What is Paris like on Bastille Day?
Bastille day is a huge National holiday celebrated in Paris and certainly not to be missed! WHat is Paris like on Bastille Day? Throughout the day there will be a full program of parades, fireworks, concerts and balls to commemorate the beginning of the French Revolution back in the 18th century. The French are pretty tied to their history, so it’s a big deal guys!
What’s going to be open?
As it is a national holiday, many establishments will be closed on the 14th July, or at least have shorter opening hours. We recommend you check the website of any café/ restaurant/ museum etc that you are planning to visit to avoid any disappointment!
Some of the main tourist attractions which will be open:
This website is very helpful in giving a broad view of what will be open.
Getting around in Paris on Bastille Day
We recommend using the metro/ RER. During the 14th July, the metro will run an hour longer than usual, with the last trains arriving at their terminus at around 2:15 am.
There will be various metro stations closed at different times, follow the link to find out more.
Car & bus
Avoid using the car/ bus if possible! The roads surrounding Trocadéro will be closed off to vehicles from 2pm
Velib, the city wide bike sharing system will be available except for the Velib stations located around Champ de Mars.
Parking will be forbidden from 7am on the 14th July- 3am on he 15th on the following roads: Rue de Longchamp, the road between place d’Iéna and rue de Lübeck ; Avenue d’Iéna; Avenue Albert-de-Mun ; Avenue des Nations Unies ; Place de Varsovie ; Avenue New-York ; Rue Le Nôtre ; Quai Branly ; Avenue Octave Gréard ; Avenue Gustave Eiffel ; Avenue Sylvestre de Sacy ; Avenue de la Motte Picquet.
Parking will be free on the 14th July
What’s going on in Paris on Bastille Day
The military parade along the famous Champs Elysées kicks the day of festivities off with an impressive start. Go and wave to the French President as he, along with the French army, march down the beautiful avenue. There will be huge crowds, so make sure you arrive early!
For those who are hardcore early birds, you can enjoy the parade without the queues if you head to the Champs at 4am!
Concert on the Champs de Mars
A huge scale classical concert will be performed on the Champ de Mars, at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, beginning at 9:15pm. The theme is “welcome to Paris”, which has been interpreted by the National French orchestra, le Choeur and Radio France who will be performing their compositions in front of the awaiting crowds. This event immediately proceeds the firework display and will be incredibly busy. We recommend getting there very early, you could even go for an early afternoon picnic on the Champ de Mars to guarantee a good spot for the evening!
Starts at 9:30 until 11pm
Firework display at the Eiffel Tower!
From 11pm, a spectacular firework display will illuminate the Paris sky for a whole 35 minutes! The fireworks show is following the theme of the evening, “Paris welcomes the world”. This event will be very very busy, so arrive early and expect crowds. Certain metro stations surrounding Champ de Mars, click here to find out more.
Starts 11pm- 11:35pm
It’s going to get hot in fire stations across the city on the 13th and 14th July! The fireman’s ball will be held in fire stations in each arrondissement in Paris, so for those who like a man in a uniform, this may just be the chance to meet a fireman who lights up your fire.
Check this website for more info about the fireman’s ball program.
What is Paris like on Bastille Day and Where You Should Go
For the views
Check out our article on the best views of the Eiffel Tower to discover the best spots to get a winning view of the firework display.
For the gourmet food
For the music
Le Point Ephémère is celebrating the revolution in style with Le Bal Pop’; two evenings of live DJ sets to dance the night away!
Brasserie Barbés is hosting a rock themed party on the 13th July from midnight until 2am if you want to rock out in style!