Rest in France: popular resorts.
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France´s best resorts
Elegant and forever young France attracts travelers at any time of the year with its unique charm and historical monuments created in different eras. It attracts travelers who want to relax on the beautiful beaches of the Cote d’Azur and ski lovers to ski in the French Alps. The country is visited by lovers of family holidays and sightseeing tourism, many couples in love choose it for their wedding trip. Among the many options for recreation at the best resorts in France, each traveler will be able to find the best routes for a comfortable stay.
Sprawling on the banks of the Seine River, the luxurious and multifaceted Paris is the capital of France and impresses everyone who has been here at least once. It has everything that travelers can dream of – a relaxed atmosphere, numerous historical sites, excellent shopping, exquisite French cuisine and entertainment for all tastes.
Territorially Paris, which occupies the first place in the ranking of resorts in France, is divided into 20 districts with varying degrees of importance – in some interesting to walk the streets and admire the architectural monuments, others are quiet corners for a comfortable stay. Today it entered the top five most visited cities in the world.
Excursion tours to the capital of the country – a great opportunity to wander through the Latin Quarter, see the Eiffel Tower, which is the symbol of the city and France, to visit the Louvre and admire the charming smile of Joconde. Curious travelers can see the pearl of Gothic architecture – Notre Dame de Paris known as Notre Dame de Paris, or visit the bohemian Montmartre and drink delicious coffee in a small restaurant, where Van Gogh and Picasso once visited.
Ile de France
The Ile-de-France region of Paris is a historic region in the heart of France, encompassing charming Paris and its surrounding areas with magnificent palaces, romantic and lush parks, residences of French kings, and Gothic basilicas and abbeys. Many architectural monuments on both banks of the majestic Seine, which are on the territory of the region, are included in the list of UNESCO cultural heritage sites.
These include the majestic Versailles palace and park complex, the Benedictine abbey of Saint-Denis and the tomb of kings in the northern suburbs, the sumptuous royal residence of Fontainebleau and the medieval town of Provence. The famous Vaux-le-Vicomte palace, built during the reign of King Louis XIV, is also located in the suburbs of the capital.
Choosing in the description of resorts the Paris region, travelers can explore the features of the famous French cuisine in numerous Michelin-starred restaurants, as well as visit the largest amusement park – Disneyland Paris in the town of Marne de Vallée and no less famous entertainment center – Asterix Park in the town of Playa.
The Rhône-Alpes region, the second largest province in the east of the country, which shares a border with Italy and Switzerland, takes pride of place on the list of resorts. It is named after the natural attractions of France – the full-flowing Rhône River and Europe’s highest Alpine mountains – and has a rich historical past. Lyon, the capital of the region, has preserved a large number of ancient monuments of architecture, included in the UNESCO list of cultural heritage. Sophisticated travelers are pleasantly surprised by luxurious hotels, excellent cuisine and excellent infrastructure of the region.
The success of the province lies in the stunning beauty of the Alps with the majestic Mont Blanc Peak, a large number of lakes, on the shores of which there are hot springs and bases for comfortable rest. Travelers are attracted by the natural park Vercor, including four mountains, from which a magnificent panorama of Alpine meadows, surrounding plains and gorges. The Rhône-Alpes region offers several popular ski resorts including Courchevel, which is a favourite of the Russians.
South of France
South of France has a special charm. Resort towns of France, located in the southern regions, are characterized by a measured pace of life. Magnificent Mediterranean beaches with water of amazing azure-blue color, majestic mountains and picturesque plains attract travelers from all over the world. Ruins of ancient Greek and Roman cities, medieval castles and fortresses, stone houses with traditional red tiled roofs in small villages and towns show a rich historical past.
It is worth visiting in the south of France to learn the secrets of winemaking in Bordeaux, visit the fortress city of Carcassonne, where historical festivals and shows are held, or see the preserved monuments of Renaissance architecture in Toulouse. Particularly demanding travelers can comfortably relax in the luxurious resort of Biarritz, admiring views of the Atlantic Ocean.
Provence is considered the most romantic region in the southeastern part of the country. Its picturesque nature is immortalized in the paintings of Cezanne and Van Gogh. The endless fields of lavender are reminiscent of fantastic alien landscapes. There are ‘lavender trails’, which run past fields that give off an intoxicating aroma when the lavender is in bloom, providing complete relaxation.
But the region is also famous for combining the popular resorts of France – Nice, Cannes, Saint-Tropez, located on the Côte d’Azur, with part of the Languedoc and the snow-white peaks of the Alps. Noisy quay Croisette with sea piers and luxurious yachts are linked to the quiet little villages and old Christian churches, the scorching heat of the sunny beaches of the French Riviera – with piercing winds of the Alps. Provence offers travelers the best of everything – warm caressing sea, lush nature, luxurious boutiques, delicious food and fine wines.
Weather in resorts of France
The weather in the regions of France is determined by the proximity of the seas. The northern and western regions, which have access to the Atlantic Ocean, have a temperate maritime climate with mild winters and cool summers. In the center and east, the climate is temperate continental with hot summers and cool winters. In the southeast, the Mediterranean climate brings hot, dry summers and mild winters. The weather in the resorts of France in the Alps is determined by the altitude. Above 600-800 m there is a mountain climate with precipitation for up to 6 months a year.
January is the coldest month. The temperature in the northern regions is +3-4 degrees during the day and the temperature drops to -2 at night. The Mediterranean coast is the warmest. In Nice and Cannes during the day the temperature reaches +13 degrees, at night it reaches +5 degrees. At ski resorts Avoriaz, Brides-les-Bains, Val Thorens, Courchevel at night it is freezing with average air temperature of -12-14 degrees, during the day – about zero.
The warmest July, and the warmest resort in France is Menton, located on the Mediterranean Sea, 30 km south of Nice. Beach season starts in mid-June when the water temperature reaches +21 degrees. The water is the warmest in July (+23-24 degrees). During the day the air temperature reaches +24-26 degrees and at night it cools to +17 degrees.
Where to go in France
Sometimes it can be difficult to decide where to go in France. In this country there is always fun for every taste and budget, so you should set vacation priorities and choose the right route beforehand, so the vacation does not turn into an attempt to grasp the immensity. Only in this case it is possible to have a comfortable vacation in French resorts.
The country is surrounded on three sides by sea and ocean, so it is ready to offer a beach holiday on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea or the Atlantic Ocean. The choice of resorts is great, just look at the price categories of tourist centers:
- Nice – is popular because of the magnificent beaches, a wonderful cultural program and a large number of boutiques;
- Cannes – one of the most party places on the Côte d’Azur, where travelers will find good sandy beaches, restaurants, clubs and bars open till morning;
- Saint-Tropez – fashionable resort offers warm sea, beach entertainment, interesting excursions to the monuments of architecture;
- Marseille – a resort area with good sandy beaches and lively nightlife, with bars and live music;
- Biarritz – a resort known for its luxurious beaches, chic hotels and casinos, to which the surfing craze has been added;
- La Rochelle – beaches reminiscent of Russia’s Baltic coast, suitable for beach vacations in July and August;
- La Balle – an ideal resort for fans of thalassotherapy.
Ski resorts in France
Snow-covered mountains allure lovers of downhill skiing, snowboarding, sledging from late October to mid-May. Travelers expect excellent service, developed infrastructure, comfortable hotels. When deciding on which resort to go, you need to choose the right clothing and equipment, to learn information about the number of slopes, their complexity and duration. Famous resorts include:
- Val d’Isère.
Excursion resorts in Foinzia
Visiting historic regions always leaves the best memories. Experienced travelers recommend devoting sightseeing tours in the fall and spring, when there is no exhausting heat. Every French city has preserved historical and architectural monuments, but the most attractive are:
- Ile-de-France region;
Resorts in France for vacations with children
France can give children a vivid impression of visiting “Disneyland” with its numerous attractions, water parks, museums with legendary exhibits. Another amusement park is Asterix Park, styled as the characters of ancient legends. Both parks are located in the Ile-de-France region of Paris.
Resorts by location
The territory of France has a coastline of about 3120 km. The west and north-west of the resort of Biarritz to Brest the coast is washed by the waters of the Atlantic Ocean (Bay of Biscay). In addition to Biarritz there are resort towns of St. Malo, La Baule, Dinard, part of the province of Brittany, as well as Deauville and Honfleur of Normandy region. The Channel, which connects the North Sea to the Atlantic Ocean, washes the coast in the northern regions from Brest to the Belgian border; in the south of France – the Mediterranean Sea. There are the most comfortable conditions for beach holidays at the popular resorts of the Cote d’Azur, such as Nice, Cannes, Saint-Tropez and Antibes.
Regions and resorts of France. Where to go?
Despite its small size, France is rich in a variety of resorts from beach to ski resorts. I was in different regions of France and I can say that everyone can find something special here. What to say about the many historical monuments? For example, the Loire Valley. I went there in winter and visited only two castles. It took me a whole day. And there are a great many of them, and each of them has its own unique features, architecture and landscape parks. So in some resorts and particularly noteworthy places, I advise to stay longer.
Especially when you consider that the choice of accommodation in France is quite large. I stayed mostly in hostels and small hotels in France. I recommend them and you, as expensive hotels do not always justify itself.
In the summer, I advise to go to the Cote d’Azur or the Atlantic Ocean. Winter and fall are more suitable for visiting Central France and its historical sites. I traveled by bus tours, which are quite convenient if you have a medium or small budget. They cost from 40 EUR to 300-400 EUR, depending on the number of days.
Surrounded on three sides by sea and ocean, France offers resorts for every taste and color. Not to mention its former colonies, which are almost all on islands (Martinique, Guadeloupe, French Polynesia, etc.). Most of them, of course, are very expensive, but the choice is quite large. Just before you go on vacation, you should carefully read the price ranges.
Who does not know about Nice, Cannes, St. Tropez and other cities, which offer tourists not only great hotels, and beaches with soft sand? However, they also have their disadvantages: in the summer tourists gather there almost from all over the world.
However, it is worth to go here for entertainment and partying. Clubs, bars and restaurants are ready to take visitors all day long.
You can get here by plane to Nice airport. Tickets cost from 500 EUR. Another way is to fly to Paris (from 400 EUR) and get to your desired city by TGV (high-speed train). Ticket price from 100 EUR. Travel time is 4-5 hours.
Coast of the Atlantic Ocean
The main resorts are in three regions: Aquitaine (Biarritz), Brittany (Saint-Malo or La Baule), Normandy (Deauville or Honfleur).
- Biarritz is a good place to go if you like surfing. This is the real center of the sport in France. They even hold a surf festival here in the summer.
- Go to La Balle if you are a fan of thalassotherapy, there are two major centers.
- St. Malo has beautiful beaches and an opportunity to see medieval France.
- Deauville is perfect for those who like to relax on the beach by day and go to the casino in the evening.
- Honfleur – there is a well-preserved old town with narrow streets, so after a nice day at the beach you can walk around the city.
Tours to these resorts cost from 800-1000 EUR for these resorts. If you go on your own, but you can fly to Paris and then take the TGV.
I vacationed just on the Atlantic Ocean, only on the island of Re, which is near the town of La Rochelle. It’s only an hour away, as it’s connected to it by the Ile de Ree bridge. There are buses departing from La Rochelle every hour. From the bus stop, it’s a short walk to the beaches. They are clean, well maintained. I was there at the end of April. The weather was hot. I both bathed and sunbathed.
Right next to France, there is the island of Corsica. I advise to go here for those who love the Mediterranean Sea and bright unusual landscapes. In addition to Corsica, France has former colonies that now have the status of protectorates or “special territories. For example, Martinique in the Caribbean Sea or Tahiti in the Indian Ocean. Tours there are very expensive (from 1000-1500 EUR for 1 person), because these islands are very far from Russia, and from France. But if you’re on a budget, you won’t be disappointed.
I was in some of them. True, only for a short time, but it was still an insanely interesting journey that left only the most positive emotions. I advise you to go to explore these regions in early fall or spring, when the flow of tourists is not as high as in summer. And the weather at this time of year is mild and not hot.
Ile de France
In addition to the world-famous Paris, in the suburbs of the capital city there is a large number of castles and country residences of influential people of France. The most popular of these is of course Versailles. The halls of the palace are striking in their splendor, and in the park there are two more small pavilions – the Grand and the Petit Trianon, built for the pleasures of the Sun King Louis XIV. To get there you can take the regional trains RER C. The ticket costs about 5 EUR and travel time is almost an hour.
We went with a group of friends to another, not so famous castle – Courance. You can get there only by car. Buses and other public transport do not go there. The castle is still inhabited, but excursions take place inside (the ticket costs 15 EUR).
I liked the park itself as there is a Japanese garden and straight lines of the classic French park type.
In total, there are almost 76 castles in this region, which date back to the 13th century. Here you can see almost all architectural styles – from the Early Middle Ages to the Renaissance.
You can get there either on tours or by driving through the region. One of my acquaintances in France did so, and she and her husband traveled through the region almost a week, but managed to visit only about 30 castles of the total.
I went as part of a bus tour. It cost 80 EUR. We visited two castles, Amboise and Chambord.
In the first one Leonardo da Vinci spent the last days of his life, and there is his tomb. In the castle, the decoration of the rooms is well preserved. But the Chambord disappointed me. It is very beautiful from the outside, the facade of the building is impressive, but inside there is not much to see.
Most of the rooms are empty. But I recommend you to climb to the roof of the castle with a very beautiful view.
In eastern France stretched the Alps. At their feet are located almost 200 resorts, where the whole family can relax skiing by day and resting in comfortable chalets in the evening. There are about four thousand slopes, designed for both experienced skiers and beginners.
If you do not stand on skis, the experienced instructors will definitely help you. Besides skiing you can also go snowboarding or try bobsledding. Prices for tours in Chamonix and other resorts start at 500 EUR.
In summer you can go here if you like active recreation. Go with a tent and a backpack to explore these places – solid pleasure. You can also try your hand at rock climbing, for example.
Holidays with children
If you are traveling with children, it is very important to plan your trip so it will be primarily interesting for them. France has a lot of interesting parks, amusement centers, etc. for little tourists. I will tell you about three that are definitely on the list of must see.
If you go to France with children, first of all I advise you to go to Disneyland. It is located in the suburbs of Paris, about an hour away. There are regional trains – RER. The ticket price to Disneyland for adults is about 100 EUR and for children – from 50-70 EUR depending on age. The park is divided into two parts and has a well-developed system of visiting particularly popular attractions. You take tickets for them in advance, and before the designated hour you can walk around the park and look around.
I was at Disneyland, and although I spent a day there, I only had time to see the first part of the park. I didn’t have time and energy to see the second part.
Near Paris, there is a less popular, but no less interesting “Asterix Park”. On its territory there are more than 30 attractions, designed for children of all ages. There are several stylized sectors – Gaul, the Roman Empire, Greece, etc. For children visiting this park will be not only interesting, but also educational. To get to the “Park of Asterix” is not difficult: there are special buses from the Louvre. Their fare is 10 EUR. Tickets to the park itself cost from 40-50 EUR for children.
Very interesting for children will be a visit to Carcassonne, the best preserved medieval castle in France. It is located near the city of Toulouse with which it is connected by rail (ticket costs 15-20 EUR, travel time – about an hour).
There is also an airport in the city, which, however, only accepts Ryanair planes. The castle often hosts various festivals. The price of the excursion is from 40 EUR.
Wine regions of France
These are special regions of France and a special kind of tourism. There are even special programs that allow you to go to France to work in the vineyards. As you know, wine is an integral part of French gastronomy. How can you imagine this country without this beautiful drink?
I went there as part of a bus tour to two Champagne factories. In fact, the word “champagne” itself came from the name of this region. When you first get there you are immediately amazed by the number of vineyards that stretches on both sides of the road to the horizon.
The excursion cost me 80 EUR. By the way, we also had tastings, which was especially gratifying. I didn’t buy the champagne at the factories, because it was too expensive.
How not to remember Bordeaux, if we’re talking about the wines. This oldest region of France is famous all over the world for its red wines from cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc grapes. Prices for a bottle start at 10 EUR and go up to 1000.
What is particularly gratifying is that in Bordeaux there are special tours with tastings. They cost from 100 EUR, depending on the days of the program.
Another one of the oldest wine regions of France. It produces both white wines (Chablis) and red wines (Beaujolais). The climate and fertile soils favor the growth of vineyards. There are more than 100 varieties of grapes, which produce some of the best wines in the world.