We promise you that there’s more to France than the Eiffel Tower and the confinements of Le Marais. Let us show you.
France is one of the world’s most visited destinations for many reasons. Aside from having some of the world’s most fascinating cities, it has stunning landscapes, from scenic vineyards to spectacular lavender fields and picturesque towns and villages. But with so much to see and explore, it can get overwhelming to decide where to visit. If you need help, check out the top destinations in France you need to visit at least once.
Located along the English Channel and occupying a vast area of northern France, Normandy is renowned for its delicious Camembert cheese, quaint towns and cities, and rich and colourful history. Its beaches are the site of the D-Day invasions that resulted in the death of thousands.
Nowadays, visitors would come to Normandy to discover its famous tourist sites, including the stunning Mont Saint-Michel. Rising majestically from the sea, Mont-Saint-Michel stands as a symbol of French Resistance. The English attacked it during the Hundred Year War but were not successful.
For a peek at Normandy’s history, head to the historic D-Day land beaches, where the largest amphibious invasion happened. Here, you’ll learn more about that fateful day, including the bravery, loss and ensuing freedom that forever changed the course of history.
After visiting some of Normandy’s tourist sites, the best way to relax is to feast on oysters on the beach at Quiberville. The area has a lovely boardwalk, although the highlight of the place is the oyster shack. So, order yourself some oysters along with a glass of champagne.
Image courtesy of Christian Mackie
Provence is a brilliant place in southeast France with narrow winding lanes punctuated with picturesque villages, ancient Roman ruins, and cliffs plunging to the sea. You’ll be spoilt for choice for accommodations since there are numerous lovely rental properties in Provence Alps, perfect for those looking to stay in the area.
The ancient Roman Theatre of Orange should be on top of your list of places to see in Provence. It’s a 200-year-old theatre, considered one of the best-preserved theatres in the world, with a statue of Emperor Augustus looking out at the crowd.
If exploring picturesque villages is your thing, head to Roussillon, a protected town established in 1943. It doesn’t have any modern development, and all you will find are breathtaking landscapes and winding lanes lined with cosy cafes. Roussillon’s picturesque views are due to the colourful ochre cliffs on the town’s south end. The yellow, orange, and red hills are the largest ochre deposits in the world.
The scenic region of Burgundy is another place in France you should see at least once in your life. It’s full of incredible places to explore, beautiful sceneries, and fun things to do. Famous for its breathtaking countryside, rolling hills and vineyards, Burgundy will delight you in many ways.
If you only have time to visit one place in Burgundy, choose Beaune. It’s a charming walled town with numerous things to offer, especially for wine lovers, from exploring wine cellars to indulging in delectable wines.
While in Beaune, do check out the Hospices de Beaune, a historical landmark that’s a must-see for every history buff. Built during the 15th Century, it served as a hospital for the poor and the sick. Nowadays, it serves as a museum, where you can find fascinating displays of medical equipment dating to the Middle Ages.
The Loire Valley
Considered the Cradle of the French Renaissance, the Loire Valley is a picturesque region known for its fresh produce, vibrant wine industry, and majestic châteaux. Located in the middle stretch of the Loire River, the best way to explore the region is on a cruise. It’s one of the top destinations for some luxury river cruising options in France, the perfect way to see more of the top attractions.
As the longest river in Europe, the Loire River flows past numerous castles with hundreds of histories to discover along the journey. Whether cruising the Loire or not, take the time to explore the magnificent chateaux like Château de Chambord, Château de Chenonceau, and Château Royal d’Amboise.
To taste France’s delectable sparkling wine, you should visit some of the best wineries in the Loire Valley, such as the Bouvet-Ladubay, which offers wine-tasting tours and has about ten miles of wine cellars!
With a fascinating mix of breathtaking landscapes, medieval towns, gorgeous islands, and majestic chateaux, Brittany is one of those places you should see in France at least once. Each area in Brittany has its attractions and activities, making it an ideal destination for different kinds of visitors.
The Ille-et-Vilaine department would be an ideal jumping-off point for your tour of Brittany. If you’re an art lover, visit Musée des Beaux-Arts de Rennes, an incredible art museum featuring antiquities from ancient Britain, Greece, and other places. The historic town of Vitré is also a must-see. Stroll through its quaint lanes and check out the delightful buildings, including half-timbered houses.
Another excellent museum in Brittany is the Musée Saint-Nicolas de Vitré, which houses fascinating religious goldsmiths and wall paintings dating back to the 15th Century. Château de Josselin is another attraction to see. It’s a magnificent medieval castle featuring three glorious towers overlooking the scenic Oust River.
Lying along the Mediterranean Sea, Corsica is a small island in southeast France with plenty to offer, from beautiful beaches to fascinating historical sights. You will love its incredible landscapes of stunning gorges, majestic mountains, and cliffs.
The best way to explore Corsica is by car. You can drive around the island and explore its highlights in less than a day. One of the top things to see is Calvi’s walled Haute-Ville, a citadel with three bastions, an elegant Baroque cathedral and a historic house that used to be the residence of Christopher Columbus.
Another highlight of Corsica is Maison Bonaparte, the birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte and where his family lived from 1682 to 1923. As you explore the house, you’ll have a chance to see the room where Napoleon was born.