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10 random things about France


  1. The French republic has changed its constitutions 5 times. Each time the constitution changed, the republic changed too. France is therefore in its 5th republic. The current constitution was put into effect in 1958.
  2. The 10 biggest cities in France, in terms of population, are Paris, Marseille, Lyon, Toulouse, Nice, Nantes, Strasbourg, Montpellier, Bordeaux, Lille. Lists differ depending on whether you count the suburbs or not.
  3. In France, most people eat bread with every meal (and our bread is very unlike what is called ‘French bread’ in the USA).
  4. France has the biggest sand dune in Europe, it is called the “Dune du Pyla” (also spelled Pila, Pilat, and Pylat). It is located in the Southwest of France, near Arcachon.
  5. Minivans are a French invention. They were first manufactured by Renault, one of the three big French car companies.
  6. The French presidential term is 5 years. The next presidential election is in April of 2012.
  7. In France, there is a law saying that anybody can walk all along the coasts, making it impossible to fully own a beach to the ocean. There are some private beaches though, but they just mean you’re not allowed to stay on them, but you are technically allowed to cross them, regardless of all the signs telling you otherwise.
  8. The roofs of houses have a different slope depending on the region (the snowier the region, the steeper the roof).
  9. In France, even private schools are in a big part funded by the government
  10. France had a high unemployment rate (about 10%) for decades, even before the economic crisis.

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