France (officially the French Republic) is a country located in Western Europe. Here are some fun facts about France.
- The most popular sports in France are football (soccer), rugby league and rugby union. Handball and basketball are also popular in many parts of France.
- Well known sporting events held annually in France are the Tour de France (the best known road bicycle race in the world) and the French Open (one of the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments)
- French literature is very popular and well known. Charles Perrault was one of France’s most influential children’s writers. He wrote books such as Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Puss in Boots.
- The French healthcare system was ranked number one in the world back in 1997. Average life expectancy in France is currently 79.73 years.
- 54% of French people identify themselves as being Christians, while 31% of people stated that they were not religious. Islam, Buddhism and Judaism are all practised by a minority (just over 1%) of the population
- It is estimated that there are between 200,000 and 1 million illegal immigrants in France
- France has an estimated population of 64.5 million, making it the 19th largest country (in terms of population) in the world.
- France is the most popular tourist destination in the world. Nearly 82 million people traveled to France for holidays in 2007. Spain was the second most popular tourist destination with 58.5 million visitors.
- In 2004, only 68.8% of French people aged 15-64 were working. This is a major contributor to the relatively low GDP per capita in France compared with the United States.
- France has the most extensive railway system in Western Europe. High speed trains traveling at up to 320 km/h (200mph) are used by commercial rail companies.
- France has a civil legal system. This means that the law arises from statues and judges can only interpret this law (they are not to make law). England (the United Kingdom), the United States, Australia and Canada all have common law systems. This means that judges make (or declare) the law, as well as interpret statutes. In common law systems, judges are bound to follow previous decisions in the same way (hence, the name ‘common’ law).
Hope you enjoyed those fun facts about France.