The finest festivals à Paris

Paris is not only a city for romance – music is at its heart too. We cherry pick three of the best open-air musical events offering that je ne sais quoi

Festival Jazz, Saint Germain-des-Prés

Jazz lovers should head to this annual event held around the Left Bank in May. Founded in 2001, Festival Jazz features plenty of free open-air gigs, as well as concerts in historic spots, cafés and theatres.

Base yourself in a central location, such as the Hôtel Du Louvre, a short stroll from must-see landmarks including Palais-Royal, Louvre Museum and Palais Garnier.

The event also overlaps with the Paris Jazz Festival, which takes place in June and July in the stunning Parc Floral de Paris, just a few minutes from the city centre.

Fête De La Musique, various locations

This international festival annually celebrates summer solstice, and is open to all – both amateur and professional – who stage open-air gigs for free in streets, parks and public buildings.

It aims to promote different musical talents in a range of genres, including opera, rock, choral and orchestral, by encouraging artists to perform in unusual locations and also to promote an exchange between new and established talent.

Launched in 1982 by the French Ministry of Culture, the Fête de la Musique is held in more than 100 countries throughout Europe and across the world.

Stay at the InterContinental Paris Le Grand or the Hotel Edouard 7 to be right next to the opera house.

Solidays, Hippodrome de Longchamp

Music fans will love Solidays, a three-day music festival, which takes place in June. And you’ll be partying for a good cause, as the event raises money for various charities.

2014 saw more than 170,000 people turn up to see the eclectic line-up, which included Scottish rock band Franz Ferdinand and singer and model Vanessa Paradis. Featuring everything from rock ‘n’ roll to electro music, rising young French musicians to Jamaican legends, the Solidays line-up attracts a larger audience each year.

The event takes place at the Hippodrome de Longchamp, where many people camp over the three days. But for those who want a bit more luxury, it’s just as easy to stay on the Left Bank, close to other attractions, and take the Métro to Porte d’Auteuil station, the nearest to the venue. Stay at Relais Christine for easy Métro access, close to Notre-Dame.

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