Heatwave warnings were in place for more of the country on Monday afternoon as the mercury began to rise and the latest canicule (heatwave) took hold.
In all some 59 départements had Orange alerts in place – the second highest warning level – by Monday afternoon, including the whole of the south west, central France, the Paris region and the east of the country (see map below).
The country's weather service Météo France said that temperatures in the south west had risen by 10C since Sunday and the warm front had reached central and northern areas.
Temperatures will reach over 40C in many parts of the country over the coming days.
Temperatures in the south west were forecast to edge up towards 40C on Monday but Wednesday and Thursday look like being the hottest days across the country.
On Monday Paris activated its heatwave plan which meant a closer eye is kept on vulnerable people, including the elderly and the homeless, while “cool rooms” such as public buildings are opened up to members of the public.
It is likely that the country's weather agency Météo France will issue more heatwave alerts for other parts of the country throughout the week.
“Thursday (July 25) will be a potentially historically hot day,” said François Jobard a forecaster from Météo France.”We are forecasting 41 or 42 degrees in Paris on Thursday and there is the strong chance of beating the record,” he added.
The highest ever temperature recorded in Paris was 40.4 degrees Celsius (104.7 degrees Fahrenheit) in 1947. Since records began in 1873, this was the only time a plus-40 temperature was recorded in the French capital, he said.
Other French cities could also see their all time records tumble on Thursday including Reims, Bourges, Lille and Clermont Ferrand, he said.
Map: Météo France
As ever the canicule (heatwave) warning issued by Météo France brings with it advice for members of the public.
People, especially the elderly and most vulnerable, are advised to spend as much of the day as possible in a cool place, avoid going outside when the day is at its hottest and drink water regularly.
Météo France also issues the following advice.