Oh La La! Bastille Day in the Bay Area

July 14 is an important and highly celebrated national holiday in France called Bastille Day, or la fête nationale (meaning “the national celebration”). July 14, 2024, marks 235 years since the storming of the Bastille in 1789, an event that opened the gates for the French Revolution. 

The Bastille was a fortress and prison in Paris used to detain citizens and political prisoners. It also represented the tyrannical rule of the Bourbon Monarchy. In 1789, a swarm of civilians crowded the Bastille, demanding possession of the weaponry stored in the Bastille. When they were denied, the citizens stormed the Bastille. 

This moment marked the beginning of the French Revolution, making it a day of celebration and commemoration for France. 2024’s Bastille Day celebrations are extra special, as they will mark 235 years since those French citizens stormed the Bastille.

Here are some fun ways to experience the merriment and celebrations without traveling overseas.

Bastille Day Celebration at Left Bank

Left Bank Brasserie Larkspur

507 Magnolia Ave, Larkspur

Join the rowdy festivities at Left Bank Brasserie in Larkspur for their annual Bastille Day celebration! Enjoy a special weekend menu with additions like coq au vin or chocolate éclairs, and be transported to France with live music and Parisian decor.

Bastille Day at Petite Left Bank

Sunday, July 14

Petite Left Bank

1696 Tiburon Blvd, Tiburon 

Petite Left Bank celebrates Bastille Day on Sunday with live music, oyster shucking, and more. Additionally, Tiburon’s go-to spot for French cuisine will have a special menu for the entire weekend featuring staples such as coq au vin and chilled melon soup as “Plats de la Révolution.” 

Bastille on Belden

Friday, July 12

4:30–9:30 p.m.

Belden Place, San Francisco

San Francisco’s Belden Place is an alleyway with a history of French inhabitants, making it the perfect place to commemorate the holiday. With its European charm and special Bastille Day discounts from the street’s restaurants, Belden Place is the place for a night full of French festivities and fun.

Bastille Day SF Festival

Saturday, July 13

11 a.m.–5 p.m., Dance Party at 7 p.m.

SF Design Center Galleria

At the beautiful SF Design Center Galleria, celebrate Bastille Day with a plethora of food, wine, culture and music. With an additional theme of “Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience” and celebrations for the 2024 Paris Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games underway, this year’s Bastille Day SF Festival may be the best yet. Plus, there’s a dance party to top it off at the end!

Bardot a Go Go’s Bastille Day Bash at Rickshaw Stop

Saturday, July 13

9 p.m.

155 Fell Street, San Francisco

Wanting to party at a Parisian disco but can’t find time for Paris this summer? Bardot a Go Go’s Bastille Day Bash has got you covered with a ‘60s French pop disco dance party with music from Brigitte Bardot, Serge Gainsbourg, Jacques Dutronc, Francoise Hardy and DJ Brother Grimm.  

If you are looking to just dine somewhere local but festive for the holiday, look no further than these Marin French restaurants.