European Heritage Days

Journées européennes du patrimoine
The Heritage Trail of France: Paris, Bordeaux, Séez in September 2016

With the official theme for 2016 focusing on the relationship between heritage and citizenship, European Heritage Days in France will revive local histories to explore how individuals help in preserving the shared heritage and promoting its values. As a country with one of the most turbulent histories on the Old Continent and also the initiator of what is to become the most widely celebrated cultural event in Europe, France will present its rich heritage for the 33rd time in 2016.

The events will be held across the country on 17th and 18th September when a wide range of venues will welcome dozens of thousands of visitors. Among the cities that traditionally attract heritage explorers,  Paris, Bordeaux and Seez will once again have programs specifically designed to suit this year’s theme.  

An Entirely Different Paris

The French capital holds many cultural and historical wonders that have been attracting both local people and tourists from all over the world for centuries. Third on Forbs’s list of the world’s most visited cities, Paris indeed has a lot to offer to everyone interested in heritage, history, and culture. This September, however, the city will shine in a different light. Besides the popular venues such as Philharmonie de Paris, the Fondation Louis Vuitton and the Cité de la Mode et du Design, Paris will offer its citizens ant tourists to discover much more than that on the third weekend in September.

Namely, European Heritage Days are the time of the year in Paris when numerous places not normally opened to public offer a free entrance. This is the case with various political institutions such as The President’s residence The Palais de l’Elysée, The Prime Minister’s residence L’Hôtel Matignon and the upper and lower houses of the French parliament. For most Parisians, European Heritage Days represent the only opportunity to discover this side of their capital and get an inside look into the places where the most important political decisions are made.

UNESCO World Heritage City of Bordeaux

With a status of World Heritage Site, Bordeaux represents another gem on the heritage trail of France. This famous port city whose gothic cathedrals, art museums and perhaps most notably wine have been attracting tourists for centuries will be in spotlight during European Heritage Days with its rich offer of events.

The city is known as “Little Paris” because of its exceptional 18th century architecture that is best reflected in some of the well-known architectural gems in this city, many of which will offer free tours during European Heritage Days. Among the most popular sites, free entrances are traditionally offered in Bordeaux National Opera, which is considered to be one of the most beautiful theatres in Europe and Saint Pierre church whose gothic ornaments have conspicuously stood in the city centre for over five centuries.

The Authentic South Eastern French Architecture in Seez

The city of Seez in south-eastern France marked the dates for European Heritage Days earlier this year and plans to host numerous tours, exhibitions and workshops to unravel the city’s long history. Visitors will be able to visit Baroque church located in the city centre, have a guided tour in Jewellery and Blacksmith Museum and learn more about landmarks such as Saint Bernard Pass Hospice, Saint Germain Mill and others. Together with the rest of inspiring cities in France, Seez will join the celebration of culture and history to which we all owe the knowledge we have today.