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France

Unveiling the Beauty: A Journey Through History and Elegance

France, a country that needs no introduction, is a timeless mosaic of art, architecture, and scenic landscapes. From the iconic Eiffel Tower standing proudly against the Parisian skyline to the lavender fields of Provence swaying in the gentle breeze, each corner of this country invites exploration, promising an experience that transcends the ordinary.

Whether you’re an art aficionado, a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or a gastronomic adventurer, France unfolds its treasures in a way that caters to every traveler’s passion.

Where, What and How?

Accommodation – Whether you’re seeking luxury, charm, or budget-friendly stays, France has something for everyone. Hotels in France often reflect the country’s rich history and culture, with some housed in historic buildings or offering stunning views of iconic landmarks.

Food – France is renowned as a culinary paradise, celebrated for its exquisite cuisine, fine wines, and rich gastronomic traditions. From boulangeries and patisseries to cafés and brasseries. Each region of France boasts its own culinary specialties and flavors. In Provence, savor traditional dishes like ratatouille (a vegetable stew), bouillabaisse (fish stew), and tapenade (olive paste). In Normandy, enjoy creamy Camembert cheese, fresh oysters from Cancale, and apple-based desserts like Tarte Tatin.

Transportation – France has an extensive and reliable rail network operated by SNCF. The TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse) is France’s high-speed train service, connecting major cities like Paris, Lyon, Marseille, and Bordeaux. Major cities in France, including Paris, Lyon, Marseille, and Lille, have efficient metro systems that provide easy access to attractions, neighborhoods, and suburbs. But if you really want to discover the Heart of france and leave behind the crowds, I recommend you to rent a car.

My favorites

Visit Paris: The capital of the most visited country in the world is a must. This city is much more than a picnic under the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, watching the sunset from Montmartre or a picture with Arc de Triomphe. Everytime that I visit Paris I try to avoid those places. Instead I enjoyed (much more) walking through Quartier latin or visiting the astonishing Catacombs of Paris.

Amazing Normandy: This area in the North of France has a lot to offer but here are my three favorite places. The first is Honfleur, a picturesque medieval town with a beautiful port. In second place comes Étretat with its breathtaking cliffs. And finally, what in my opinion is the most fantastic place in France, Le Mont-Saint-Michel.

French Alps: This mountain range hides a lot of beautiful places. One of my favorites is Annecy, where I have been several times. This medieval town is the perfect place to stay, either you go in winter for skiing or you want to refresh yourself in the lake in summer. If you are an adventurer and you are planning to climb Mont Blanc, do not miss the picturesque Chamonix!

Explore Nîmes: Few places in Europe contain so many Roman ruins so well preserved as Nimes. This beautiful town left me wanting to come back. Very close to Nîmes, just half an hour drive to the North is Pont du Gard. This is not only an amazing and well preserved Roman Aqueduct but it is also a monument in the middle of an incredible landscape.

Discover Loire valley: This UNESCO World Heritage Site invites travelers to step into a fairytale-like setting, where historic castles dot the countryside and the tranquil Loire River meanders through lush greenery. I enjoyed my time in Orleans where I visited the house of Jeanne d’Arc or its astonishing cathedral.

Bordeaux: This vibrant metropolis is the capital of the renowned Bordeaux wine region, known for its world-class vineyards and prestigious wine estates. Beyond its vineyards, Bordeaux boasts stunning 18th-century architecture, picturesque squares, and a lively culinary scene. In my road trips from The Netherlands to Bask Country, this city is always a mandatory stop for me.

Medieval Carcassonne: This is my favorite town in France by far. The perfectly kept castle gave it a well deserved title of the best preserved medieval town in Europe. When I was walking through the narrow streets inside the castle I felt like I was inside a fantastic tale.

French Basque Country: This is a totally different region of France with a unique culture and language. The picturesque coastal towns of Donibane Lohizune (Saint-Jean-de-Luz) and Biarritz are a good example of Bask architecture. The city of Baiona hosts in July one of the most famous parties on both sides of the frontier. I used to visit this area (aka Iparralde, in Bask) every year.

Money Saving Tips

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Book Flights Early If flying to France, book your flights well in advance to secure lower fares. Use flight comparison websites to find the best deals and consider flying mid-week for potentially cheaper rates.
2
Stay in Budget Accommodations Look for budget-friendly accommodations such as hostels, guesthouses, and budget hotels. Websites like Booking.com and Airbnb often have options to fit any budget.
3
Menu du jour Many restaurants in France offer a fixed-price lunch menu that is often more affordable than dinner. This is a great way to enjoy a sit-down meal at a restaurant without the high evening prices.
4
City Passes Consider purchasing city passes like the Paris Pass or Lyon City Card, which offer discounts on attractions, transportation, and sometimes skip-the-line access.
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