Celebrated on July, 14, Bastille Day is the French national day and the most important bank holiday in France! Setting the storming of the Bastille in 1789 as an essential part of the French History. The 14th July has become a major public holiday, traditionally considered as the symbol of the French Revolution.
The French Bastille Day is definitely a joyous national day that causes popular celebrations in the streets as well as political events. The best way to experience the 14 July bank holiday – widely known as Le 14 Juillet – is to go to Paris, more precisely on the Champs Elysees. Expect military parades, public speeches and fireworks, but also convivial gatherings in all cafés and restaurants!
Every single town in France actually commemorates the Bastille Day with excitement and pride as this national day represents the first step to the French Revolution which eventually led France to Republic. On July, 14, patriotic feelings break out throughout the country, French people wear blue, white and red, “tricolore” clothes or make-up and sing the typical Marseillaise (the French anthem) after one – or more! – glasses of Champagne!
Bastille Day in Paris…
Beginning in the morning of the 14th July, on the Champs Elysées in Paris, Bastille Day is the opportunity to admire the French military. Saint Cyr and Polytechnique cadets parade, along with official troops, whilst the French Air Force, Patrouille de France, carry out flying in the sky.
A popular custom on Bastille day in Paris is going for a friendly picnic in a public park, socialising, enjoying French food and wine, before watching the fireworks from the Place de la Concorde for example.
In many French villages, people traditionally get together on July, 13 to enjoy a typical Barbecueand sing and dance all night long – taking the advantage of the relaxing public holiday the day after!
The President of the Republic normally attends all the Parisian festivities and ends the 14th July ceremonies with a public interview from the Elysée (President’s official residence).
French National Day
The well-known storming of the Bastille has become a benchmark in terms of Revolt and Liberty all over the world!
Referring to July 14 1789, when a massive crowd of Frenchmen rose up and invaded the prison, Bastille Day is considered the beginning of the French Revolution. Capturing this prison, a symbol of the Ancient Regime, indeed marked the end of Louis XVI’s absolute and arbitrary power and led France to the three ideals of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity. Bastille Day has been known and celebrated as the creation of the Sovereign Nation and what would be the “First” Republic of France (in 1792).
Bastille Day became the National Holiday in 1790, originally called Fête de la Fédération(“federation feast”), to celebrate the first anniversary of the storming of the Bastille and the end of the French Revolution.