tomorrow: what Food Service for a better life? Come and join us for a new Sirha experience!

Truffle Festival – Fête de la Truffe

Saint Paul Trois Châteaux

February 12, 2017

www.ladrometourisme.com 

Everything you want to know about truffles, complete with sales, a market, truffle hunts, and of course sensory and taste appreciation. 

Design Biennale

Saint-Etienne

9 March – 9 April 2017

http://www.citedudesign.com

The Biennale Internationale Design Saint-Étienne 2017 will present a state of the art and a great experiment, a giant laboratory, entitled Working Promesse focused on the shifting work paradigms

Venice-Style Carnaval – Carnaval Vénitien

Annecy

10-12 March, 2017

www.lac-annecy.com 

Annecy has been called the Alpine Venetia since a long time, with its canals crossing the historic town. This nickname takes its full sense during the 2 and half days of the Carnival. Several hundreds of masks roam slowly and freely in the streets of the Old Town, pose, parade and group together on the catwalks. No one knows who’s hiding behind these masks and these splendid and mysterious costumes that perfectly match with the colour of town’s walls.

15th Music Festival Nuits Sonores

Lyon

24-28 May, 2017

www.nuits-sonores.com 

Nuits Sonores has been known as one of the great European meetings in the realm of innovative music and creativity. Electronic music – techno, house, electronica – fills the streets, concert halls, passages, movie theaters, museums and other emblematic places of architectural heritage in Lyon 

Transhumance Festival – Fête de la Transhumance

Die

Mid-June, 2017

www.diois-tourisme.com

The long-standing tradition of transhumance – herding sheep through town and then up to summer mountain pastures – is slowly disappearing. Perhaps this festival of music, song, crafts and grilled food will breathe life back into the ancient pastoral practice.

Animated Movies Festival in Annecy

Annecy – Savoie Mont Blanc 

12-17 June, 2017

www.annecy.org 

This is the most important world festival dedicated to the Animated Movies. A major international event for over 9,000 industry professionals.

Nuits de Fourvière Festival 

Lyon

June-July, 2017

www.nuitsdefourviere.fr 

Since 1946, Les Nuits de Fourvière has been dedicated to the performing arts and endeavoured to let different art forms share the stage. Every summer, in June and July, the festival presents about 60 shows for an audience gathering over a hundred and thirty thousand people. If multidisciplinary is a criteria, it is not an absolute rule. The festival cherishes its opening and modernity by avoiding fixing set rules or themes. Les Nuits has built a unique artistic project whose sole reference is the artistic quality of the presented pieces and their importance on the international stage.

Jazz in Vienne 

Vienne – Isère 

June 29 to July 13, 2017

www.jazzavienne.com 

For a fortnight, concerts are organized at different locations in the town: at the Théâtre Antique in Vienne, the most prestigious stage with capacity for over 7,000 people; at the Jazz Mix, a spot for night owls and all the new jazz trends; at the Club de Minuit, an Italian-style theatre offering an international line-up; on the Cybèle stage, where regional artists mix; and not forgetting the Jazz Parade and the Caravan’Jazz, which travels around the communes near Vienne.

Musilac 

Aix les Bains – Savoie Mont Blanc 

July 13-15, 2017

www.musilac.com

For three days, the greatest French and international pop rock artists play alongside up-and-coming groups in an enchanting pastoral setting between the lake and the mountains. There are two stages, so concerts take place in quick succession. Musilac also aims to act as a springboard for the region’s young talents.

Lavender Festival – Fête de la Lavande

Ferrassières

July 2017

www.fete-lavande.com

The magical blue-purple flower is the special object of admiration during this annual festival in Ferrassières, the capital of fine lavender.

Annecy Lake Celebration

Annecy – Savoie Mont Blanc 

1st Saturday of August, 2017

 www.lac-annecy.com 

A pyrotechnic extravaganza on the Annecy Lake with fireworks and cruise ships enlightened. Born from the great “Venetian style” party of 1860 on the lake in honour of Napoleon III, this event has evolved and integrated all the new technologies of fireworks.”Grandiose”, magic, unique! About 200 000 spectators join lakesides to participate in this event.

Reblochon Festival – Fête du Reblochon

La Clusaz

Mid-August, 2017

www.laclusaz.com 

Artisans and farmers hold the place of honor amid parade floats, activities, bread-making and folk dances. A festival celebrating local craftsmanship, the history of local farming and of course the famous cheese, Reblochon.

Festival Berlioz 

La Côte Saint André – Isère

End of August, 2017

www.festivalberlioz.com 

It is a one of the rare Symphonic Music Festival in France. It takes place at La Côte-Saint-André, home town of the romantic composer Hector Berlioz. The Festival Berlioz’ national and international reputation makes it one of the biggest classical music appointments of the season.

Contemporary Art Biennial / Dance Biennial 

Lyon

September 20 to December 31, 2017

odd years for art and even years for dance 

www.biennale-de-lyon.org 

The Biennale d’Art Contemporain was started in 1991 by Thierry Raspail and Thierry Prat. It occurs only during odd years, alternating with the Biennale de la Danse. Artistic director Thierry Raspail has invited Emma Lavigne to co-curate this second episode of the Lyon Biennale with the keyword Moderne.

Festival of Italian Cinema 

Annecy – Savoie Mont Blanc

21-27 September, 2017

www.annecycinemaitalien.com 

The Annecy Festival is dedicated to Italian cinema.

Beaujolais Nouveau Festival – Les Sarmentelles de Beaujeu

Beaujeu

November 17, 2017

www.beaujolais.com 

The Beaujolais Nouveau festival not to be missed is Sarmentelles de Beaujeu, which hopes to become the international rendezvous for drinking this wine. Beaujolais Nouveau Day is marked in France on the third Thursday in November with fireworks, music and festivals. Under French law, the wine is released at 12:01 a.m., just weeks after the wine’s grapes have been harvested. Parties are held throughout the country and further afield to celebrate the first wine of the season.

PAYS DE LA LOIRE

The Bridge 2017

www.thebridge2017.com

Since the troops landed on French soil, there have been 100 years of cultural exchange with North America. The rise of jazz music and basketball are two wonderful illustrations of American influence. From the bridge of Saint-Nazaire to Verrazano-Narrows in New York, THE BRIDGE celebrates a century of friendship and brotherhood between France and The United States of America. The Bridge is an unprecedented challenge: celebrating the 100 years of friendship between France and The United States. It is a historical race against the clock between the Queen Mary 2 and a fleet of giant trimarans tracing of the American landing in 1917. The bridge will also showcase jazz and basketball.

BURGUNDY – FRANCHE COMTE

BURGUNDY

Donkey Festival – Fête de l’Âne

Sens

January, 2017 

www.obsidienne.fr

This festival, held every year in Sens, in January, is an evocation of the Office of the Feast of Fools, found in a manuscript from the 13th century, kept in the municipal library of Sens. Exhibitions, conferences, carriage rides, activities and workshops in the Museum of Sens, shows for everyone, concerts and theatre are among the activities on offer. An unusual appointment, not to be missed in the depths of winter!

Saint-Vincent Tournante 

Irancy

January, 2017 

www.st-vincent-tournante.fr 

Traditional festival of the patron saint of winegrowers, held the last weekend of January. Festivities, wine tastings and banquets in a different village every year.

Les Montgolfiades 

Chalon-sur-Saône

January 14-15, 2017

www.montgolfiades71.com 

This ballooning and wine festival brings together 50 balloons from all across Europe during the Pentecost weekend. Numerous activities include wine tastings, exhibitions, demonstrations, games, music, entertainment and, of course, hot air balloon flights. 

Art Danse Festival

Dijon

January 17 to February 1, 2017

www.art-danse.com 

Contemporary dance festival allowing for the discovery and meeting of the choreographers, dancers and professionals who keep the discipline vital. 

Chalon-sur-Saône Carnaval 

Chalon-sur-Saône

February 24 to Mars 5, 2017

www.carnavaldechalon.com 

Second only to Nice as the biggest carnival celebration! By the Saône River, laugh fully at the spectacle of giant cardboard heads. 

Fête du Crémant et du Tape Chaudrons 

Châtillon-sur-Seine

March 12, 2017

www.mairie-chatillon-sur-seine.fr 

Highly colorful festivities centered around bubbly wine.

Hospices de Nuits-Saint-Georges Wine Sale 

Nuits-Saint-Georges

Mars 24-26, 2017

www.ot-nuits-st-georges.fr 

Taking place on the last Sunday before Easter, and heralded by the half-marathon, the Nuits-Saint-Georges own annual charity wine auction: the Hospices de Nuits.

Theater in May – Théâtre en mai

Dijon

May 19-28, 2017

www.theatre-en-mai.com 

The town of Dijon has been welcoming Theatre in May for over twenty years: A festival dedicated to the exploration of the world and the questions it raises. Every year theatre-loving artists come together to amuse, to move and to intrigue the public. The performances given provide an astonishing insight into theatre today.

Gourmand Days – Journées gourmandes Bourgogne 

Saulieu

May 25, 2017

www.saulieu.fr 

Food fair uniting producers from the Morvan and the Burgundy region. 

25th Anniversary of Coupes Moto Légende 

Prenois

May, 2017
www.coupes-moto-legende.fr 

This is Europe’s largest motorcycle rally, a truly festive gathering. 

Francos gourmandes 

Tournus

June 12-13, 2017

www.francosgourmandes.fr 

A two-day festival of music and gastronomy. Les Francos Gourmandes invites headliner acts to perform on stage and in the kitchen, all in a friendly atmosphere by the Saône. Between concerts, visitors dine in the Allée des Chefs or taste local specialties in numerous popup wine bars.

Forgive the Sailors (Pardon des Mariniers)

Saint-Jean-de-Losne

June, 2017

www.saone-tourisme.fr 

On the banks of the Saône, Pardon des Mariniers keeps alive the traditional jobs that take place on the water. It’s a huge party for boaters and boatmen. 

Les Zaccros d’ma Rue 

Nevers

July 3-9, 2017

www.zaccros.org 

Circus troupes “invade” the streets of Nevers every summer. And with them they bring shows, concerts and performances, each one crazier than the next! More than 200 performances are on the program every year to the delight of all audience. 

Chalon in the Street – Chalon dans la Rue

Chalon-sur-Saône

19-23 July, 2017

www.chalondanslarue.com 

This popular and sought-after street-performance festival uses the city as its playground. Chalon-sur-Saône turns into a huge stage where thousands of spectators become both the actors and the performers. There’s theater, concerts, exhibition, poetry and humor for five days with over 1,000 artists who strut their stuff in front of 350,000 spectators. 

Festival International d’Opéra Baroque 

Beaune

July, 2017

www.festivalbeaune.com 

One of the top European festivals focused on Baroque music. Enjoyed in the most prestigious places of the wine capital of Burgundy. The major orchestral conductors and young virtuosos welcomed at Beaune take part in the broadcasting of baroque music throughout Europe. This event showcases the talents of tomorrow and is instrumental in spreading of compositions by Rameau, Bach, Lully and Handel etc beyond France.

History Show at the Château de Saint-Fargeau 

July, 2017

www.chateau-de-st-fargeau.com

 

In the exceptional setting of the castle and park, 15 paintings are staged using as many as 600 actors, like Joan of Arc’s epic, Héribert’s hunt, the French Revolution and American troops passing through Puisaye. All in all, the show covers more than 1,000 years of history. 

Festival Musical des Grands Crus de Bourgogne

Côte-d’Or, Saône-et-Loire and Yonne 

July-October, 2017

rwww.musicalgrandscrus-bourgogne.fr 

Combine music and wine – that’s what this festival is all about. Chablis, Noyers-sur-Serein, Meursault, Gevrey-Chambertin and Cluny are the scenes of around 50 concerts and 30 events focusing on wine. 

Maillotines Nights – Nuits Maillotines 

Joigny

July – August, 2017

www.joigny-tourisme.com 

In July and August, make a date for Fridays and/or Saturdays (depending on the schedule) for the Nuits Maillotines of Joigny. At nightfall, speakers, actors and musicians will bring you the biggest moments in history in the streets of the town. Every year a particular theme is chosen: In 2012, for example, it was ‘Women in the history of Joigny’. The shows have been extremely popular: Around 200 people every evening!

Hurdy Festival – Fête de la vielle 

Anost

August, 2017

www.ugmm.org 

Every year, in August, the Fête de la Vielle [Hurdy-gurdy Festival] at Anost is the unmissable rendezvous for traditional music enthusiasts. Over a four day period, the festival features a dozen concerts and dances to the sound of bagpipes, accordions, the hurdy-gurdy and many improvisation pieces in bars and restaurants. Thirty-five years ago, the first Fête de la Vielle brought together four hundred spectators. Now the event welcomes over 20,000 people hailing from all over the world!

30th Music Festival under the Vaults – Festival Musiques en voûtes

Dijon

September, 2017

www.quatuormanfred.com

 

This traveling festival offers chamber music concerts in exceptional Romanesque settings in the four Burgundian departments. 

Fantastic Picnic 

September, 2017

www.burgundy-tourism.com

 

At the same time as the Fête de la Gastronomie in the first weekend of autumn, “Fantastic Picnics” take place in unexpected places throughout the region. They’re the perfect opportunity to get together with friends and celebrate the gastronomic heritage of Burgundy. 

Press Festival – Fête de la Pressée

Chenôve

September, 2017

www.ville-chenove.fr 

This vineyard festival takes place every year on the third weekend of September in the old quarter of Chenôve. The grape presses of the Dukes of Burgundy come alive at this unforgettable time of celebration.

Les Automnales de Pommard 

October, 2017

www.beaune-tourisme.fr

This fun family wine festival is all about discovering the Pommard appellation. Festival activities include wine tastings, cellar visits and vineyard walks. 

International Gastronomy Fair – Foire Internationale et Gastronomique

Dijon

November 1 to 13, 2016 

www.foirededijon.com 

Attracting nearly 600 exhibitors and 200,000 visitors, the international and gastronomic fair of Dijon is the sixth-largest international fair in France and Burgundy’s most important economic event. Every year, one country is given the honor of hosting the event through its culinary specialties. A wine fair also showcases a foreign vineyard.

Hospices de Beaune Wine Sale 

Beaune

Third weekend of November, 2017 

www.beaune-tourisme.fr 

This most famous charity wine sale in the world has existed for more than 150 years. Every year, a celebrity lends a hand to help sell the best wines. This event includes many festivities: street shows, gala dinners and, of course, wine tasting, all in the bustling city. 

Truffle Market – Marché aux truffes

Noyers-sur-Serein

November, 2017

www.noyers-et-tourisme.com 

Fans of black gold meet together in one of the most beautiful village in France, located in the Yonne. Every autumn the famous Burgundy truffle market is held under the arcades at Noyers-sur-Serein, with stalls selling pottery and local produce in the town centre.

Les Glorieuses de Bresse 

Louhans

Mid-December, 2017

www.glorieusesdebresse.com 

The volaille de Bresse festival takes place in mid-December. Four dates in four Bresse cities, including a festive weekend in Louhans, culminate with the annual AOC poultry beauty contest. 

FRENCH ALPS 

La Grande Odyssée 

Savoie Mont Blanc 

January 7 – 18, 2017

www.grandeodyssee.com 

The largest sled dogs in the world will cross 22 ski resorts and villages from the North of Haute Savoie to the the South of Savoie 

26th Ice Sculpture Contest

Valloire – Savoie Mont Blanc 

January 10 to 13, 2017

www.valloire.net

24th Classicaval Music Festival 

Tignes

January 16-19 & March 6-9, 2017 

www.festival-classicaval.com 

A not-to-be-missed winter event, the two parts of the Classicaval music festival have attracted classical music lovers to the Baroque church of Saint-Bernard de Menthon for more than 20 years. Sharing the emotional gift of the musicians is the heart and soul of Classicaval.

International Festival of Pyrotechnic Art 

Courchevel

February – March 7, 2017

www.courchevel.com 

Looking ahead to its 13th year, the Festival International d’Art Pyrotechnique is a one-of-a-kind pyrotechnics competition between companies specializing in fireworks displays and keen to demonstrate their skills to more than 8,000 spectators. 

Rock the Pistes Festival 

Les Portes du Soleil

March 19-25, 2017 

www.rockthepistes.com 

This event, marking the start of the festival season, combines snow sports and music. There are free, open-air daytime concerts in a different Portes du Soleil resort each day, and your ski-pass is good as your ticket. Ski from venue to venue, between France and Switzerland and find the surprise festival stages erected over night. Many well-known artists have already graced the slopes: Ben l’Oncle Soul, Pete Doherty, BB Brunes, Klaxons, Bertignac, Superbus, Caravan Palace and Shaka Ponk.

 

Skicolor: Colorful Action on the Pistes 

Les Gets

11 March, 2017

www.skicolor.com 

Mont Chéry’s immaculate white slopes will be the setting for this vividly colorful new event – a first for a ski resort. Dressed in white, skiers will plunge down the piste through an explosion of color bursting from the 100% naturally colored powder snow shooting over them. The aim is to be the most colorful by the time you reach the bottom. In the evening there will be music with live DJs, all with Mont Blanc as a backdrop! 

Winter Golf 

Val d’Isère

March-April, 2017

www.valdisere.com

 

Golf on snow? You bet. This is the third Winter Golf Cup in the Manchet Valley, and it is a competition, events and courses open to everyone. Yes, when the Winter Golf comes to Val d’Isère, things really heat up in the village with street golf at nightfall. Then, at dawn, 40 teams of two players (Pro-Am) head out to the specially prepared nine-hole course in the Manchet Valley. 

The 26th Ice Sculpture contest will last 4 days and welcomes 20 sculptors. The last day a musical and light show will close the contest. The contest takes place two km from Valloire in the hamlet “Les Verneys”. The contest starts on Tuesday 10th and it finishes on friday 13th, at 3 pm.

From tuesday to friday, come and discover the artists at work, day and night.

Les 3 Vallées Enduro 

Val Thorens

April , 2017 

www.valthorens.com 

The leading 3 Vallées spring skiing event is about to start a new chapter. Over the past 10 years, it has become the biggest gathering of amateur skiers in the world. More than 1,500 participants every year earn points in teams of three by completing various challenges (big-air bag, speed skiing, freeriding, ski cross, freestyle, parallel slalom) in locations all around the ski area. Activities can be carried out on downhill or cross-country skis, as well as snowboards. 

2nd Slubli’cimes: 6 peaks, 6 parties 

La Plagne

April 5-18, 2017

www.la-plagne.com 

With a view to winning over new clients with an event on an original theme, La Plagne has come up with a thrill-filled operation. Subli’Cimes is an event created to enhance the ski area’s entertainment programme at the end of the winter season when conditions really lend themselves to relaxation: when the days are getting longer and the weather is warmer and sunnier. 

Unlimited Festival Jour Blanc 

Chamonix

April 6-9, 2017

www.chamonix.com 

A wave of electronic music will unfurl in the Chamonix valley. The festival will take music to greater heights, with concerts programmed up in the mountains for enthusiasts’ pleasure. Three day long festival incorporating the best electronic music in a breathtaking decor of the Mont-Blanc chain.

Spring Skiing Festival in Les Arcs – Peisey-Vallandry 

Les Arcs/Peisey-Vallandry

April, 2017

lesarcs.com Peisey-Vallandry

 

Fifteen days of out-of-this-world activities, challenges and shows take over the slopes of Les Arcs/Peisey-Vallandry. Highlights include a demonstration and introduction to slack-lining and Ride ‘n Golf; a beach party with a water slide for skiing or snowboarding across the pool; and, at the 10,584-foot summit of the Aiguille Rouge, Europe’s highest concert! 

Live in Tignes 

Tignes

3-6 April, 2017

www.tignes.net 

Tignes turn the music up in the resort and on the slopes by opening the music festivals season. LIVE IN TIGNES BY FRANCOFOLIES, 4 days of free concerts, with an electric programme. For the 2nd festival edition, a 3rd outdoor stage will be open and a 4th day of concert is programmed.

Feria Blanche Courchevel 

Courchevel

16 April, 2017 

www.courchevel.com

 

Celebrate the end of the Courchevel winter season with the Feria Blanche. Do some spring skiing in a festival atmosphere complete with live music, Easter egg hunts, clearance sales and opportunities to try out new products and materials. 

Apothéose Days 

Val Thorens

April 22–May 1, 2017

www.valthorens.com 

The unmissable end-of-ski-season party in France is a new snow-sports concept that alternates between morning spring skiing and afternoon entertainment, including activities to be enjoyed with family and friends. This fun international sports event adds enjoyment to the long spring days through a number of activities and a wide range of entertainment, such as a water slide, ski jumps, performances and street art. 

Alpine Skiing European Cup – Criterium de la Premiere Neige

Val d’Isère 

Mid-December, 2017 

www.valdisere.com

 

The legendary Critérium de la Première Neige (1st European World Cup stage of the season) offers the top skiers in the world a formidable place to perform.

Christmas, a Magical Week 

Courchevel

December 21 to 24, 2017 

www.courchevel.com

La Semaine Enchantée de Noël sees the magical transformation of the ski station of Courchevel. Free entertainment for the whole family includes a Christmas market, ski spectacles, enchanting theater for young and old alike, children’s workshops, fireworks and the arrival of Father Christmas. 

GUADELOUPE ISLANDS 

Gozieval

Gosier

January 27-29, 2017
A week end of parades, dancing, costumes, masquerades and street parties in the city of Gosier.

Shrove Tuesday 

Pointe-à-Pitre – Basse-Terre

February 28, 2017 

www.guadeloupe-islands.com

Shrove Sunday begins with parades, dancing, costumes, masquerades and street parties. Two days later, on Shrove Tuesday, pajama-clad masqueraders dance in the streets throughout the day and late into the night. This is Guadeloupe’s Carnival, but it is unique in that it finishes on Ash Wednesday. The biggest parades are held in Pointe-à-Pitre and Basse-Terre, but Carnival is celebrated in every town and village.

Crab Festival – Fête du Crabe 

Morne à l’eau

April, 2017 

www.maguadeloupe.ca

Crab-oriented events made the reputation of this annual crowd-pleasing festival. Crab races, biggest crab competitions, and crab-tying and crab-eating tournaments, as well as cooking competitions using crab-based recipes and discussions about crabs are all part of the festivities. The festival is also a time for great entertainment and cultural exchange. 

Karujet- Jet Ski world Championship

Petit bourg

April 1-9, 2017

World Jet Ski Championships in Petit-Bourg. Throughout the five stages, the public is present to do live the race spirit and the village atmosphere.

People come with your family, with friends to approach and support the racers. During this four days, Guadeloupe alive with this event of international scope.

Terre de Blues – Marie Galante Jazz Festival 

Marie-Galante

June 2-5, 2017 

www.terredeblues.com 

The 16th annual edition of this acclaimed four-day jazz festival will continue the tradition of bringing exceptional music to more than 15,000 people. In addition to the main stage and large food court on the festival grounds of the historical Murat Plantation, in town there’s a artisan’s exhibition and a central performance area open to amateurs giving free concerts. 

Gwo Ka Festival 

Sainte-Anne

July, 2017 

www.guadeloupe-islands.com 

Traditional annual drum festival, the term “gwoka” today describes the music, songs and dance steps using a Guadeloupean drum of the same name. Although once considered part of a subculture, gwoka has become an integral and unique part of Guadeloupean society, with the drum itself recognized as a special musical instrument and the drumming techniques and repertoire taught in music schools.

Tour de Guadeloupe Traditional Sailing Race (en Voile Traditionnelle)

Guadeloupe Islands 

July 8 – 16, 2017

www.tgvt.fr 

Sail around the Guadeloupe Islands on traditional sailboats. Enjoyed by thousands of aficionados over the course of more than 10 years, this annual sailing race is a keystone of Guadeloupean culture. During nine days, sailors make their way cross around the archipelago aboard their traditional boats and celebrate at each of eight stops. 

International Cycling Race – Tour de Guadeloupe

Guadeloupe Islands 

July 31- August 9, 2017 

www.guadeloupe-islands.com  

The Tour de Guadeloupe is an annual men’s multiple-stage road bicycle race. It is the country’s oldest and most popular sports event, as the entire nation joins in. Over the course of nine or 10 days, cyclists cover more than 750 miles and everyone celebrates their progress. 

Bubble Day Guadeloupe
Baie-Mahault, Jarry
December 3, 2017

The Bubble Day Guadeloupe is a 5km (3 miles) long race, where an activity is a waiting for you at each kilometer. After the race, the Bubble Festival will be held, featuring the best DJs of the Caribbean!

International Marathon of Guadeloupe
Le Moule
December 18, 2017

The International Marathon of Guadeloupe will take place on December 18th 2016, starting from Le Moule in the Land of Sugar Cane, passing by Anse Bertrand, and finishing at the Souffleur Beach in Port Louis.

Jou a Tradisyon 

Baie-Mahault

December 18,  2017

www.baiemahault.fr 

Held in at the Jarry Economic Activities Park in partnership with the Farmers Association of Baie-Mahault, this is an annual agricultural, artisanal, culinary and floral gathering. It is the island’s largest celebration of local products and economic and cultural heritage.

ILE-DE-FRANCE 

Les Arlequins – Fontainebleau Castle

Château de Fontainebleau

January, 2017

www.lesarlequins.fr 

Visitors are invited to dress up to discover the Fontainebleau Castle 

La maison du Roy

Fontainebleau, Ile-de-France 

April 19-20, 2017

www.chateaudefontainebleau.fr

Equestrian and musical show designed and animated by the Cavalry Regiment of the Republican Guard 

History of Art Festival

Fontainebleau

June, 2017

www.festivaldelhistoiredelart.com 

More than 300 free happenings – conferences, debates, roundtables, screenings, concerts, lectures, activities and more – are slated to take place as part of a commitment to help kids learn about the history of art in a fun way. 

Château de Versailles Musical Fountains Show 

Château de Versailles

April to October, 2017 

www.chateauversailles-spectacles.fr/en 

Discover the groves of Versailles, and the fountains whose jets of water rise and fall in time to the music. 

The Fountains Night Show 

Château de Versailles

Mid-June to Mid-September 2017

www.chateauversailles-spectacles.fr/en 

When night falls, the palace gardens transform into a stunning visual and musical treat. This year once again, lighting and stage-effects artists will illuminate the gardens and display their surprising installations to visitors: water features in the Mirror Fountain, lasers streaking across the dark in the Colonnade Grove and a fireworks display in front of the Grand Canal. Musical Season at the Royal Opera of Château de Versailles: To consult the entire musical season:  Musical Shows: TBD

Vaux le Vicomte Easter Celebration 

Château de Vaux le Vicomte

April 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 17, 2017

www.vaux-le-vicomte.com/en 

A large Easter egg hunt will be organized in the gardens. With the support of Leonidas, more than 50,000 eggs (or 3 tons of chocolate!) will be hidden throughout the gardens.

Candlelit Evenings at Vaux le Vicomte 

Château de Vaux le Vicomte

Every Saturday evening from 6 May to 7 October 

www.vaux-le-vicomte.com/en

Vaux le Vicomte can be visited under the glow of 2,000 lit candles. To accompany this festival of light, classical music is played, evoking a night of festivities that dates back to 1661. Every Saturday evening from May 6 to October 7 , 2017, visitors may experience the 17th century château and its Jardins à la française. An enchanting and romantic evening that will give visitors a new perspective on the estate.

Saint Denis Festival 

Basilique-Cathédrale Saint-Denis

13 June, 2017

www.festival-saint-denis.com 

Created in 1970, Saint-Denis Festival presents a series of symphonic classical music concerts and recitals in the town of Saint-Denis. Every year in June, it takes over the basilica of Saint-Denis and the House of Education of the Legion of Honour, two exceptional examples of Saint-Denis’ architectural heritage.

La Nuit aux Invalides 

Hôtel national des Invalides

June– August, 2017

www.lanuitauxinvalides.fr 

From the banks of the Seine to the frilly shimmering of the Belle Epoque, from the din of the First World War to the cannonade saluting the death of the king, the new edition of La Nuit aux Invalides will be bringing you 2000 years of the history of France and its capital in a magical parade in the courtyard.

Provins Christmas Festival 

Provins

December, 2017

www.provins.net 

In December, this World Heritage-listed city comes to life with a vibrant Medieval market, day and night, on the plaza before the castle; a living crèche with 50 actors; an underground storytelling theater; an artisanal village market with a large ice-skating rink; a steam train; as well as a dance spectacle, concerts, illustrators and much more. 

PARIS 

Paris International Agriculture Show

Paris Expo Porte de Versailles

February 25 to March 3, 2017

www.en.salon-agriculture.com

For the last half a century, the Paris International Agricultural Show has been the annual meeting place for all the key players of the agricultural world. It is the leading event of the sector, not only in France but all around the world. Breeders, local farmers, regions, professional organizations and agricultural professional syndicates, different ministries, research institutes: everybody contributes to present all the aspects of the sector and the perspectives of the evolution. The Show is organized around 4 sectors: livestock breeding sectors, products and gastronomy, Crops, plants, nature and lifestyle, agricultural services and professions.

Art Paris Art Fair

Paris

March 30 to April 2, 2017

www.artparis.com

Held form 30th March to 2nd April 2017, Art Paris Art Fair is a springtime art fair focusing on discovery. Art Paris Art Fair brings together 140 galleries from some 20 countries at the Grand Palais to explore European art from the post war period to the present day as well as international emerging art scenes.

European Arts and Crafts Days

March 31 to April 2, 2017

www.craftscouncil.org.uk

Organized by the French National Institute for Arts and Crafts, European Artistic Craft Days are a chance for people to see skilled craft makers in action and perhaps even have a go themselves. Taking place across Europe on the first weekend in April – visitors can discover more about craft through open-door days at studios and training events or through special events and themed tours. European Artistic Craft Days have been running for over a decade in France and now they are expanding with 18 countries taking part. The theme for this year is “Let’s Shape the Future” in order to show how craft can improve the future of our societies through entrepreneurship, creativity, collaborative working.

European Museum Night

May, 2017

www.nuitdesmusees.fr

There is something unique about a museum at night, and only one night to experience it. The City of Paris’ contribution to this France-wide event includes the Musée d’Art Moderne, Musée Bourdelle, Victor Hugo’s house, the glass-roofed Petit Palais and countless other cultural attractions. These singular venues run a variety of events, and provide their own brand of stuff-dreams-are-made experiences.

Taste of Paris

May 18-21, 2017

www.paris.tastefestivals.com

After being created in London in 2004, Taste Festivals is back in Paris. It is more than fitting that such an event will bring together some of the best chefs the ‘City of Light’, There will be pop-up restaurants who will create mini-bite sized signature dishes in tasting format. For lunch or dinner, you will be able to sample the best French high cuisine ranging from chefs with Michelin stars to young and emerging talent, from classics to new clever creations …A true Festival of Parisian chefs! At Taste of Paris there will also be seminars, demonstrations, cooking classes, an array of artisans and brands linked to the world of gastronomy that will showcase their creations. All of this will create a warm ambience perfect for mingling, sharing, discovery, creativity, exchange and relaxation.

Fête de la musique

June 21, 2017

www.fetedelamusique.fr

For the last 35 years in France, the 21st June is not just the longest day of the year but also the day of the fête de la musique. This “festival of music” is no ordinary festival. Music takes over the city’s streets, with live bands, singers, amateur musicians, drummers, DJs and so on scattered throughout the city, expressing themselves through music and inviting the crowd to enjoy themselves.

Gay Pride Parade

June 24, 2017

www.gaypride.fr

More than just a carnival-like festival, it’s also served as an important platform for supporting full civil rights for LGBT people, in France and around the world.

Paris Jazz Festival

June – July 2017

www.en.parisjazzfestival.fr

The Paris Jazz Festival is a relaxing summer event on the east side of the city, taking place at the Parc Floral de Vincennes. One of a series of festivals that take place during the yearly festival season, this location that once was a royal hunting area is known for its greenhouses, enchanting flower beds and an expansive bandstand where musicians perform. The festival spans over a month, with each weekend featuring a different concert and with an overall focus on jazz.

Paris Jazz Festival 

Paris Early

June, 2017

www.parisjazzfestival.fr 

Paris’ premier jazz festival unfolds over the course of eight weeks in the Parc Floral botanical gardens of Paris. Having celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2014, it has been instrumental in helping jazz to keep reinventing itself rather than settling into a routine. 

Solidays Music Festival

End June, 2017

www.solidays.org

Every year, the music festival Solidays welcomes around 200,000 people who come to enjoy the concerts, entertainment and activities. But this event is also about solidarity – hence the name – in the fight against Aids, the virus which still affects millions around the world. Although the epidemic has stabilised in Western countries, Africa is still very much in the grip of this virus. The festival was set up so that some of the profits would go towards charities helping with this disease, promoting prevention and helping those affected. Each year, the festival invites major international stars to perform on stage for free or for a much reduced fee.

Bastille Day in Paris

July 14, 2017

The French national holiday on July 14th is a huge celebratory event in Paris. From morning to night, a raft of exceptional events make this anniversary an especially festive one. With a military parade, evenings with dancing, and a fireworks display, there is something for all tastes and ages. A quality program full of varied events not to be missed!

Open Air Cinema

La Villette

End July – end August, 2017

Relax on the green lawns of the Parc de la Villette, in the 19th district in the north east of Paris; as dusk falls the screenings begin at the Open Air Cinema Festival (Cinéma en plein air). A cultural highlight every summer with a different theme each time, the festival welcomes thousands of film fans with a programme of French and international films, both new releases and cult films of the past. Lesser known films and short films are also screened. Special events and activities are open to all. Entry to the screenings at the Open Air Film Festival is free of charge for all. You can hire deckchairs and blankets on site for a more comfortable screening, and audiences are invited to bring a picnic and enjoy it before the screening begins. All films are shown in their original language, foreign films are shown with French subtitles.

Paris Plages 

Paris 

Mid-July to mid-August, 2017

www.paris.fr 

A Seine-side holiday. That, in a nutshell, is what Paris Plages is all about. The Seine’s banks become pedestrian byways and sandy beaches are spread across three spots – Louvre/Pont de Sully, Port de la Gare and Bassin de la Villette – complete with deck chairs, ice cream sellers and concerts for French and foreign guests. Holidaymakers at the Bassin de la Villette can also borrow books free of charge, play beach volleyball, take an aqua-gym class in a mini pool, kayak around the lake or, of course, just chill and enjoy. 

Rock en Seine

Paris

August, 2017

www.rockenseine.com 

Rock en Seine is a multi-genre music festival in Paris, France. Celebrating its 15th birthday this summer, the festival is now one of the biggest and most loved in Europe.

Musicians from all walks grace the stages of the French capital’s Parc de Saint-Cloud over the course of the weekend, from rock megastars and indie icons to DJs, rappers, pop-stars and more.

Paris Electronic Week 

Paris 

Mid-September, 2017 

www.pariselectronicweek.fr

 

This 10-day festival celebrates electronic music and culture through performances and workshops. Paris Electronic Week is organized by Technopol – Techno Parade, an association that, since 1996, has assisted in the development and promotion of electronic music and culture, as well as its adherents’ networking and professionalism. 

Classique au Vert

August to mid-September, 2017

www.classiqueauvert.paris.fr

For 7 weekends, between the Paris Jazz Festival and the Pestacles festival, classical music takes over the magnificent setting of the Parc Floral in full bloom. At a crossroads between arts, styles, eras and cultures, the shows programmed as part of the festival are cutting edge enough for real connoisseurs, but they are also fun, original, subtle and amazing, drawing in a wide audience. The general public come to discover and share the joy of classical music. At the open air stages, it’s a festival of wonder and enjoyment, as people gather to enjoy concerts that encompass a large panorama of current musical practices. The Parc Floral, with its beautiful bonsais, iris, dahlias, not to mention the sculptures and ceramic works, is an ideal setting for such an eclectic and open-minded festival.

Paris Design Week

September, 2017

www.maison-objet.com

PARIS DESIGN WEEK is fast becoming the definitve cultural counterpoint that is raising the bar for design weeks across the world. Overlapping the M&O PARIS September show and uniting the French and an increasingly international design community, the PDW city becomes immersed in promenades, cocktails, exhibitions… culminating into the celebration of emerging talents at NOW! LE OFF.

Techno Parade

Mid- September, 2017

www.technoparade.fr

Since it was founded by Jack Lang in 1998, the Technoparade in Paris has aimed to promote and celebrate electronic music culture. For one day, this great gathering of music-lovers (over 350 000 festival-goers attend each year) is centred on a great parade through the streets of Paris. Around 10 floats make their way slowly along the parade route, some representing a radio station, others a music label or collective, and all are pumping out electronic music mixed by DJs on the floats.

Montmartre Wine Harvest Festival

Paris

October, 2017

www.fetedesvendangesdemontmartre.com

A contemporary arts festival celebrating the Montmartre wine harvest. Across the five-day festival program, you can expect all manner of wine-themed events, including talks, plenty of music, plus exhibitions and workshops where kids and teenagers can apparently learn all about street art.

Nuit Blanche 

Paris 

October 1, 2017

www.quefaire.paris.fr 

Nuit Blanche, a free, annual, dusk-to-dawn carnival of arts and culture, has become one of the most popular events on the Paris cultural calendar. It is an informal and relaxed way for the general public to become acquainted with contemporary artists in many settings – outdoors, in famous places in Paris, with children or friends, or just after eating in a restaurant. The success of this event, started in Paris in 2002, has led to its adoption in other cities like Rome, Brussels, Madrid and Montreal.

OCCITANIE – Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées

LANGUEDOC – ROUSSILLON

The Great Roman Games – Les Grands Jeux Romains

Nimes

April 2017

www.grandsjeuxromains.com 

Staged combat, shows, field camps, theme visits, displays, conferences and more bring to life this annual historical reenactment of life in Roman times. More than 500 participants will participate in military parades through the city, as well as gladiator battles and circus games in the arenas. In the arenas there is a historic reconstruction and a unique show with 500 participants from around Europe, workshops for children and image projections. In the town centre there are processions in the streets and shows and entertainment at the Maison Carrée and the Archaeological Museum. This is Roman Antiquity as you have never seen it before!

Mondial du Vent

Leucate-La Franqui

April 11-17, 2017

www.mondialduvent.fr

With sublime locations between the Mediterranean and lakes, and 300 days of the tramontane wind per year, Leucate-La Franqui is the dream location for every lover of wind-driven sports. It is also the ideal place to organise the Mondial du Vent, an international competition which, every year in April, brings together the kitesurfing and windsurfing elite. The Mondial du Vent is more than a week of powerful sensations with the International Speed Challenge, speed runs between Kitesurfers and windsurfers, the International Freestyle § Bigair, The Kite Business and the Stand Up Paddle Days. On the beach, the Village de la Glisse offers activities and entertainments, tasters and demonstrations (windsurfing, sky fly, stand up paddle) as well as an exhibition to find out about all the new products.

Fairies of the Pont du Gard

Pont du Gard

June, 2017

www.pontdugard.fr

For four evenings in June, in the exceptional setting of the Pont du Gard, a UNESCO World Heritage for Humanity Site, the famous firework artists of Groupe F put on Fééries du Pont (Fairies of the Bridge), a son-et-lumière and pyrotechnics show of breath-taking beauty. The magnificence of the Roman monument is enhanced by these artists, who have illuminated the most symbolic places on the planet from the Eiffel Tower to the Château of Versailles and from Sydney Harbour to the highest tower in the world in Dubai.

Festival de Carcassonne

Carcassonne

July, 2017

www.festivaldecarcassonne.fr

The Carcassonne Festival is the unmissable event of the summer and in july puts on almost one hundred concerts and shows, including French and international variety shows, theatre, circus, dance, jazz, opera and classical, 80 of which are free, in prestigious venues around the city. Arctic Monkeys, Diana Ross, Supertramp, José Carreras, Moby, Bob Dylan, Gossip, Paolo Conte, David Guetta and many others have been attracted by the exceptional site of the City of Carcassonne and by the warmth of the public.

Sète Worldwide Festival

Sète

July 3-9, 2017

www.worldwidefestival.com

Since 2006, early July in Sète has been marked by the Worldwide Festival, the unmissable meeting-place for fans of electronic music. The London DJ Gilles Peterson (Artistic Director) and the entire festival team prepare an exceptional event every year, with ever more music and open air concerts. Sud de France is a proud partner of the Worldwide Festival who attracted more than 50,000 festival-goers last year (44% from the UK). Festival-goers will be able to enjoy the Sud de France art de vivre. While basking in the festival’s music and the Mediterranean sunshine, they will be able to taste local sud de France food and wine. Oysters from lovely village of Bouzigues, spicy Longanisses Catalan sausages, cheese from the Cévennes uplands etc. will be served in the festival’s food stands which will be dressed in the bright Sud de France colours.

Medieval Festival of Saint Louis – Les Fêtes de la St Louis

Aigues-Mortes

August, 2017 

www.ot-aiguesmortes.fr 

At the end of August, the town of Aigues Mortes holds a large mediaeval festival to celebrate Saint Louis, King of France and the town’s founder. Over a weekend, the town revives its Middle Age past with a number of shows and activities in the streets, including historic processions, knights’ camps, a market and mediaeval ball, a tavern, musicians, street theatre and acrobats. A fireworks display and the illumination of the ramparts conclude the festivities.

Saint-Louis Festival in Sète

Sète

August 2017

www.tourisme-sete.com

Saint-Louis is a traditional festival to the glory of King Louis XIV, founder of the town of Sète, and the Languedoc nautical jousts and brings together tens of thousands of enthusiasts every year. During six days around 25 August, the feast day of Saint Louis, jousting tournaments on the Cadre Royal, entertainment, concerts, exhibitions and processions and the Sète swimming race punctuate the festivities, which culminate with the great firework display launched from the breakwater.

Festival of photojournalism – Visa pour l’Image

Perpignan

September 2-17, 2017

www.visapourlimage.com

A rendezvous for photography-lovers, Visa pour l’Image is the largest international festival of photojournalism; every September it brings thousands of visitors together in Perpignan around a shared passion. Visa pour l’Image consists of more than twenty free exhibitions throughout the town, inviting the public to discover striking reports produced by photojournalists from around the world. It also involves open-air film evenings in the sumptuous mediaeval setting of the Cloister of Campo Santo, meetings with photographers, rendezvous at the stands of agencies and leading photographic technology brands.

Gastronomic Tours in the AOC Languedoc

AOC Languedoc

May, June, and July 2017

www.coteaux-languedoc.com

From May to July, four gourmet trips are offered to the public to discover the different local “terroirs” of the AOC Languedoc. These tours are punctuated with tasting stops that combine wines, heritage and gastronomy.

Fise World Montpellier

May 24-28, 2017

www.fise.fr

The FISE World Montpellier – International Extreme Sports Festival – is the largest annual freestyle sports competition in Europe!Over 500,000 fans of board sports and intense sensations meet every year during Ascension weekend to see the best French and international riders on the banks of the Lez in the centre of Montpellier. With rollerblading, skating, BMX, mountain biking and wakeboarding, the FISE World Montpellier offers five days of introductions for everyone (stand up paddle, surfing, bodyboarding, etc.) and a large board sports village where you can find equipment and street-wear. Big-name DJs take turns at the turntables, guaranteeing an electric atmosphere.

MIDI-PYRENEES 

Poney Session, Premier Snowboard Freestyle Event 

Saint Lary

March, 2017

www.poneysession.com

 

Poney Session, now a five-star event on the World Snowboard Tour (WST), has become the largest snowboard gathering in France, one of the leading match-ups in Europe and also part of the Snowboard World Cup. 

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2017

Lourdes

29-30 April, 2017

www.tourism-midi-pyrenees.co.uk 

The International Cycling Union (UCI) Mountain Bike World Cup launched its 2016 calendar with a downhill event on the Pic du Jer overlooking Lourdes. Although new to the World Cup, Lourdes has already hosted the French Cup and will present riders with a 1.5-mile-long course that descends 2,000 feet in altitude. The race will be broadcast live and followed by a worldwide internet audience of 2 million. 

Transhumance Festival

Aubrac

May 28, 2017

www.aubrac-sud-lozere.com

For the feast of Saint Urbain, the herds of sheep move up to the Aubrac plateau from the surrounding valleys and spend all summer in the green pasture areas, before moving back down in October for the feast of Saint Géraud. Since 1993, this ancient tradition of transhumance has been a great colourful, lively and popular festival which takes place on the Sunday closest to 25 May at Col de Bonnecombe in Lozère. A number of events take place to accompany the movement of the decorated herds, with a meal which includes the compulsory aligot (mashed potato with cheese and garlic).

Course Eiffage 

On the Viaduc Millau

May, 2017

www.course-eiffage-viaducdemillau.org 

For its fourth running, the Course Eiffage du Viaduc de Millau brings together all running enthusiasts, whether they are competitive runners or simply running for their own pleasure and wellbeing. The race is popular and accessible, attracting amateur enthusiasts cheered on by their families.

Rio Loco Celebrates 22 Years 

Toulouse

15-18 June, 2017

www.rio-loco.org 

This is the Toulouse’s largest music festival, now in its 22nd year. The theme is the Indian Ocean’s islands.

Lights Music Festival

Abbaye Ecole de Sorèze

July 4 – 10, 2017

www.abbayeecoledesoreze.com 

The “Musiques Festival des Lumières” festival in July -Opera, various style of music, baroque and contemporary, all find a place in the chapel, the “Salle des Illustres”, and the Abbey church or outdoor in the red courtyard.

Cahors Blues Festival 

Cahors

July, 2017 

www.cahorsbluesfestival.com 

The Cahors Blues Festival, founded in 1982, is the oldest blues festival in France. Known throughout Europe, this July festival has attracted several thousand people to each of its evening main stage concerts. It has revealed to the public many artists little known or unknown thanks to its talent competition, and pursues its quest for cultural promotion and development of Delta Blues and Blues music in general.

Medieval Festival of the Grand Falconer 

Cordes-sur-Ciel

July, 2017

www.grandfauconnier.com 

Taking place in the beautiful perched village of Cordes-sur-Ciel, visitors step back in time to the Middle Ages and are entertained by troubadors, jugglers, falconers and other relics of the village’s medieval past. 

Festival Piano Pic 

July, 2017

Bagnères-de-Bigorre

www.piano-pic.com

 

Piano Concerts on the summit of Pic du Midi 

Gavarnie Festival

Gavarnie

July, 2017 

www.festival-gavarnie.com

 

This remarkable open-air theater festival, held right at the gates of Pyrenees National Park, marks its 31st year in 2016. The Festival de Gavarnie is set in the Cirque de Gavarnie, part of the Pyrenees-Mont Perdu area that is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

40th Festival Jazz in Marciac 

Marciac

July – August, 2017

www.jazzinmarciac.com 

Marciac, a 13th century medieval village nestling in the undulating Gascony countryside, has an unspoilt feel and lively character and is an instant hit with visitors, making it the natural home of one of the world’s biggest annual jazz festivals. In 2017, Jazz in Marciac will celebrate its 40th anniversary, and the 2017 edition promises an extraordinary programming. The festival attracts a great deal of attention every summer from late July to mid-August, when some 250,000 visitors flock here to enjoy the surprising fact that they can mingle with the artists.

Saint-Céré Lyric Festival – Opéra – théâtre

Saint Céré – The Dordogne Valley,

July – August, 2017 

www.festival-saint-cere.com 

Every summer, Saint-Céré Festival welcomes over 150 artists for a month, for four alternating lyric shows, two new creations and 40 events throughout the Lot department for 3 weeks. Saint-Céré Festival is a springboard for young singers, a place of experience and risk-taking in the field of opera music, and a vast forum with a large, mainstream audience.

20th anniversary of the Cité de l’Espace

Toulouse

2017

The Cité de l’espace in Toulouse will celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2017 and on that occasion this space themed tourist attraction organises two big events: the new Astronauts exhibition and The 30th Planetary Congress of the Association of Space Explorers.

Piano aux Jacobins 

Toulouse

September, 2017

 www.pianojacobins.com 

The first festival in France entirely dedicated to piano performances, this event is a highlight of the city’s festive autumn calendar. 

 

Actual Circus CIRCA Festival 

Aunch

October 15 to 25, 2016

www.festival-circa.auch.fr 

Festival Toulouse les Orgues

Toulouse

October 2017 

www.toulouse-les-orgues.org 

The Festival will celebrate the dialogue of cultures and the 20th anniversary of Toulouse les Orgues adventure. Concerts in the morning, in the afternoon and in the evening, a round table, a day out in region, an exhibition… The Festival will feature a rich program: 35 events for all the music lovers. Have a look at the main events !

MARTINIQUE 

Martinique Cata Raid 

January 22 -28, 2017

www.martiniquecataraid.com

This sports catamaran regatta of 45 vessels circles the island in five stages

Martinique Caribbean Carnival 

Fort-de-France

Februry 25 to March 1, 2017 

www.martinique.org 

During the carnival the daily life of Martinique comes to a stand still and the island comes alive with “Carnival Fever”. Preparations start months in advance. During the five days of official celebration many of the younger generations don’t sleep, parading by day and partying by night.

Nautical Week

Schoelcher

February, 2017

www.martinique.org 

Participants from the Caribbean, Europe and North America are present for this international sailing competition, pitting themselves against sailors from Martinique in a variety of disciplines. 

Festival Martizik 

Sainte-Anne

March, 2017

www.martizik.com 

This festival of electronic and tropical music is the first eco-conscious festival in the Caribbean. 

Gastronomy Week

Sainte-Marie

May, 2017

www.martinique.org 

Creole cuisine takes center stage during this week showcasing the best chefs of Martinique and elsewhere. 

Martinique Yole Festival 

May, 2017

www.martinique.org 

A festival celebrating the yole ronde, the traditional boat of Martinique, through yole ronde races, concerts, a crafts village and activities. 

Cultural Festival

Fort-de-France

July, 2017

www.martinique.org 

Every year there are favorite and unforgettable moments at this festival of world culture. 

Le Tour de Martinique des Yoles Rondes 

End of July to beginning of August, 2017

www.yoles-rondes.net

The most popular event in Martinique is this colorful weeklong water festival. More than 600 racers train with their yoles rondes, watched by pleasure boaters and thousands of passionate supporters. 

Rum Festival

Sainte-Marie

December, 2017

www.martinique.org 

In the gardens of the St James distillery, look for a craft village, rides on board the plantation train, concerts, group walks and Christmas carols. 

HAUTS-DE-FRANCE

NORD-PAS DE CALAIS 

Lille Flea Market

September, 2017

www.braderie-de-lille.fr 

The Lille Flea Market is the largest and most famous flea market in Europe. Every year, more than two million visitors from all over the continent (and beyond) take to the streets of the city in search of bargains. Many events also take place throughout the weekend, not the least of which are focused on gastronomy.

NORMANDY 

Scallop Festivals 

Port-en-Bessin-Huppain & Grandcamp-Maisy

November, 2017 

www.bayeux-bessin-tourisme.com 

Lower Normandy is a maritime region par excellence, where the scallop represents the main fishing product. Every year, in le Bessin, two fishing villages celebrate the start of scallop harvesting with festivals: “Le Goût du Large” in November in Port-en-Bessin-Huppain (north of Bayeux) and “La Coquille Saint-Jacques en Fête” in December in Grandcamp-Maisy (east of the Baie des Veys). Food tasting, cooking demonstrations, fish auctions, a book fair, concerts and guided tours are all on the program.

 

Medieval Normandy 

June to September 2017

www.bayeux-bessin-tourisme.com 

Steeped in our common history, Normandy invites you to go back in time to retrace the footsteps of William the Conqueror, Richard the Lionheart and Joan of Arc. Explore the rich medieval history of Normandy’s architectural heritage with its châteaux, abbeys and museums. From June to September 2016, many festive medieval events will take place in Normandy, home of William the Conqueror. In July, the streets of Bayeux will come alive with street theatre during the medieval festival and in August, Dives-sur-Mer will celebrate the 950th anniversary of William the Conqueror’s sailing to England prior to his victory at Hastings. 

PROVENCE-ALPS-COTE D’AZUR 

Feria d’Arles 

April, 2017 

www.feriaarles.com 

This feria returns year after year to mark the beginning of the bull-fighting temporada (season) in France. Thousands of fans flock here to celebrate this tradition, with the old town being entirely pedestrianised and orchestras flooding the streets. In addition to the corridas, the feria is synonymous with exhibitions, events and activities and even conferences. 

The luminescence d’Avignon 

Avignon

August – October, 2017

www.avignon-tourisme.com 

Sound and light display designed by Bruno Seillier. A 35-minute staged show that restores the castle to its medieval glory, when Christianity had reached its apex. The Cour d’Honneur at the Palais des Papes is drenched in light, plunging spectators into the midst of over-sized high-resolution images and 3D sequences. A heady journey through time. New: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, the 10:15pm session is in English. 

RIVIERA 

Nice Carnaval 

Nice

February 11-26, 2017

www.nicecarnaval.com

The main winter event on the Riviera is one of the largest carnivals in the world. The carnival processions, comprising 16 floats work their way up to a crescendo of gigantic celebrations on the Place Masséna. These giant, colorful parades take place day and night, with entertainment provided by over 1,000 musicians and dancers from across the world. In a unique setting, on the Promenade des Anglais, the elegant “flower battles” are part of the carnival not to be missed. On floats decorated with the most stunning floral compositions, extravagantly dressed characters throw out mimosas, gerberas, and lilies into the public. The Carnival “King of Energy” will show his fans that he has many resources!

83rd Lemon Festival – Fête du Citron

Menton

February 11 – March 1, 2017

www.feteducitron.com 

The Biovès Gardens play host to giant displays composed of citrus fruits. Parades of giant-headed figurines decorated with golden fruit ride on floats covered in oranges and lemons. These are just a couple of the festival’s highlights. Don’t miss the International Orchid Festival (Festival International d’Orchidées) and the Menton Country Crafts Show (Salon de l’Artisanat du Pays Mentonnais). 

Mimosa Festival

Mandelieu – La Napoule

February 15-22, 2017 

www.ot-mandelieu.fr 

The mimosa, symbol of Mandelieu, adorns just about everything during this festival’s afternoon and evening parades and musical spectacles. Mandelieu is one stop along the 80-mile Route du Mimosa, which provides an excellent reason to discover the Côte d’Azur in winter. 

33nd Springtime Arts Festival

Monaco

March 17 – April 8, 2017

www.printempsdesarts.com 

This festival features a selection of musical events, as well as theater, film, visual arts and dance happenings.

Cannes Shopping Festival 

Cannes

March, 2017

www.cannesshoppingfestival.com 

Cannes keeps to the beat of major French and foreign brands’ fashion shows. Many events are also organized around the theme of fashion. 

10th Antibes Yacht Show

Antibes

April, 2017

www.antibesyachtshow.com 

This luxury exhibition set in Europe’s leading marina showcases nearly 120 boats, both new and used, as well as all of the services and products related to yachting. 

45th Antibes Art Fair, Antiques Show 

Antibes Juan-les-Pins

April 15 – May 2, 2017

www.salon-antiquaires-antibes.com

This major meeting of antique collectors, enthusiasts and bargain hunters is the most anticipated one of the year, organized by exhibitors coming from all over Europe. 

70h Cannes Festival 

Cannes

May 17 to 28, 2017 

www.festival-cannes.com 

The most important film event in the world. Every year, the biggest international stars climb the steps of the world-famous Cannes Palais to share their films with critics and industry professionals. The Festival de Cannes is second only to the Olympics as the most publicized event in the world. 

75th Grand Prix of Monaco 

Monaco May 25-28, 2017

www.grand-prix-monaco.com 

One of the oldest and most prestigious car races along a city circuit, first conceived in 1929. 

12th Stars of Mougins – Les Etoiles de Mougins

Mougins

September

www.lesetoilesdemougins.com 

Mougins is transformed every year by this food and lifestyle festival. Sensory, culinary and wine workshops, as well as cooking demonstrations are all part of the initiation process. Mediterranean Flavors and Food Show (Salon des Saveurs et Terroirs en Méditerranée) 

Mandelieu

November

www.ot-mandelieu.fr 

Festive food products, gastronomy, and culinary and wine activities are on the program of this three-day show at the Centre Expo Congrès. 

Nice-Cannes Maritime Alps Marathon 

Nice to Cannes

November, 2017

 www.marathon06.com

The Marathon des Alpes-Maritimes Nice-Cannes is the flagship sports event of the Maritime Alps. The 26.2 miles of coastal course overlook the sea’s blue waters from Nice to Cannes.

The Côte d’Azur Garden Festival

Alpes-Maritimes

April – May, 2017

www.cotedazur-tourisme.com

The Côte d’Azur’s gardens have played a crucial role in promoting the region as a tourism destination and now form a key component of its botanical heritage. Once an aristocratic playground in the 19th century, winter holiday-makers with a passion for plants were at their leisure to acclimatize an array of species brought back from their travels, thus allowing them to create a series of extraordinary gardens: Botanical gardens, acclimatization gardens, fragrant plant conservatories and pleasure gardens, whether on the coast or in the mountains, with some certified “Remarkable Gardens”.