Holiday in France
France has been the world's most popular tourist destination for over twenty years and it's geographically one of the most diverse countries in Europe. Its cities contain some of the greatest treasures in Europe, its countryside is prosperous and well tended and it boasts dozens of major tourist attractions, like Paris, Côte d'Azur (the French Riviera), the Atlantic beaches, the winter sport resorts of the Alps, the Castles of Loire Valley, Brittany, Normandy: Mont Saint Michel. The country is renowned for its gastronomy (particularly wines and cheeses), history, culture and fashion.
France is located in Western Europe. Clockwise from the north, France borders Belgium and Luxembourg to the northeast, Germany and Switzerland to the east, Italy to the south-east and Spain to the south-west, across the Pyrenees mountain range (the small country of Andorra lies in between the two countries). The Mediterranean Sea lies to the south of France, with the Principality of Monaco forming a small enclave. To the west, France has a long Atlantic Ocean coastline, while to the north lies the English Channel, across which lies the last of France's neighbours, England (part of the United Kingdom).
A lot of variety, but temperate winters and mild summers on most of the territory, and especially in Paris. Mild winters and hot summers along the Mediterranean and in the southwest (the latter has lots of rain in winter). Mild winters (with lots of rain) and cool summers in the northwest (Brittany). Cool to cold winters and hot summer along the German border (Alsace). Along the Rhône Valley, occasional strong, cold, dry, north-to-northwesterly wind known as the mistral. Cold winters with lots of the snow in the Mountainous regions: Alps, Pyrenees, Auvergne.
Mostly flat plains or gently rolling hills in north and west; remainder is mountainous, especially Pyrenees in south west, Vosges , Jura and Alps in east, Massif Central in the mid south.
France is divided into 22 administrative regions, which themselves can be grouped into 7 main "cultural regions", which share common points.
Ile de France
The region surrounding the French capital, Paris.
Northern France (Nord-Pas de Calais, Picardie, and Haute-Normandie)
A region where the world wars have left many scars.
Northeast France (Alsace, Lorraine, Champagne-Ardenne and Franche-Comté)
A region where wider European culture (and especially Germanic culture) has merged with the French, giving to interesting results.
Great West (Brittany, Basse-Normandie, and Pays de la Loire)
An ocean region with a culture greatly influenced by the ancient Celtic peoples.
Central France (Centre-Val de Loire, Poitou-Charentes, Burgundy, Limousin, and Auvergne)
A largely agricultural and vinicultural region, featuring river valleys, chateaux and historic towns.
Southwestern France (Aquitaine and Midi-Pyrenees)
A region of sea and wine, with nice beaches over the Atlantic Ocean and young high mountains close to Spain.
Southeastern France (Rhône-Alpes, Languedoc-Roussillon, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur and the Mediterranean island of Corsica)
The primary tourist region of the country outside of Paris, with a warm climate and azure sea, contrasting with the mountainous French Alps.
The world-famous Loire Valley - best known for its wines and chateaux - extends across two regions in west and central France.
Corsica is a large French island located to the south-east of mainland France in the west Mediterranean Sea (close to Nice on one side and Livorno, Italy).
France has numerous cities of interest to travelers, below is a list of nine of the most notable:
Paris — the "City of Light", romance and the Eiffel Tower
Bordeaux — city of wine, traditional stone mansions and smart terraces
Bourges — gardens, canals and a cathedral listed as a UNESCO heritage site
Lille (Dutch: Rijsel) — a dynamic northern city known for its handsome center and active cultural life
Lyon — France's second city with a history from Roman times to the Resistance
Marseille — big harbor and the heart of the Provence
Nantes — the "Greenest City" and according to some the best place to live in Europe
Strasbourg — famous for its historical center, and home to many European institutions
Toulouse — the "Pink City", for its distinctive brick architecture, main city of Occitania.
Vacation Rentals France