Great Escapes

European Travel Blog

Bastille Celebrations in Paris

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As I’m sure you are aware Monday, July 14 is Bastille Day, an annual event when the whole of France celebrates the storming of the Bastille Prison and the beginning of the French Revolution in 1789.  If you are in France next Monday we’d love to hear about the celebrations where you are. Even better send me some photos! You can email me at Kathryn@GreatEscapes.co.uk.  

Here are a few highlights of the celebrations in Paris for Bastille Day 2014.

Paris’ Military Parade

A military parade along the Avenue des Champs-Elysées is the highlight the regiments of the French military, which will parade in the morning. This year’s theme is the Centenary of The Great War.

© Paris Tourist Office - Photographer : Marc Bertrand

© Paris Tourist Office – Photographer : Marc Bertrand

The day’s programme (subject to change)
9.10am Troops, gather at the Place de l’Etoile / Avenue des Champs-Elysées.
9.20am Inspection of the troops.
9.45am Honorary detachments of the Republican Guard take their places at Place de l’Etoile and Place de la Concorde.
10am Arrival of the President of the French Republic at Avenue de Friedland. Welcome by General Pierre de Villiers, Chief of Defence Staff, and General Hervé Charpentier, the Military Governor of Paris. Review of the troops.
10.15am Tribute paid to the President of the French Republic by the 1st infantry regiment of the Republican Guard at Place de la Concorde. Welcome by the prime minister, M. Manuel Valls, the Minister of Defence, M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, secretary of state for veterans affairs, M. Kader Arif and Général Benoît Puga.
10.20am Opening event.
10.35am Opening fly-past led by Air Marshal Thierry Caspar-Fille-Lambie.
10.45am Parade of troops on foot led by Brigadier Henry Bazin.
11.25am Parade of motorized troops led by General Marcel Druart.
11.45am Closing event.
12 noon Departure of the President of the French Republic.

© Paris Tourist Office - Photographer : Marc Bertrand

© Paris Tourist Office – Photographer : Marc Bertrand

Paris’ fireworks

The fireworks will be launched from Bassins du Trocadéro and can be viewed from the Champs de Mars and Trocadéro.

11.00pm: A firework display lasting 35 minutes with the theme “Guerre et Paix”.

© Paris Tourist Office - Photographer : Amélie Dupont

© Paris Tourist Office – Photographer : Amélie Dupont

Firemen’s balls

Numerous firemen’s balls happen each year in stations throughout France, in general starting at 9pm and going on until 4pm. Some have an entrance fee while others are free but have a traditional donation barrel. The money collected will be used to improve the working conditions of staff.

A list of balls in Paris and the surrounding regions can be found here.

And don’t forget, if you are in France that day (or have been in the past) we’d love to hear about the celebrations where you area and see your photos.  You can email me at Kathryn@GreatEscapes.co.uk.  

Author: Kathryn Burrington

Travel writer, photographer and blogger for the Serenity Holidays group, including the short break experts, Great Escapes.

2 thoughts on “Bastille Celebrations in Paris

  1. I’ll be in Strasbourg so will see if I can get you some fireworks pics! I celebrated Bastille Day in Paris a few years back – it’s also my birthday so it was like the city had put on a party for me!

  2. Belated Happy Birthday Lucy! Saw some of your lovely firework pictures on Twitter – they put on quite a show for you. Hope you had a wonderful day. If you’d like to share any photos (from Paris or Starsbourg) and a few words about how you spent your day, we’d love to share them.

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