What's on in Paris - May 2019

  • 19, Apr 2019
  • All things Paris
  • Amanda Mehtala

There are many things happening during the month of May in Paris. As there are multiple public holidays in France throughout May, the Parisians often take advantage of a few long weekends to appreciate all the Paris cultural offerings. As the weather gets warmer, many new shows and exhibitions arrive for the spring season, the perfect time to discover something new before heading to a Parisian park to enjoy a picnic alongside the blooming flowers. From food festivals to jazzy tunes and beyond, here’s our monthly list of the best Paris events and new happenings - the May Paris events calendar!

prehistory exhibit pompidou center

Prehistory, a modern riddle exhibit at the Centre Pompidou

May 8 through September 2019

It may seem counterintuitive to house a special exhibition at the Pompidou Center, Paris’ cutting edge modern-art museum. However, this special new arrival is perfectly located, aiming to highlight the ties between prehistoric and contemporary works of art. Explore artwork as the machine that turned back time and shape our modern horizons, in this special exhibition in collaboration with the Museum of Natural History and the Musée de l’Homme.


taste of paris may

Taste of Paris

May 9-12, 2019

One of the ultimate foodie events in Paris, the annual Taste of Paris food festival in the Grand Palais brings together legendary chefs and culinary talents, offering a selection of tasty gourmet delicacies at reduced prices. Witness Michelin-star chefs from around the globe hard at work, and have a chance to taste their original creations without breaking the bank. Last year, over thirty thousand people gathered under the vaulted roof of the Grand Palais for four days of dining, drinking, and live entertainment for food enthusiasts - a can’t miss Paris event!


fete du pain paris best baguette

Fête du Pain - Best baguette in France competition!

May 13-19, 2019

Who doesn’t love French bread? 2019 marks the 23rd edition of a nationwide bread festival, the Fête du Pain. For the occasion, the Esplanade in front of Notre Dame houses an annual competition to determine the Best Baguette in France! Watch French bakers hard at work, sample the different bread options, and discover this year’s baguette champion live!

tower monsieur eiffel poster
musical cast tour de 300 metres

The Tower of Monsieur Eiffel

Playing Thursday - Sunday evening through June 30, 2019

Did you know? The Eiffel Tower is celebrating 130 year birthday in 2019! For the occasion, a brand new musical centered around the creation of the Eiffel Tower is playing this May in Paris. Catchy and fun, the play introduces a gallery of lively characters including Gustave Eiffel himself, his daughter Claire, Maupassant, Ferdinand, and Lesseps. Discover the untold story of France's beloved 300 meter tower. A true exclamation of love for the Eiffel Tower and the city of Paris itself, this brand new original musical is a must see!

Details and reservations

saint germain de pres jazz festival

Saint Germain de Près Jazz Festival

May 17-26, 2019

Created in 2001 and located in the famous Saint-Germain-des-Prés area, the Festival Jazz à Saint-Germain-des-Prés Paris is one of the greatest jazz events in Paris each Spring. Enjoy exceptional concerts, unique meetings, creations, talented young artists and international stars. Since 2001, the festival has welcomed : Lisa Simone, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Brad Meldhau, the first concert of Norah Jones in France, Manu Katché, Manu Dibango, Michel Legrand, Michel Portal, Kyle Eastwood, Melanie de Biasio, Roberto Fonseca, Vijay Iyer, Paolo Fresu, Kenny Barron, Kurt Elling, Lucky Peterson, Richard Galliano, Ben l’Oncle Soul, Raphael Gualazzi, Eric Bibb, Hugh Coltman, Baptiste Trotignon, Avishai Cohen, and more! Explore the 2019 show programme and see incredible jazz numbers in unique locations throughout the historic Saint Germain de Près district.


paris nuit des musées

European Museum Night - Nuit des musées

May 18, 2019

Each May throughout Europe, museums open their doors for the European Museum Night, included a packed program of special events and exclusive visits. The best part? All are open to the public for free! With a jam-packed schedule in many historic Parisian museums, as well as a few smaller places to discover, you get to pick and choose where and how you’d like to spend a wonderful Saturday evening in Paris. Our tip: this is a VERY popular event among Parisians, and many special events and popular locations attract large crowds, arrive as early as possible to avoid spending too much time waiting in line.


printemps des rues street art festival

Spring Street Art Festival

May 25-26, 2019

The annual Spring Street Art Festival is a local favorite celebrating not only painted street art, but also street performers of all kinds! Located in the northeastern corner of Paris throughout the vibrant 10th, 18th and 19th arrondissements, enjoy a full weekend of admiring street art, dancers, magicians, and even theatrical performances. The event has been held each May for over 20 years, and has become a local favorite, a wonderful way to get outside, explore a new neighborhood of Paris, and enjoy some incredible artistic talents!


roland garros tennis paris

Roland Garros French Open

May 26 - June 9, 2019

Since 1928, Paris has housed the annual Roland Garros Tennis Tournament, drawing the world’s top talent in tennis for a 2 week tournament. Tickets to attend a match can be expensive and difficult to come by, but for the lucky ones attending the event at least once has become a bucket list item for Parisians and visitors alike. The event draws celebrities from all over the globe, who knows who you might be sitting next to!


moliere play paris dom juan
dom juan ranelagh may paris

The new arrival of a classic French play - Molière’s Dom Juan

Playing Wednesday, Friday, & Sunday evenings through July 14, 2019

The latest classic French play performed at the historic Theatre Ranelagh is a very special Molière piece, Dom Juan. Don’t speak French? Not to worry, all the classics at this Parisian theatre are performed in French with English subtitles!

About the show: Young Italian noble Dom Juan, accompanied by his squire Sganarelle, departs on a conquest not for glory or honour, but rather conquests of the heart. Not knight in shining armour seeking out his princess, on the contrary Dom Juan and his companion are much more interested in adding to their list of beautiful peasant women they have seduced only to promptly leave behind! Will his wrongdoings catch up with him in the end?

Details & reservation

versailles garden fountain show

Grands Eaux Fountain show at the Château de Versailles

April - October 2019

Each spring, the gardens and fountains of the Chateau de Versailles come to life with a musical water show. During the Musical Fountains Show you can discover and enjoy the extraordinary beauty of the Château de Versailles gardens, of its groves exceptionally open to the public and of its fountains playing to the tune of period music.


Curious about even more Parisian events? Explore the Paris events calendar for June 2019!


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