June in France is when the country comes alive in anticipation of the upcoming summer holidays. With flowers in full bloom, there is an excitement in the air as French children wind down their school year, and the locals start making their vacation plans.
How wonderful then to get a head start to all that holidaying if you are visiting in June, and drink in all of Paris in summer in all its glory. Plus the rest of France is not too shabby either.
Most people love coming to France in June, because the weather is great and the summer crowds have not descended yet. Hotel prices and airfare are generally slightly cheaper than in July and August and you will have an easier time getting tickets to shows and attractions.
It is a time for celebration in France, with events like fête de la musique taking place all over the country, along with the shopping sales season and other smaller events.
There are always many reasons to visit France, but there are some more during this month. So let’s check out the top travel tips for visiting France in June, shall we? Allons-y!
The weather is generally quite nice and balmy in France in June, before all the heatwaves hit at the height of summer.
Average temperatures in June in major cities across France are:
- Paris – 17.7 °C (63.9 °F)
- Lyon – 19.4 °C (66.9 °F)
- Marseille – 21.2 °C (70.2 °F)
- Bordeaux – 19.8 °C (67.6 °F)
- Lille – 16.4 °C (61.6 °F)
- Strasbourg – 18.5 °C (65.4 °F)
- Deauville – 16.3 °C (61.4 °F)
In cities like Paris and Lille, the clouds and the rains have given way to blue skies and plenty of sunshine. The west coast will be a bit windy, but agreeably so. And as for the French Riviera? It couldn’t be more perfect.
Where to go
Most people usually start in Paris, and it is as always a great choice. With blue skies and fewer crowds, you will certainly enjoying sipping a glass of wine and watching the passersby. Museums and other attractions will be crowded enough to require tickets in advance, but not so crowded that you are overwhelmed.
Beyond Paris, you will want to head south. If you have ever dreamed of seeing the lavender fields, this is the time to head to Provence. The lavender will be in full bloom in June and July, right before it is harvested. Harvests take place depending on the sunshine during the season, usually around the middle of July.
Provence and the French Riviera is quite lovely in June, before the summer tourist season starts and with fewer crowds. With plenty of farmers’ markets and village fairs, it is great time to visit villages and small towns in the southern part of France.
Another hidden gem in the month of June is the small town of Provins just outside Paris. The town hosts a couple of festivals during the month including the Fête Médiévale and the Son et Lumière de Provins (sound and light show). It is quite easy to take a day trip from Paris to get to the festivals.
The west coast cities of Deauville, Bordeaux, and Barritz are also excellent places to visit in June, with great surfing conditions. Nearby, you can also visit Mont Saint Michel to see the tides come in.
June Holidays, Events, and Festivals
There are not many national events in France in June but there is a public holiday, as a warm up to the summer holidays. The main festivities and holidays in June include:
1. Lundi de Pentecôte – Pentecost
- Public holiday in France: Yes
- When: 50 days after Easter
Another Catholic holiday, which is also called Whit Sunday in the U.K. In France it is mostly just a holiday in June to recover after all the May holidays, before the big summer vacation hits.
2. Fête de la Musique – Festival of Music
- Public holiday: No
- When: June 21st
It is not a public holiday, but it is a day to mark on the calendar nonetheless. All over France, and especially Paris will turn into a giant music street festival. Small bands, musicians, and just about anyone and everyone will take to a street corner to play their favorite hits.
The party goes on late into the night in Paris, so wear your walking shoes so that you can band hop with the locals.
Note, it can be quite difficult to find a taxi in the middle of the night so check to see what up to what hour the Paris metro runs till. It is best to plan how to get back to your accommodation as there will be a lot of people on the street looking to do the same.
3. Summer sales
If you missed the soldes d’hiver (winter sales) back in January, have no fear, it is time for the soldes d’été! The summer sales start in the last week of June and run for 4 weeks into July. Many of shopping areas in Paris will be particularly lively during the sales period, but you will find sales in stores all over the country.
4. French Open Tennis Tournament (Roland Garros)
If you are in Paris, you can catch the final rounds of the Roland Garros French tennis open which began in late May and wraps up in early June.
The tournament is named after the French aviator Roland Garros, and is played at Stade Roland Garros near Bois de Boulogne in the 16th arrondissement of Paris.
What to Pack
The sunshine may be out in June, but you may still need a light jacket in the evenings.
You can find more French style tips here.
If you enjoyed reading this article, you may enjoy reading more about events in France in other months of the year. A bientôt!