Armistice Day Paris

Armistice Day in Paris

October 26, 2019 10:39 am

Armistice Day, also known as Remembrance Day, or Veteran’s Day, is observed annually on November 11. Traditionally, the day marks the end of the First World War (1914-1918), and pays homage to the millions of soldiers and civilians who lost their lives during the conflict. In this article, we will explore the origins of the day and where to commemorate Armistice Day in Paris.

Armistice Day Paris

WW I Ceasefire

The Armistice came into effect on the ‘eleventh month, the eleventh day, and the eleventh hour. All hostilities ended in 1918. The ceasefire was signed inside a train car in Compi├Ęgne (France), at 5:45 a.m. that morning. Though the fighting had stopped, the war wasn’t officially over until the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, June 28, 1919.

Armistice Day Paris

History of Armistice Day in France

In France, Armistice Day was commemorated for the first time on November 11, 1920. To mark the solemn occasion, an unknown solider was interred at the base of the Arc de Triomphe (Paris, France) and given a full military honours. An eternal flame of remembrance was placed above his tomb three years later. Every year, the Armistice Day ceremony takes place near his grave.

Armistice Day Paris

How the French Honour the Day

In 1922, Armistice Day was made a statutory holiday in France. To honour the fallen at 11 a.m. on November 11, every French city has a military gun salute, and wreathes are placed at WW I memorial statues, or graves. Also, there is a bugle call “for the dead”. A moment of silence is not observed, unlike other parts of the world. In 2012, the French Republic decreed that all those who “died for France” will also be honoured on Armistice Day.

Armistice Day Paris

Things to Keep in Mind if you Want to Mark the Day in Paris

If the Arc de Triomphe isn’t for you, the best option would be to attend a ceremony at one of Paris’ cemeteries. (Link here.) Naturally, please arrive well before 11 a.m. Also important to note, many businesses are closed on November 11. It is always a good idea to call in advance, or check online before making plans on Armistice Day in France.

Latest Posts

Top Tips

10 Best Bistrots in Paris

November 8, 2019 by Erin

Palace of Versailles

Things to do in Paris

Palace of Versailles: Your Guide

November 7, 2019 by Erin


Your Guide To The Best Coffee In Paris

November 5, 2019 by Suz Pathmanathan


Have the city in the palm of your hand.
Get a FREE guidebook.

By submitting my email I agree to receive promotional emails, in line with The Paris Pass data policy. data policy.