Bastille Day

It's the best French annual event

Ronnie McCluskey

Ronnie McCluskey
HomeAway travel expert

Bastille Day in Paris!The name doesn’t quickly conjure the same jubilant images of, say, Independence Day in America. You may not have even heard of it. But on the 14th of July, this French celebration sparks the mother of all parties not only in its homeland, but all over the world. The day is held to commemorate the iconic storming of the oppressive Bastille prison in 1789, an event considered in French history to be an important and symbolic milestone in the uprising against the monarchy. And whilst still taken as a chance to pay tribute to their ancestors, these days a carnival atmosphere is the order of the day!

Naturally, the first instinct would be to head straight to the source of the party in Paris, or at least in France. However, as you would probably expect from a nation which has impacted so prominently on international culture, the celebrations are conducted on a global scale. Whether you head for Marseille or Manhattan, HomeAway Holiday Rentals is sure to have just the property for you. For affordable prices you will find a host of spacious and comfortable bases from which to enjoy your visit. Before you book though, why not take a look at our guides to the best Bastille Day events?


Top five destinations in which to celebrate Bastille Day


Bastille Day - Paris Bastille Day - Paris

OK, it’s probably the first place you thought of. Then again, that was with good reason: Bastille Day or no Bastille Day, Paris is a city of wonders - visit at any time of year and you're sure to be impressed. Aside from the fact that the City of Love was the home of the Bastille itself, and therefore the venue of the uprising, any capital city is as good a place as any to start a national party. The celebrations actually kick off the previous night as bars, nightclubs and, bizarrely, fire stations across the city host a selection of special events. The day itself sees a spectacular military parade march down the infamous Champs-Élysées, while air shows, street entertainment and a stunning fireworks display illuminate the night sky around the Eiffel Tower.

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Bastille Day - Nice Bastille Day - Nice

Away from the urban chaos of the larger cities is Nice, a visually breathtaking Mediterranean haven on the southern coast of France. The celebrations here follow in much the same vein as their cousins in the north, with military parades and live entertainment spanning six stages. Countless genres of music play out along the beautiful Promenade des Anglais. At 10pm the fireworks draw proceedings to a close, set against a backdrop of French Riviera shoreline. Pleasingly this is all free, so you can absorb the whole experience without worrying about your bank balance.

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Bastille Day - London Bastille Day - London

Such a boisterous occasion should never be exclusive merely to those at the hub of the action, and that is exactly why England's very own capital has got in on the act each year since 2008. For one day only, the south bank of the Thames by London Bridge is transformed into a mini Francais, with Borough Market offering visitors and locals alike the opportunity to sample some delicacies from across the Channel. As well as wining and dining, you'll be kept entertained by the strains of accordion music, magic shows and all manner of quirky street entertainment.

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Bastille Day - New Orleans Bastille Day - New Orleans

When is France not in France? When it’s in New Orleans, of course! With the infamous French Quarter already a favourite destination for visitors to the Louisiana city, the Big Easy might just boast the most dynamic Bastille Day bash outside of Paris itself. Americans as a rule tend not to do things by halves, so the party is a befittingly stylish affair in the Faubourg St. John neighbourhood, once home to many French Creole aristocratic families. There are an array of musical and cultural events to soak in, and if you feel like trying your hand at some traditional French sport, you can participate in a round of petanque.

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Bastille Day - New York Bastille Day - New York

The people of Manhattan have something of a historic friendship with their French cousins across the Atlantic. After all, has there ever been a more enduring or symbolic gift than the Statue of Liberty? To celebrate this mutual bond, every July 14th sees a segment of Manhattan’s 60th street erupt in a display of cross-cultural festivities, with a vast array of both traditional and contemporary food, drink and entertainment hailing from the home of Bastille Day. Any visitors who consider themselves a wizard with a pencil can also test their skills in the annual prize-drawing competition.

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Accommodation in Paris

Beautiful Parisian apartment near Montmartre

Beautiful parisian apartment, crossing and sunny, ideally located one hundred meters from Montmartre in a very pleasant and lively neighborhood . Parisian charm and refined decoration, it has two rooms and every comfort. Stays from three nights,...

Stylish 1 bedroom apartment - Louvre Museum, Mona Lisa at your door!

Ideally located in the very center of cultural and historical Paris 1st district, nearby the famous metro station 'palais-royal/musée du louve' (line 1), this stylish apartment, tastefully renovated in February 2012 ,is only a few steps away from ...

Lovely apartment in the heart of the Marais

In a peaceful street in the heart of a lively and shopping district, this furnished apartment with typical architecture of the Marais will allow you to enjoy the vicinity of the most beautiful sites of Paris: Place des Vosges (0.2 km away), rue Sa...

Quiet & sunny apartment in Paris centre, very near to major touristic sites

This apartment covers 50 m2, at 4th floor with lift, giving on one side on rue Vaneau, overlooking Hotel Matignon’s park (the Prime Minister’s residence) on the other side. It comprises two rooms : - one bedroom with 2 single beds and two large wa...

St-Germain : Luxury and spacious 3 bedrooms / 3 bathrooms apartment

Location This beautiful apartment to rent in paris is located in one of the most popular, active and sparkling neighbourhoods of central paris and the most fashionable district of the capital. It is mid-way between the carrefour de l’odeon, a sma...
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