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France Travel Ideas

In the spirit of travel and wanting to share some of our favorite locations in France. Here are some delightful locations that all have something a bit different to offer.

  1. Lyon is one of our favorites. As the gastronomic capital of France, Lyon is a destination to explore the many food specialties, take a cooking class or even enjoy a day trip outside the city for some wine tasting in the Northern Rhone Valley, Beaujolais or even Burgundy. Lyon also has a Roman history that dates back to 43 BC with Roman structures that are extremely well preserved. Only 2 hours from Paris by train and about an hour to Avignon.
  2. Bordeaux is another incredible food city with spectacular Michelin star and gourmet restaurants which make it an easy choice. Better known for its incredible wines, the area abounds with wine Chateaux to explore. If you have an interest in wine then don’t miss the Cité du Vin wine museum to discover more about wine.
  3. Reims will bring to mind a wonderful glass of Champagne, which is always worth the visit.  You can tour and taste your way through many of the Champagne houses located in Reims and then venture to Epernay or perhaps Ay or Hautvillers to discover more exceptional Champagne houses. Reims is also the home of the Cathedrale Notre Dame de Reims which for more than 1000 years was where the Kings of France were crowned. The cathedral is known for its beautiful stained glass windows and should not be missed.
  4. Strasbourg has a memorable Christmas market filled with wonderful products, specialty food and of course vin chaud (hot mulled wine). You can explore the old town with its narrow streets of half-timbered houses that offer picturesque reflections in the cities many canals. This Alsatian town that borders Germany is also know for its Cathedrale Notre Dame de Strasbourg. This Gothic cathedral has stained glass that dates back to the 13th century, but it also has a very special Astronomical Clock from 1547.
  5. Sarlat la Caneda makes the list with a village dating back to medieval times. It is touristy, but the old town hosts one of our favorite markets on Wednesdays and the most well known market on Saturdays. Sarlat is located in the Dordogne region which is famous for duck, walnuts, foie gras, and truffles.
  6. Saint Jean de Luz is located on the picturesque Basque coast near Spain and is a favorite for Basque food and specialties that will keep you coming back. It is here you will discover a small fishing village that is now a seaside resort with 17th century Basque architecture. The Basque influence is present in Saint Jean de Luz, but also this area of France and into Spain.
  7. Cassis is a favorite and entices us to return again and again. This old town has an amazing harbor area with pastel cafes and restaurants for amazing seafood. It is also the gateway to the Calanques, these scenic limestone cliffs border the coast and are accessed by boat. There is nothing like spending some time on the Mediterranean in this area of France. You can also hike the trails to get a panoramic view of the sea from the top of the Calanques.
  8. Antibes Juan les Pins is another favorite on the Mediterranean Sea and the legendary Côte d’Azur. If the sea, sun and beaches are not enough, of course Antibes Juan les Pins is famous for its incredible annual jazz festival. It also has a wonderful daily Provencal covered market where you can take in the the colors, scents and tastes of Provence while exploring Old Town. While in Antibes, be sure to have some fresh seafood along the port, visit the Picasso museum that is housed in Chateau Grimaldi, take in view from on the peninsula of Saint-Roch from the Fort Carré or enjoy a coastal walk on the path  Sentier de Tirepoil to see the some of the most  beautiful scenery of the Cap d’Antibes.
  9. Moustiers Sainte-Marie This quaint medieval village once know for the famous faience ceramics sits between the rocky hills leading to the Gorges du Verdun. This Provencal village has spectacular natural surroundings and an amazing history dating back to the 5th century. Don’t miss a swim in the nearby Lac de Sainte-Croix or a hike in the Gorges. For an authentic Provencal experience stay at the Alain Ducasse inn, La Bastide de Moustiers.
  10. Le Puy en Velay Coming into Le Puy en Velay, you will get a breathtaking view of the statue of the Virgin Mary that overlooks the town since 1860. The town is also the starting point for many pilgrims walking the Santiago de Compostela pilgrimage trail. The Chemin du Puy route is the most popular route in France and joins the Camino Frances route in Saint Jean Pied de Port.

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