Festivals in Paris
Paris, like many European capitals, has a fairly gruesome history of religious upheaval, extremism and associated massacres or other repressions. So, today, the modern French state centered on Paris is totally and irrevocably committed to secularism. Although the country remains notionally Roman Catholic, there is no ‘official religion’ and most French people of European origin incline towards a quiet passive personal belief or atheism/agnosticism. For those reasons, large-scale religious festivals and associated celebrations don’t play a major part in Parisian life though for historic reasons many traditional Christian holidays continue to be celebrated as public holidays. Other non-religious events include Mayday (Labor Day), Bastille Day and Armistice Day. France’s large Muslim community, (around 10-12% of the French population), may typically be more religiously observant and will celebrate festivals such as Eid Al-Fitr. Broadly speaking, Parisian festivals and holidays are low-key and sophisticated rather than massively and chaotically exuberant in the sense of, say, the “Mardi Gras”. Local tours through Withlocals will help you discover the best festivals in your chosen area.