10 Facts About France You Probably Didn’t Know

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

1) How many three-star Michelin star restaurants are in France?

Twenty-five, which is quite a few, but is surprisingly only second. The country with the most: Japan  with 29.

2) How many foreign visitors traveled to France in 2011?

76.8 million visitors, making it the most-visited country in the world, with the U.S. coming in a second at 59.75 million.

3) What U.S. state is closest in size to France?

France is roughly the same size as Texas. In fact, Texas is actually slightly larger (268,58 square miles to France’s 260,558).

4) What is the most-visited site in France (paid entry)?

Sorry to have to break this to you, but the answer — embarrassingly enough — is Eurodisney with 14.5 million visitors last year. The Louvre came in second with 8.3 million visitors.

5) Which city has the most French speakers?

Not surprisingly the answer is Paris. What is surprising are the runner-ups. Nope, not Lyon or Marseille. The second-most French-speaking city in the world is Kinhshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, followed up by Montreal, Canada.

6) How many liters of wine does the average resident of France drink?

The per capita consumption of wine in France is 45.32 liters, which is actually down 14% from 2006. That’s roughly 60 bottles per year, or one bottle of wine ever six days. (France is actually second in this category, next to Luxembourg at 54.29.)

7) How often do the French have sex?

According to Durex (a reliable source if there ever was one), 70% of adults have sex weekly. Not bad, but Greece has them beat at 87%.

8) How French is France?

France is experiencing one of the most diverse moments in its history with 4.9 million foreign-born immigrants currently living there right now (8.1% of the country’s population). Recent immigrants and their offspring (foreign-born + first and second generations of immigrants) make up over 10% of the population of France, including 8.7% of Muslims.

9) What is France’s biggest company?

Forget haute couture and wine production, France’s largest companies are dominated by energy and finance, with Total coming in at first, with AXA, BNP Paribas, Carrefour, and GDF Suez rounding out the top five.

10) What was the most popular movie in France in the last five years?

2008’s Bienvenue chez les Ch’tis (Welcome to the Sticks) racked up $193 million dollars, making it the most popular movie in France in the last five years, edging out Avatar, which made $158 million.

By Matt Stabile



Matt Stabile Bio PictureMatt Stabile is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheExpeditioner.com. You can read his writings, watch his travel videos, purchase the book he co-edited or contact him via email at any time at TheExpeditioner.com. (@TheExpeditioner)

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