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Here at French Connections we love to find out what’s coming up in France and of course to share that news with you! France is the most visited country in the world and there’s a reason that this is a constant, so much to see and do – everywhere you go.

La Rosière: A new ski area in Savoie

La Rosière-Espace San Bernardo has expanded its ski area for the 2018-19 season, with a new sector named Mont Valaisan opening in December. Five new red pistes have been created, served by two high-speed, six-seater chairlifts: the Moulin and the Mont Valaisan. The expansion has cost €15m and offers a more technical ski area with greater freeride opportunities. It’s all part of a dramatic transformation of this once-sleepy resort. www.larosiere.net/en/new-in-winter-2019

Viva Leonarda da Vinci 2019 Loire Valley

2019 will mark the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci at Amboise at the Chateau du Clos Lucé (above), the start of the construction of the Château of Chambord and the birth of Catherine de’ Medici in Florence. The Loire Valley region will celebrate the artistic, scientific and intellectual effervescence of the Renaissance in France with a major programme of events, trips and exhibitions. www.loirevalley-france.co.uk/

Commonwealth War Graves Commission “Behind the Scenes” Visitor Centre, Arras

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission will welcome visitors from Spring 2019 to the battlefields of Northern France, to gain a fascinating insight into the work of the extraordinary international organisation as it opens its first visitor centre in Beaurains, near Arras. www.cwgc.org

10 years of Roman Games, Nimes

Channel your inner Roman during the weekend of 3-5 May 2019 in Nimes which is celebrating 10 years of annual games with extra-special circus shows (‘ludi’) in is famous Roman arena. Expect horse demonstrations, chariot races and gladiator battles, military parades, Roman bivouacs, themed tours, exhibitions, conferences and around 500 participating actors from all over Europe. The theme for 2019 is Barbarian Kings. www.arenes-nimes.com/en

75th Anniversary of the D-Day landings, Normandy

All eyes will be on Normandy in 2019 as Thursday 6 June marks the 75th anniversary of the D-Day Landings and the Battle of Normandy, a momentous occasion to celebrate peace, liberty and reconciliation. The D-Day Festival will run from 1-9 June with a programme of events bringing the memory of this tragic period of world history to life, all the while emphasising the spirit of hope. The 75th anniversary will be commemorated with events and festivities such as parades, firework displays, air shows and military re-enactments. www.normandy-dday.com

Rouen Armada, Normandy

Celebrating its 30th anniversary, this key event in the international sailing calendar draws thousands of sailors to Rouen’s quaysides alongside 50 magnificent tall ships, military boats and submarines from all over the world. The 10 days of celebrations, from 6-16 June 2019, will conclude with a parade along the River Seine. The Rouen Armada is one of the largest free-admission maritime events in the world and expects to welcome over 10 million visitors. The sailors will party with the locals in the city's bars and clubs, while the Armada village will come alive with concerts, fireworks and other entertainment. http://en.normandie-tourisme.fr/calendar-of-events/rouen-armada-834-2.html

Cité de la Gastronomie, Lyon

Lyon is often called the gastronomic capital of France and in the summer of 2019, the French city will see the opening of the Cité Internationale de la Gastronomie. Visitors will experience a venue entirely devoted to fine food from around the world as well as culinary traditions. It will be housed in the newly renovated Grand Hôtel Dieu. The project will be listed as UNESCO World Heritage just as French cuisine is.

Fondation Luma, Arles

Designer Frank Gehry’s vertiginous, twisting tower at LUMA Arles is taking shape on its 16-acre site in the city of Arles, Provence. The tower will support a variety of functions including research facilities, workshops and seminar rooms as well as artists’ studios. Work is expected to be completed in summer 2019. While it used only to open during summer, the Fondation LUMA itself is now open all year round. www.luma-arles.org/en

Modern Art at Fontevraud, Pays de la Loire

A new museum of modern art will open at Fontevraud Abbey in autumn 2019. It will contain major 19th and 20th century works by artists including Corot, Dubuffet, Degas, Toulouse-Lautrec, Derain and Delaunay. Fontevraud is the largest collection of monastic buildings in France, burial place of three English royals – Henry II, Richard the Lionheart and Eleanor of Aquitaine – and today it’s a cultural centre where concerts take place, exhibitions are held, and artists are in residence. There’s also an outdoor cinema. www.fontevraud.fr/en/

Find out more great things going on in France at www.France.fr

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