Bastille Day

May 24th, 2001, 03:15 AM
  #1  
Linda
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Bastille Day

I will be in Paris for the first time ever, for one day, on July 14 (I live on a military base in Germany). I just realized it is a national holiday in France. Has anyone when been there on this day, their Fourth of July? Will everything be closed, or will it be business as usual? Thanks for any info you can share.

Linda
 
May 24th, 2001, 05:16 AM
  #2  
Rex
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Although I have never actually been in Paris on 14 July, I have been in France - - and I was surprised at how much was open (this was out in the countryside). Anything tourist-connected will be open. I suspect that major department stores, grocery stores, etc will be open. Small service-oriented businesses (laundries, barbers) would probably close.

And I think it is probabky just in America that the term Bastille day is used. I have never heard anyone in France use anything like it; it's Fete National (National Holiday) or simply le quatorze juillet. There will be a wonderful parade (military regalia, bands, pomp and circumstance, maybe President Chirac waving to the crowds) on the Champs Elysees, with people lined up ten deep to see (at least there was when I was there on a May 8 - - Liberation Day - - what we called V-E day).

Best wishes,

Rex
 
May 24th, 2001, 06:42 AM
  #3  
Judy
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My very first trip to Paris was in July. Bastile Day was very CROWDED. I was very young then and was chased by a few strangers. I ended up running back to my hotel .
 
May 24th, 2001, 07:36 AM
  #4  
Seamus
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Been there, enjoyed that!
Bastille day fireworks areound the eiffel tower are terrific, but expect crushing crowds. The holiday spirit prevails but most businesses remain open - this is a capitalist society, after all, and why chut the door when there are so many folks about?
Enjoy, expect to deal with crowds but also expect that they will be cheery and safe if you follow common sense.
 
May 24th, 2001, 07:49 AM
  #5  
Shannon
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Linda

Just curious. Which military base do you live on? I also am on one in Germany!
 
May 24th, 2001, 09:01 AM
  #6  
Linda
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We are near the Bitburg/Spangdahlem area. We've been here only 6 months and we love it. We're going to Amsterdam in June, and Vienna in September. These boards have been so helpful to me in planning our trips. Maybe when we've seen a few sights I'll be able to add my 2 cents.

Linda

 
May 24th, 2001, 10:49 AM
  #7  
Christina
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I have been to Paris several times on Bastille Day (and will be again this year) and do not recall that major dept stores were open. In fact, they are often closed on more minor national holidays (eg, Whit Monday). Major businesses are, I believe, the ones more likely to be closed because they have more employees and more labor laws apply to them and they are more visible. Small family businesses can better do what they want and many of them remain open if they sell thing (groceries, etc) and plenty of places to eat do, also. Even some of the major monuments and museums will be open (eg, the Louvre is scheduled to be open and I've been to Pantheon on that day when admission to all monuments in Paris was free due to the holiday), so don't worry about everything being closed; I just would not plan shopping expeditions to the major dept. stores. (BTW the correct term is "fête nationale" because fête is a feminine word; the French govt Tourism Organization calls it Bastille Day rather than Fête Nationale for some reason I don't know, probably because a lot of foreigners know it that way; it was declared that date in commemoration of the taking of the Bastille). Unfortunately, I am going to school in Paris this July and we even have classes on that day, even though it is a national holiday and Saturday to boot.
 

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