Where to Watch the 2024 Paris Olympic Torch Relay Around France



Where to Watch the 2024 Paris Olympic Torch Relay Around France

The Olympics are coming to France, and the relay route for the Olympic Torch kicks off in Marseille on May 8th 2024. Travelling through all 13 French regions and some overseas territories, it will arrive in Paris on July 26th in time for the grand Opening Ceremony. Here’s how and where to see the Olympic Torch en route to Paris.

The history of the Olympic Torch

The Olympic Games were founded in Ancient Greece, and the ancient games date back to the eighth century BC to the fourth century AD. Legend has it that Heracles established the tradition of holding the games every four years. The first modern Olympic Games took place in Athens in 1896, and the Games have evolved to include the Winter Olympics, Paralympics, and Youth Olympics.

The Torch

The Olympic Torch was first used at the Summer Olympics of 1936, and it was, in fact, created by the Nazi propaganda machine to assist in showcasing the power of the Reich. However, the post-war 1948 Olympics kept the Olympic torch to symbolise a relay of “peace” and “friendship” throughout war-ravaged Europe. The design of the torch changes each year.

The Olympic Torch 2024: an epic journey by land and sea

The torch was lit on April 16th 2024, by “the sun’s rays” in a ceremony in Olympia, Greece, home to the ancient Olympic Games. The torch then headed to Athens, from where it will sail across the sea to Marseille on France’s south coast – arriving on May 8th.

From there, the torch relay passes through an incredible 68 stages, passing through all of France’s 13 metropolitan regions, and past numerous iconic landmarks and important historical sites. The torch will pass by the Palace of Versailles, the city of Carcassonne, the D-Day Landing beaches, the Chateaux of the Loire, and the medieval city of Carcassonne.

Even more exciting, it will not only sail across the Mediterranean to reach its starting point in Marseille, but it will also cross the Atlantic, the Indian Ocean, and the Pacific to visit six French overseas territories – Guadeloupe, Guyana, Martinique, French Polynesia, New Caledonia and Reunion Island.

Where will the torch pass near you?

The Olympic Torch is set to travel all around France, and various local festivities and events are set to take place to welcome it. In our own beautiful part of the Charente, the Olympic flame will be only 15 minutes away from us here in La Grue at our local historic Roman Amphitheatre, Les Bouchauds, on May 24th.

It will go to Ruffec and Angouleme, which will be the last stop for the Olympic flame in our department. It will also set sail on board a traditional ‘Cabare’ riverboat, which was used to transport goods along the Charente and be at Le Parvis des Chais Magelis for all the celebrations to take place.

This is such a special event, why don’t you take a look to see where the Olympic torch relay will take place near you? Follow the torch relay and find out about local events here.

Bonne fête!

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Carol, a teacher from Hurworth in Darlington, lives in Charente in South-West France, where she runs La Grue Gites with her family.

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