Abstract A new compilation of heat flow density data was made in the framework of the “Geothermal Atlas of Europe”. This work uses oil exploration data and classical measurements. The consistency between the two sets of data is briefly discussed and a heat flow density map of France is compiled using all available data (oil exploration data, classical measurements and data from neighbouring countries). The main trends of heat flow density are discussed in relation to the geological and geodynamic setting of the various areas. The high heat flow density values (100–110 mW m −2) observed over the Rhine graben in the northeastern part of France, the Massif Central and in the Provençal Basin in the southern part of France seem to be directly connected with the post-Oligocene rifting activity. The mantle heat flow ranges between 20–25 mW m −2 in stable Hercynian provinces (Brittany and Maures Estérel) and 50–60 mW m −2 in the rift zones.