Explore French History | France Just For You
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Explore French History

Walk on the footsteps of the Kings of France...stay in old-stone houses which were built before America was discovered...this is France !

Exploring Le Marais district in Paris

Place Sainte Catherine in Le Marais, Paris
Many of our travelers want to spend a few days in Paris during their self-guided tour of France . In Paris, we work with a charming family-run boutique hotel in the fashionable yet quaint Marais district in the 4th arrondissement. TIP: There are a lot of different metro stations around Le Marais district. Decide which place you would like to visit first, and then see which stations are near. Also check which metro line will be most convenient from where you’re starting. Le Marais - our favorite district in Paris, full of charm and antiquity A cafe in Le Marais in Paris (Photo© Borya CC...

Books to Read Before Your Trip to France

books - Novels set in France
As part of preparing for and getting excited about your trip, we recommend immersing yourself in literature, films, and music related to France! You can learn a lot about our country from the things people have written, and their descriptions of the landscape and the people. In this post, we have included a selection of ‘easy reading’ and classic novels set in France. Stuff Parisians Like - Olivier Magny This is a tongue-in-cheek, short book about the qualities and flaws of Parisians. Many things are very true in this book, as you may discover on your trip to Paris! We like this synopsis of...

Explore the best prehistoric caves in France

Padirac Chasm - prehistoric caves in France - bucket list
For travelers who are interested in geology, caves and prehistoric art, there are many prehistoric caves in France that are worth visiting. Some are the original caves and some are replicas - but both types are worth visiting. Here we list some of our favorite caves in France, any of which we can try to include in your itinerary . All of the below are located in the Dordogne and Lot region s of southwestern France, except for the Chauvet cave, which is in Provence . Lascaux Cave Of all the prehistoric caves in France, this is one of the most famous. Discovered on 8th September 1940 by 18-year...

Seven Wonders of France

Pont du Gard best places in France
There may only be one ancient wonder of the world left – the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt – and France does not feature among the modern wonders of the world. However, for those who are interested in discovering the most wonderful places in France, we have compiled this list, and we're calling it ' The Seven Wonders of France '. Marqueyssac Gardens in Dordogne As a nod to one of the ancient wonders of the world, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon , we are starting our French Wonders list with one of the most beautiful gardens in France . The ...

After the Fire: Notre Dame de Paris will rise again

Inside Notre Dame de paris before the fire
As I write this post, I join the rest of France and millions of people around the world who remain in shock following the fire that started on April 15th, 2019. For us, Notre Dame is more than a landmark and a place of worship. It is a work of art that has born witness to our history for the greater part of the last millennium. It is a symbol of human accomplishment and endurance across many generations. “It’s the very soul of Paris, but it’s not just for French people. For all humanity, it’s one of the great monuments to the best of civilisation,” said Barbara Drake Boehm, senior curator at...

Where to stay in the Loire Valley

Loire Valley chateaux - where to stay in the Loire Valley
The Loire region spans 175 miles, so naturally the first question on many travelers' minds will be where to stay in the Loire Valley. This post looks at some of the most central and popular locations in the Loire Valley, as well as locations which are a bit more remote or farther afield. We explain the pros and the cons of each location and their position in relation to some of the Loire Valley's main attractions. We hope this will help you to decide which area would suit you best during your stay in the Loire. To travel to the Loire Valley is to experience 'the good life' in France. Its mild...

WWI Sites in France

War Memorials in France, WW1 sites in France
World War 1 was characterised by death and misery along the Western Front , a stretch of land that covered around 400 miles of France and Belgium . Soldiers fought one another in mud-filled trenches, greatly suffering from the poor conditions. Nowadays, this part of Europe has been transformed into a number of thriving towns and villages that live at peace with one another, no doubt thanks to the efforts of our valiant fighters. However, what took place here during the First World War has not and will not be forgotten. The former Western...

Normandy’s WWII Sites

The D Day Landing in Normandy
Interested in European history? Normandy is rich with fascinating memorials and museums commemorating some of Europe's darkest days The beaches in Normandy are of great historical importance . It was here that, on the fateful day of the 6th June 1944, also known as D-Day , the Allies invaded Normandy and began the liberation of Nazi-controlled north-western Europe. On the first day, around 160,000 troops landed on the beach and by the end of June, one million soldiers had crossed the English Channel and marched on to the...

19 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in France

Inside notre Dame Cathedral in Paris
In this post, we're listing the UNESCO World Heritage sites in France that are located in the regions that we cover in our tours. The whole of France is famous for its many architectural and historical monuments, and we are happy to include some of these in our self-drive itineraries . Of the 1073 sites on the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) list of World Heritage Sites , 43 are in France. It has the fourth largest number of historical sites in the world after Italy (53), China...

Visit Lascaux, ‘the Sistine Chapel of Prehistory’

Lascaux 4 prehistoric site in Dordogne
On September 8th 1940, the world was at war and 18-year-old Marcel Ravidat was out walking his dog in a clearing in the region of Lascaux, Dordogne . Suddenly, his dog disappeared. Marcel starting calling out to him, and he eventually found him emerging from a hole in the ground that had been revealed by a tree that had fallen down the year before. Marcel tossed some stones down the hole and listened as they bounced and descended deeper and deeper into an apparent underground abyss. Curiouser and curiouser . Marcel had a feeling he had just stumbled upon something extraordinary...

The Legends of Mont Saint Michel

Mont Saint Michel
In this post we explore some of the myths and legends of the islet of Mont Saint Michel ! Are you just looking for general information about Mont Saint Michel? Then please visit our general page about Mont Saint Michel . Are you looking for tours of Mont Saint Michel ? Then please visit our Mont Saint Michel day tour page or our Normandy tours page . We can arrange guided tours of Mont Saint Michel which avoid the tourist crowds. Mont Saint Michel - ©CRT Normandy ...

Were King Charles VIII and Anne of Brittany really in love?

The family in the castle of Langeais
Being in love to get married is a quite "new" consideration...in the past, in France, love was not really a matter when it came to get married... On December 6th 1491, the château of Langeais (our home-town…we actually live in the street called Anne de Bretagne) was the scene of the dawn wedding between Charles VIII and Duchess Anne of Brittany . The 14-year-old Duchess Anne, not happy with the arranged marriage, arrived for her wedding with her entourage carrying two beds! This union put an end to the war between France and Anne’s Brittany independent duchy and started to incorporate...

We found Moulinsart!

Château des Gaschetières
While looking for new Bed & Breakfasts and activities in the Loire Valley around Chambord castle, we came upon the beautiful castle that you can see above on the picture. Since last year everybody heard about Tintin, the comics hero created by Hergé that Steven Spielberg made a movie about. The movie ends up in Captain Haddock’s castle, which Hergé is supposed to have created from Cheverny castle. Cheverny is another Loire Valley beautiful castle - close to Chambord castle - that you can visit, and even attend to the impressive feeding of the hounds pack. After discovering this castle -...
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