What to Do in France in May

What to Do in France in May

The promise of warmer days and plenty of bank holidays in May are the perfect excuse to get out and about in France. Here is France Today’s round-up of events, new exhibitions and openings in May 2024

Achille et la guerre de Troie exhibition, Nîmes – until January 5 2025

The legendary hero who distinguished himself by his valour during the Trojan War is the centre of a major exhibition at the Musée de la Romanité.

Sarcophagus representing Achilles at Skyros © Musée du Louvre

Maîtres et Merveilles exhibition, Dijon – May 4 – September 23

The Musée des Beaux-Arts de Dijon brings us ‘Maîtres et Merveilles’, a panorama of German painting through 250 works from the 15th to the early 16th century.


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A post shared by Musées de Dijon (@museesdijon)

Vauvert Abrivado, Gard – May 9

Come to Vauvert in the Gard for a seriously competitive Abrivado horse and bull weekend, followed by a convivial peña, folk music and parade. The Abrivado recreates the ancestral tradition of moving cattle from the pastures back to the arenas by leading bulls through the streets of a village.  


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A post shared by Ville de Vauvert (@villedevauvert)

Journey to the centre of the earth, Gouffre de Padirac – May 10-11

To mark the 160th anniversary of the publication of Jules Verne’s famous adventure novel, Journey to the Centre of the Earth, the spectacular subterranean  chasm Le Gouffre de Padirac, in the Lot, is welcoming a theatre group to take visitors on a journey into the world of the book, with an all-new immersive play. Actors from Crumble Production will transport you back to the great age of exploration in the Belle Époque, taking you on an extraordinary trip between dream and reality. “It resonates perfectly with the very essence of the site, which celebrates exploration, adventure and discovery in each of its offerings,” they say.

© Crumble Production

Sedan’s medieval festival – May 11-12

Step back in time at this celebration of all things medieval in Sedan’s fortified castle in the Ardennes. For this year’s theme – la Fête du Feu – enjoy live music and performances from travelling companies of musicians, street theatre, and combat demonstrations and amble along the camps to watch shows, workshops and re-enactments of daily life (cooking, smithy, glassmaking, making clothes, etc.) as well as a medieval market with over one hundred stalls.

Sedan’s fortified castle plays host to the yearly Medieval festival © Thierry Michel

Strawberry festival of Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne – May 12

Enjoy a taste of springtime at la Fête de la Fraise in Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne in Corrèze with a splendid market, tastings, arts and crafts, music, games and, of course, a giant strawberry tart. 

Strawberry tart © Le grand Cricri

Cannes Film Festival – May 14-25

The International Film Festival is back for our annual dose of talent, glitz and celebrity glamour on the Côte d’Azur. The jury of this upcoming 77th edition is chaired by American filmmaker and actress Greta Gerwig.

Cannes Red Steps © Christophe Bouillon

La Nuit des Musées, France-wide – May 18

Discover a different and fun museum experience as more than 1,300 museums and monuments all over France open for free during the European Night of Museums. Celebrating its 20th anniversary, this is a unique opportunity to discover the permanent collections as well as special exhibits and one-off activities such as workshops, guided tours, musical performances and more. 

Musée Rodin in Paris © Musée Rodin

Roland-Garros, Paris – May 20 – June 9

Experience the thrills and spills of Roland-Garros 2024 as the world’s best tennis players battle for glory at the prestigious Grand Slam tournament.

Roland Garros © Passion Leica / Flickr

Monaco Grand Prix – May 23-26

Witness the heartpounding action of the 2024 Monaco Grand Prix in the F1 iconic street circuit in Monte Carlo. An unforgettable weekend of speed and glamour.

Monaco Grand Prix © United Autosports / Flickr

Lead photo credit : Roland Garros © Passion Leica / Flickr

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