Bienvenue to the world of French media. This is where daily newspapers show their chops, magazines flaunt their flair, and local regional press shares all the hidden gems that you may not catch anywhere else.
The French media landscape is quite diverse, with a lot of options and opinions. Since it may not be obvious at first glance, I should note that many French publications can lean politically towards the left (socially conscious) or the right (conservative and economically liberal).
As such I’ve added a few notes to the list so that you can gage the subtleties. So with that, let’s get to the top newspapers and news websites in France shall we? Allons-y!
National French press daily
- Le Monde – national newspaper, generally considered to be neutral and “the reference”.
- Le Figaro – large national newspaper, generally considered to be conservative with right wing opinions.
- Le Parisien – local Parisian newspaper with a national edition. Generally considered to be neutral.
- L’Obs – smaller newspaper, considered to be on the left.
- Le Liberation – smaller newspaper, considered to be on the far left.
- Les Échos – business and economy newspaper.
- L’Humanité – smaller newspaper, Communist party’s newspaper.
- La Croix – smaller newspaper, French Catholic newspaper.
- L’Opinion – began in 2013, newspaper leaning towards the right.
- 20 Minutes – free daily newspaper for commuters.
Online news websites (in French)
While most French daily newspapers also have websites, the following websites do not have a print edition. Their focus is mainly online, on TV or radio, and as such their articles are usually not behind a paywall:
- France 24 – public broadcast TV and website (run by the French government).
- RFI – public broadcast radio and website.
- BFM news – tv channel and website, generally neutral.
- Cnews – tv channel and website, leans right.
- Mediapart – subscription investigative magazine that is online only, leans far left.
- Slate.fr – French version of Slate.com.
- Huffintonpost.fr – French version of Huffingtonpost.
When it comes to French news magazines that you can find on newsstands, the following are the most well-known:
- Le Point – news and political magazine, generally on the right.
- L’Express – news and political magazine. Started off in the 1950s as a magazine on the left, but currently tends to lean neutral or right.
- Le Journal du Dimanche – respected weekly national publication
- Challenges – business and economy magazine
- Le Canard enchaîné – daily satirical magazine
- Courrier international – daily magazine with foreign press articles translated into French.
- Charlie Hebdo – French satirical weekly magazine known for its controversial comics.
French news sites in English
If you are looking for French news in English, the following websites are the most popular.
- France 24 – public broadcaster, run by the French government.
- RFI – Radio France International in English, public broadcaster.
- Le Monde english edition – paywall.
- Le Monde diplomatique – by subscription.
- Mediapart – subscription, leans far left.
- The Connexion – paywall after a certain number of articles.
- Local France – paywall after a certain number of articles.
With the French CAC40 being one of the major indices in the world, the following websites cover the top business news in France:
- Les Échos – daily newspaper focusing on the economy.
- Challenges – business magazine.
- BFM Business – business TV channel and website, part of the BFM business group.
If you are looking for something other than the news, the following magazines cover the entertainment sector:
- Paris Match – celebrity and entertainment magazine.
- Version Femina – largest magazine targeting French women with an older demographic.
- Grazia – gossip, fashion brands, and entertainment magazine
- Closer – gossip magazine
- Femme actuelle – magazine targeting women with topics like dating, cooking, making friends etc.
- Télé Loisirs – French tv news.
Regional and local newspapers across France
There are several large regional newspapers across France (which are often associated with the daily national press). The biggest and most popular of regional news providers are:
- Ouest-France – biggest regional daily from in and around Brittany on the west coast, based in the city of Rennes.
- Sud-Ouest – 2nd biggest regional daily from in and around Nouvelle Aquitaine on the south west coast, based in the city of Bordeaux.
- La Provence – news from in and around the city of Marseille in the south of France.
- Nice-Matin – news from in and around the city of Nice on the French Riviera.
- La Voix du Nord – news from in and around the city of Lille in the north of France
- Le Télégramme – news from in and around Brittany on the west coast, based in the city of Morlaix.
- Le Dauphiné libéré – news from in and around the Alps, including Savoy, Ardèche, Ain, and the Vaucluse.
While most daily French newspapers will have some sports coverage, the following sports magazines have dedicated coverage:
- L’Equipe – sports magazine with tv channel.
- RMC sports – tv, radio and online magazine that is part of the BFMTV group.
- France football – dedicated to football (soccer).
- 10sport – smaller sports news site.
- Le Phoceen – news dedicated to the Olympique de Marseille football club.
- Made in Parisiens – news dedicated to the Paris Saint Germain football club.
If you enjoyed that article, you may like to read more interesting facts about France. A bientôt!