The festive season brings a wealth of cultural outings, events and festivals to France. Here are some favourites.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and the most musical! There are more concerts on the calendar than you can shake an oboe at. Whichever the genre, classical, sacred or popular, music unfailingly adds a magical dimension to the holiday season. Christmas and New Year sees a packed programme of exciting shows in Paris, from cabaret and musical theatre to classical concerts and ballets. Make memories with your loved ones for a holiday experience that you will remember for years to come.
To celebrate in a traditional way, make for one of Paris’ many churches, such as Sacré-Cœur basilica, or L’église de la Madeleine, where you can take part in worship or simply enjoy a moment of reflection while admiring the architecture to the background of exceptional choirs. Why not head to one of the splendid formal concert venues like the Philarmonie or the Opéra? For a pinch-me moment, can you think of a more sublime way to celebrate the season than a dose of Vivaldi at la Sainte-Chapelle? We certainly can’t…
Calendar of concerts in Paris: en.parisinfo.com
LYON IS #LIT
The spectacular Festival of Lights in Lyon fills the city with magic in every corner. Locals take to the streets to admire the eye-popping light installations and most homes shine a light in their windows to join in the spirit.
December 8 to 11: www.fetedeslumieres.lyon.fr
The capital of Christmas in France, Strasbourg goes all out with several markets in the city centre, packed with stands offering gifts, crafts and delicious local specialities.
November 26 to December 26 (some markets until Dec 30): noel.strasbourg.eu
Visit the northern city of Lille at its most magical. The Big Wheel offers a fantastic view of the city and the twinkling Christmas village below in the Grand Place.
November 19 to December 30: www.noel-a-lille.com
Mulled wine, indulgent treats, illuminations and music, Christmas markets pop up all over the capital, notably Saint-Germain-des-Prés, Champs-Elysées, and Jardin des Tuileries to name a few.
November 28 to December 30: www.parisinfo.com
The entire city of Nancy is transformed to make way for the world of Saint Nicholas with rides, fairy-like creatures, fantastical heroes and delicious surprises.
December 3 to 5: saint-nicolas.nancy.fr
From France Today magazine