List of World Heritage Sites in France

This is a list of World Heritage Sites in France with properties of cultural and natural heritage in France as inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List or as on the country's tentative list.[1] France accepted the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage on June 27, 1975, after which it could nominate properties on their territory to be considered for the World Heritage List.[2]

Currently, 44 properties in France are inscribed on the World Heritage List. 39 of these are cultural properties, 4 are natural properties, and 1 is mixed.[1] Three properties are transboundary properties.[3] The first was added to the list in 1979 and the latest in 2015. Five properties were submitted in 1979.[1] The tentative list of France contains 37 properties.[4]

The names in the tables below are the names of the properties as used on the website of UNESCO.[1] There are three different types of properties possible: cultural, natural, and mixed.[5] Selection criteria i, ii, iii, iv, v, and vi are the cultural criteria, and selection criteria vii, viii, ix, and x are the natural criteria.[6] The dates for the properties on the World Heritage List are the dates of inscription, the dates for the tentative list are those of submission. The numbers are the reference numbers as used by UNESCO, and they link directly to the description pages of the properties on the UNESCO website.[1]

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Properties on the World Heritage List

Ref # Site Illustration Region Era Type Year listed Extension Description
230 Abbey Church of Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe Saint-Savin abbaye (1) Nouvelle Aquitaine 9th century cultural 1983 2007


165 Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay Abbaye de Fontenay-EgliseBatiments Bourgogne-Franche-Comté 12th century cultural 1981 2007


164 Arles, Roman and Romanesque Monuments Arles HDR Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur from 1st century BC to 4th century; 12th century cultural 1981 -


84 Vézelay, Church and Hill 00 Basilique Ste-Marie-Madeleine de Vézelay - Tour et côté sud Bourgogne-Franche-Comté 12th century cultural 1979 2007


943 Belfries of Belgium and France Beffroi de Loos (3) Hauts-de-France 13th century-20th century cultural 1999 2005 Transboundary property, shared with Belgium; extension of the former Belfries of Flanders and Wallonia


1256 Bordeaux, Port of the Moon Bordeaux quais 04 Nouvelle Aquitaine 18th century cultural 2007 -


770 Canal du Midi Xvolks canal du midi 01 Occitanie 17th century cultural 1996 -


162 Amiens Cathedral Amiens cathedral 030 Hauts-de-France 13th century cultural 1981 -


635 Bourges Cathedral Kathedrale Bourges v2 Centre-Val de Loire 13th century cultural 1992 -


81 Chartres Cathedral France Eure et Loir Chartres Cathedrale nuit 02 Centre-Val de Loire 13th century cultural 1979 -


601 Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Former Abbey of Saint-Remi, and Palace of Tau, Reims Chevet cathédrale Reims Grand Est 13th–16th century cultural 1991 -


1153 The Causses and the Cévennes, Mediterranean agro-pastoral Cultural Landscape Cevennes Florac Mimente depuis Causse Mejean Occitanie cultural 2011 -


228 Historical centre of Avignon: Papal Palace, Episcopal Ensemble and Avignon Bridge Avignon, Palais des Papes depuis Tour Philippe le Bel by JM Rosier Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur 12th–16th century cultural 1995 - Palais des Papes, Episcopal Ensemble and Pont Saint-Bénezet


868 Routes of Santiago de Compostela in France Saint-Gorgon 017 Diverse sites (right-of-way and route) cultural 1998 -


1337 Episcopal City of Albi Albi01 Occitanie cultural 2010 -


203 From the Great Saltworks of Salins-les-Bains to the Royal Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans, the Production of Open-pan Salt France arc et senas saline royal main building 1 Bourgogne-Franche-Comté 18th century cultural 1982 2009


1283 Fortifications of Vauban Citadelle Besançon Diverse 17th century cultural 2008 -


932 Jurisdiction of Saint-Émilion Saint emilion014 Nouvelle Aquitaine cultural 1999 -


1181 Le Havre, the City Rebuilt by Auguste Perret LeHavre Normandy 20th century cultural 2005 - Built from 1945–1964 by the Atelier de Reconstruction du Havre d'Auguste Perret


80 Mont Saint-Michel and its Bay MSM sunset 02 Normandy cultural 1979 2007


160 Palace and Park of Fontainebleau Fontainebleau with gardens Île-de-France cultural 1981 -


83 Palace and Park of Versailles Versailles chateau Île-de-France cultural 1979 2007


600 Paris, Banks of the Seine The Seine as seen from the Eiffel Tower, June 2002 Île-de-France cultural 1991 -


229 Place Stanislas, Place de la Carrière, and Place d'Alliance in Nancy France Nancy Place Stanislas nuit Grand Est 18th century cultural 1983 -


334 Pont du Gard (Roman Aqueduct) Pontdugard Occitanie 1st century AD cultural 1985 2007


873 Provins, Town of Medieval Fairs Fortifications ouest2 provins Île-de-France cultural 2001 -


872 Historic site of Lyon Vieuxlyon saintjean toits Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes cultural 1998 -


1363 Prehistoric pile dwellings around the Alps D-BW-Uhldingen-Mühlhofen - Pfahlbaumuseum - Haus Schussenried Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes 5000–500 BCE cultural 2011 - A series of prehistoric pile-dwelling (or stilt house) settlements in and around the Alps. transboundary property, shared with Austria, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, Switzerland, 11 of the total 111 sites are in France.


85 Prehistoric Sites and Decorated Caves of the Vézère Valley Lascaux painting Nouvelle Aquitaine cultural 1979 -


495 StrasbourgGrande Île and Neustadt Absolute ponts couverts 02 Grand Est cultural 1988 -


163 Roman Theatre and its Surroundings and the "Triumphal Arch" of Orange Le Théâtre Antique d'Orange, 2007 Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur cultural 1981 2007


933 The Loire Valley between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes Centre-Val de Loire, Pays de la Loire cultural 2000 - An outstanding cultural landscape of great beauty, containing historic towns and villages, great architectural monuments (the châteaux), and cultivated lands formed by many centuries of interaction between their population and the physical environment, primarily the river Loire itself.


345 Historic Fortified City of Carcassonne Carcassonne JPG01 Occitanie cultural 1997 -


258 Gulf of Porto: Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Reserve 0 Scandola Osani JPG01 Corsica N/A natural 1983 -


1115 Lagoons of New Caledonia: Reef Diversity and Associated Ecosystems Ouvea Falaises de Lekini New Caledonia N/A natural 2008 - Diversity of ecosystems in New Caledonia Barrier Reef


1317 The Pitons, Cirques and Remparts of Réunion Island Piton des neiges vu de la plaine des cafres Réunion N/A natural 2010 -


773 PyrénéesMont Perdu Gavarnie recti small Wikimedia Commons Occitanie N/A mixed 1997 1999 Transboundary property, shared with Spain


1360 Nord-Pas de Calais Mining Basin Wallers - Fosse Arenberg, les trois chevalements (E) Hauts-de-France 18th to 20th centuries cultural 2012 - Remarkable landscape shaped by three centuries of coal extraction.


1426 Decorated Cave of Pont d’Arc, known as Grotte Chauvet-Pont d’Arc, Ardèche Paintings from the Chauvet cave (museum replica) Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes 30,000–28,000 BCE cultural 2014 - Earliest-known and best-preserved figurative drawings in the world.


1425 The Climats, terroirs of Burgundy Frankreich-Burgund-Weinberg direkt bei Beaune Bourgogne-Franche-Comté Middle Ages–present cultural 2015 - An outstanding example of grape cultivation and wine production developed since the High Middle Ages.


1465 Champagne Hillsides, Houses and Cellars A village with vineyards in Champagne, France 1987 Grand Est 17th century–present cultural 2015 - Sites where the method of producing sparkling wines was developed.


1321 The Architectural Work of Le Corbusier, an Outstanding Contribution to the Modern Movement VillaSavoye Nouvelle Aquitaine, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Île-de-France, Grand Est, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes 20th century cultural 2016 - Testimonial to the invention of a new architectural language. A transnational serial property shared with Argentina, Belgium, Germany, India, Japan and Switzerland.


1528 Taputapuātea Taputapu marae Raiatea little man French Polynesia 10th century cultural 2017 A Polynesian political, ceremonial and funerary centre.


1434 Chaine des PuysLimagne fault tectonic arena Come pariou Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes natural 2018 A geologically important site illustrating the process of continental rifting.


Properties submitted on the Tentative List

Property names as submitted by France and year of inscription on Tentative List. Translation of site names provided in italics for reference purposes; official translation of site name proposed only once site is put forward for consideration on World Heritage List.

Location of inscribed sites

Location of French World Heritage sites overseas

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e France. UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Retrieved on 2014-06-23.
  2. ^ State Parties, UNESCO World Heritage Centre, Retrieved on 2011-07-21
  3. ^ Pyrénées–Mont Perdu is shared with Spain; Belfries of Belgium and France is shared with Belgium; and Prehistoric Pile dwellings around the Alps is shared with Austria, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, and Switzerland.
  4. ^ Tentative Lists, UNESCO World Heritage Centre, Retrieved on 2014-06-23
  5. ^ France's mixed property, Pyrénées – Mont Perdu, is shared with Spain.
  6. ^ The Criteria, UNESCO World Heritage Centre, Retrieved on 2011-07-21
  7. ^ "Abbaye de Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe". UNESCO.
  8. ^ "Abbaye cistercienne de Fontenay". UNESCO.
  9. ^ "Arles, monuments romains et romans". UNESCO.
  10. ^ "Basilique et colline de Vézelay". UNESCO.
  11. ^ "Beffries of Belgium and France". UNESCO.
  12. ^ "Bordeaux, Port de la Lune". UNESCO.
  13. ^ "Canal du Midi". UNESCO.
  14. ^ "Cathédrale d'Amiens". UNESCO.
  15. ^ "Cathédrale de Bourges". UNESCO.
  16. ^ "Cathédrale de Chartres". UNESCO.
  17. ^ "Cathédrale Notre-Dame, ancienne abbaye Saint-Rémi et palais de Tau, Reims". UNESCO.
  18. ^ "The Causses and the Cévennes, Mediterranean agro-pastoral Cultural Landscape". UNESCO.
  19. ^ "Centre historique d'Avignon". UNESCO.
  20. ^ "Chemins de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle en France". UNESCO.
  21. ^ "Cité épiscopale d'Albi". UNESCO.
  22. ^ "De la grande saline de Salins-les-Bains à la saline royale d'Arc-et-Senans, la production du sel ignigène". UNESCO.
  23. ^ "Fortifications de Vauban". UNESCO.
  24. ^ "Juridiction de Saint-Émilion". UNESCO.
  25. ^ "Le Havre, la ville reconstruite par Auguste Perret". UNESCO.
  26. ^ "Mont-Saint-Michel et sa baie". UNESCO.
  27. ^ "Palais et parc de Fontainebleau". UNESCO.
  28. ^ "Palais et parc de Versailles". UNESCO.
  29. ^ "Paris, rives de la Seine". UNESCO.
  30. ^ "Places Stanislas, de la Carrière et d'Alliance à Nancy". UNESCO.
  31. ^ "Pont du Gard". UNESCO.
  32. ^ "Provins, ville de foire médiévale". UNESCO.
  33. ^ "Site historique de Lyon". UNESCO.
  34. ^ "Et le nombre de sites du Patrimoine de l'Unesco est..." UNESCO.
  35. ^ "Sites préhistoriques et grottes ornées de la vallée de la Vézère". UNESCO.
  36. ^ "Strasbourg – Grande île". UNESCO.
  37. ^ "Théâtre antique et ses abords et " Arc de Triomphe " d'Orange". UNESCO.
  38. ^ "Val de Loire entre Sully-sur-Loire et Chalonnes". UNESCO.
  39. ^ "Ville fortifiée historique de Carcassonne". UNESCO.
  40. ^ "Golfe de Porto". UNESCO.
  41. ^ "Lagons de Nouvelle-Calédonie". UNESCO.
  42. ^ "Pitons, cirques et remparts de l'ile de la Réunion". UNESCO.
  43. ^ "Pyrénées–Mont Perdu". UNESCO.
  44. ^ "Nord-Pas de Calais Mining Basin". UNESCO.
  45. ^ "Decorated Cave of Pont d'Arc, known as Grotte Chauvet-Pont d'Arc, Ardèche". UNESCO.
  46. ^ a b World Heritage Committee. "Sites in Denmark, France and Turkey inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List". United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. Retrieved 2015-07-20.
  47. ^ "The Architectural Work of Le Corbusier, an Outstanding Contribution to the Modern Movement". UNESCO.
  48. ^ "Taputapuātea". UNESCO.
  49. ^ "Chaine des Puys – Limagne fault tectonic arena". UNESCO.
  50. ^ A transboundary site with Italy. Replaces "Mercantour / Alpi Marittime" Tentative List property (reference 1650).
  51. ^ "Official Metz's UNESCO application" (PDF) (in French). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-02-01. Retrieved March 2014. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  52. ^ A transboundary site with Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom.
  53. ^ Centre, UNESCO World Heritage. "Les Alpes de la Méditerranée – UNESCO World Heritage Centre". Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  54. ^ Centre, UNESCO World Heritage. "Nice, la ville neuve née du tourisme, ou l'invention de la Riviera – UNESCO World Heritage Centre". Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  55. ^ Centre, UNESCO World Heritage. "Cité de Carcassonne et ses châteaux sentinelles de montagne – UNESCO World Heritage Centre". Retrieved 2018-01-08.
Château d'Azay-le-Rideau

The Château d'Azay-le-Rideau (pronounced [azɛ lə ʁido]) is located in the town of Azay-le-Rideau in the French département of Indre-et-Loire. Built between 1518 and 1527, this château is considered one of the foremost examples of early French renaissance architecture. Set on an island in the middle of the Indre river, this picturesque château has become one of the most popular of the châteaux of the Loire valley.

Culture of France

The culture of France has been shaped by geography, by profound historical events, and by foreign and internal forces and groups. France, and in particular Paris, has played an important role as a center of high culture since the 17th century and from the 19th century on, worldwide. From the late 19th century, France has also played an important role in cinema, fashion, cuisine, literature, technology, social science and mathematics. The importance of French culture has waxed and waned over the centuries, depending on its economic, political and military importance. French culture today is marked both by great regional and socioeconomic differences and strong unifying tendencies. A global opinion poll for the BBC saw France ranked as the country with the fourth most positive influence in the world (behind Germany, Canada and the UK) in 2014.

List of World Heritage Sites in Western Europe

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has designated 132 World Heritage Sites in Western Europe. These sites are located in 9 countries (also called "state parties"); France and Germany are home to the most with 37 and 43, while Liechtenstein and Monaco have no sites. There are ten sites which are shared between state parties both in and out of Western Europe. The first site from the region to be included on the list was the Aachen Cathedral in Germany in 1978, the year of the list's conception.Each year, UNESCO's World Heritage Committee may inscribe new sites on the list, or delist sites that no longer meet the criteria. Selection is based on ten criteria: six for cultural heritage (i–vi) and four for natural heritage (vii–x). Some sites, designated "mixed sites," represent both cultural and natural heritage. In Western Europe, there are 121 cultural, 9 natural, and 2 mixed sites.The World Heritage Committee may also specify that a site is endangered, citing "conditions which threaten the very characteristics for which a property was inscribed on the World Heritage List." Presently, none of the sites in Western Europe are currently listed as endangered, though two German sites were previously listed: the Cologne Cathedral was marked as endangered in 2004 due to the construction of several high-rise buildings around it, but it was removed from the list in 2006; and the Dresden Elbe Valley site was listed in 2006 in hopes of halting the construction of the four lane Waldschlösschen Bridge through the valley. When construction continued as planned, it became the second site to be delisted as a World Heritage in 2009, the first being Oman's Arabian Oryx Sanctuary two years earlier.

List of heritage registers

This list is of heritage registers, inventories of cultural properties, natural and man-made, tangible and intangible, movable and immovable, that are deemed to be of sufficient heritage value to be separately identified and recorded. In many instances the pages linked below have as their primary focus the registered assets rather than the registers themselves. Where a particular article or set of articles on a foreign-language Wikipedia provides fuller coverage, a link is provided.

Lists of World Heritage Sites

This is a list of lists of World Heritage Sites. A World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as having special cultural or physical significance.


The Lumières (literally in English: Enlighteners) was a cultural, philosophical, literary and intellectual movement of the second half of the 18th century, originating in France and spreading throughout Europe. It included philosophers such as Baruch Spinoza, John Locke, Pierre Bayle and Isaac Newton. Over time it came to mean the Siècle des Lumières, in English the Age of Enlightenment.Members of the movement saw themselves as a progressive élite, and battled against religious and political persecution, fighting against what they saw as the irrationality, arbitrariness, obscurantism and superstition of the previous centuries. They redefined the study of knowledge to fit the ethics and aesthetics of their time. Their works had great influence at the end of the 18th century, in the American Declaration of Independence and the French Revolution.This intellectual and cultural renewal by the Lumières movement was, in its strictest sense, limited to Europe, and was almost exclusively a development of the ideas of Renaissance humanism. These ideas were well understood in Europe, but beyond France the idea of "enlightenment" had generally meant a light from outside, whereas in France it meant a light coming from within oneself.

In the most general terms, in science and philosophy, the Enlightenment aimed for the triumph of reason over faith and belief; in politics and economics, the triumph of the bourgeois over nobility and clergy.

Monument historique

Monument historique (French: [mɔnymɑ̃ istɔʁik]) is a designation given to some national heritage sites in France. It may also refer to the state procedure in France by which National Heritage protection is extended to a building, a specific part of a building, a collection of buildings, garden, bridge, or other structure, because of their importance to France's architectural and historical cultural heritage. Both public and privately owned structures may be listed in this way, as well as movable objects. As of 2012 there were 44,236 monuments listed.

Buildings may be given the classification for both their exteriors or interiors, including a building's décor, its furniture, a single room, or even a staircase. An example is the Monument Historique classification of the décor in the café "Deux Garçons" in Aix-en-Provence whose patrons once included Alphonse de Lamartine, Émile Zola and Paul Cézanne. Some buildings are designated because of their connection to a single personality, such as the Auberge Ravoux in Auvers-sur-Oise which is designated an MH because of its connection to the painter Vincent van Gogh. Since the 1990s, a significant number of places have been given the designation because of their historical importance to science.

The MH designation traces its roots to the French Revolution when the government appointed Alexandre Lenoir to specify and safeguard certain structures. Though the first classifications were given in the 19th century by the writer Prosper Mérimée, inspector-general of historical monuments, by a first list established in 1840. In 1851, Mérimée organized the Missions Héliographiques to document France's medieval architecture.

A "monument historique" may be marked by the official logo of the Union REMPART, a French historical restoration association. It consists of a design representing the labyrinth that used to be in Reims Cathedral, which is itself a World Heritage Site. Use of the logo is optional.

Tourism in France

Tourism in France directly contributed 77.7 billion euros to gross domestic product, 30% of which comes from international visitors and 70% from domestic tourism spending. The total contribution of travel and tourism represents 9.7% of GDP and supports 2.9 million jobs (10.9% of employment) in the country. Tourism contributes significantly to the balance of payments.

France was visited by 85.7 million foreign tourists in 2013, making it the most popular tourist destination in the world. France ranks fifth in tourist spending behind the United Kingdom, United States, China and Spain.France has 37 sites inscribed in the UNESCO's World Heritage List and features cities or sites of high cultural interest (Paris being the foremost, but also Loire Valley, Toulouse, Strasbourg, Bordeaux, Lyon, and others), beaches and seaside resorts, ski resorts, and rural regions that many enjoy for their beauty and tranquillity (green tourism). Small and picturesque French villages of quality heritage (such as Collonges-la-Rouge, Locronan, or Montsoreau) are promoted through the association Les Plus Beaux Villages de France (literally "The Most Beautiful Villages of France"). The "Remarkable Gardens" label is a list of the over two hundred gardens classified by the French Ministry of Culture. This label is intended to protect and promote remarkable gardens and parks.

Northern Europe
Western Europe
Eastern Europe
Southern Europe

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