Itineraries & Travel Tips | France Just For You
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Itineraries & Travel Tips

The Hidden Gems of the French Riviera

Villefranche sur Mer
I grew up in the Loire Valley, so my family didn't venture as far as the French Riviera for our summer beach vacation. We tended to head to the expansive sandy beaches of the Normandy coast, or to the beautiful Saint-Malo in Brittany. I was actually in my late 20s and seven months pregnant the first time I visited the Côte d'Azur. Guillaume and I had just started France Just For You and we wanted to visit the regions in France that we hadn't been to before. It was a long but scenic road trip through the winding mountain roads as we headed to the warmth of the Mediterranean. Truth be told, my...

Things to do in Les Baux-de-Provence

From Les Baux de Provence Castle
On our self-guided tours, we take pride in sending our travelers off the beaten track. However, there are some places that, in spite of being very touristy, we recommend visiting nonetheless. Les Baux de Provence is a case in point. One of the most beautiful villages in France, this immense and superb stone fortress is without doubt one of the must-sees on the Provencal tourist trail. The village has been painstakingly restored over recent years and is now one of the most popular attractions in Provence. Its spectacular location upon a rocky outcrop means you can enjoy brilliant views over...

Paris Exhibitions and Events in 2019 [Updated]

Musée de l'Orangerie Paris Exhibition Places to visit in Paris
If you're planning to visit Paris in 2019, you will surely be interested in finding out about the essential Paris exhibitions to check out this year. Here we have put together a comprehensive list of exhibitions we think people should include in their Paris itinerary, depending on the date of their visit and their specific interests. If you are doing a tour with us, be sure to let us know if you would like us to include a particular Paris exhibition in your itinerary ! Scroll down to find the 2019 exhibitions at: The Louvre...

The Best Day Trips from Paris

Rouen - best day trips from Paris
If you're planning to spend a week or more in Paris, you may want to escape the city for a day during your trip. Here we suggest ten possible day trips from Paris. Bear in mind that it is better to have more than a day in some of these places. Normally we would recommend staying in B&B accommodation nearby so that you can arrive before or leave after the tourist crowds on day tours from Paris. Nonetheless, here are our top recommendations! Palace of Versailles The Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versailles ( Myrabella / Wikimedia...

Where to stay in the Loire Valley

Loire Valley chateaux - where to stay in the Loire Valley
The Loire Valley 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...

Things to do in Honfleur, Normandy

Things to do in Honfleur, Normandy
If you're planning to spend a day in Normandy , the gorgeous little harbor town of Honfleur on Normandy's coast is a great option. The best of Honfleur can be seen in half a day, though you may like to stay longer and relax on Butin beach (la Plage du Butin) about a mile and a half from downtown. Where is Honfleur? On the Normandy coast, Honfleur is located on the estuary where the River Seine meets the English Channel. It is just across from Le Havre, which has the second largest port in France after Marseille. Honfleur is a 2.5 to 3-hour drive from Paris, depending on the...

Essential French Phrases for your France Road Trip

French conversation - Essential French Phrases for your French road trip
If you've never studied French before, or your high school French is a little rusty, it’s helpful to learn a few essential French phrases before traveling to France. This will give you more confidence finding your way around in France. You will know how to greet people politely before asking if they speak English, and it shows you're willing to make the effort, and French people will appreciate that. It might also help you make friends! Although many French people can understand some English, they tend to find it harder to speak, so they will feel more at ease if you show your willingness to...

7 beautiful French villages for your travel bucket list

Beautiful French Villages
Les Plus Beaux Villages de France Association consists of 155 of the most beautiful villages in France, worthy of any travel bucket list. These villages want visitors to experience the best of French culture and heritage beyond the most popular tourist sites. Most of these villages only have a population of a few hundred people, offering tourists a more intimate and authentic experience of our wonderful country. Here are seven of our favourite French villages. Gourdon, Provence The drive from Tourrettes-sur-Loup to the little French village of Gourdon offers some magnificent...

Hidden beauty on the French Riviera: The Lérins Islands

Lérins Islands Saint Honorat Abbey
We visited the Lérins Islands on our first research trip of the French Riviera , during the early days of France Just For You. We knew that we would include this region in our self-drive tours of France, so it was essential that we knew it inside out. Our first port of call on the French Riviera was Nice, and the crowded pebble beach there was nothing to write home about, though I did enjoy our swim under the stars that night. Only in the French Riviera is the sea warm enough to bathe in at night in October! But after a couple of days in this southern city, we felt that our whole experience...

6 alternative places to visit in Paris

Paris secret places
Most people who visit France will know about the most famous places to visit in Paris - the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Moulin Rouge, to name a few - and we agree that a visit to these places is a must! However, at France Just For You, we pride ourselves on sending our travelers to places that many tourists don't know about. We want you to have a truly unique and authentic experience of France. Here we suggest some alternative places to visit in Paris which you may not have thought of: Monet's Waterlilies at the Musee de l'Orangerie The Musée de l'Orangerie is on the other side of the...

The 130th Anniversary of the Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel Tower anniversary in Paris
Any mention of France, and Paris in particular, will surely conjure up an image of the most iconic of icons, a symbol of romance and geometrical elegance. The Eiffel Tower in Paris (or Tour Eiffel de Paris, as it is called in French) , which celebrates its 130 th anniversary on March 31 st , 2019. With nearly 7 million people visiting each year and 250 million visitors in total since its inauguration in 1889, the Eiffel Tower is one of the world’s most popular attractions. But not many people know the history behind it, or how the Iron Lady has managed to stay standing for so long. Here are...

10 of the best beaches in France

Best beaches in France
Many travelers feel drawn to France by its rich history, castles, gardens, cuisine and landscapes. Some of our most beautiful summer landscapes are on the French coast, so for those who plan to visit France during the summer months, we’ve compiled a selection of some of the best beaches in France, which would make a perfect day-trip to include in your tour of France . Saint Malo, Brittany Saint Malo is an old town steeped in history, and was recently voted best beach spot in France . Walking along the town’s cobbled streets may feel like taking a step back in time. High...

7 Summer Festivals in France You Shouldn't Miss

France Just For You - summer festivals in France
When it comes to summer festivals in France, visitors are spoilt for choice. From festivals dedicated to regional history and tradition, to popular and classical music festivals, we have something for everyone. You may like to read our post on French festivals you should experience , but if you know you’ll be in France in the summer-time, here are seven of our best festivals to add to your travel itinerary. Carcassonne Festival The Carcassonne Festival has been running annually throughout July in southern France’s Languedoc region since 2006. Around 250,000 people attend...

5 Reasons to Visit the Loire Valley

Amboise in the Loire Valley
Be sure to swing by the outstanding Loire Valley on your next vacation to France for castles, nature and plenty of wine! When you think of France your mind probably goes to the leafy boulevards of Paris or the glittering coastline of the French Riviera . It might even go to the vineyards of Bordeaux . But, there is a beautiful, unassuming part of the country that also deserves your attention and recognition: The Loire Valley . The Loire Valley is just northwest of the centre of France and is named such for its location...

6 Reasons Why You Should Stay in B&Bs in France

The Good Life in Southern France
Thinking about travelling through France? Why not stay in a French B&B for a unique and intimate experience? If you want to add an extra layer of authenticity to your travels through France, why not switch up your hotels for some B&Bs? Staying in a Bed & Breakfast is a great way to get an insight into the French way of life. You can observe first-hand how a French family lives and operates and, in doing so, immerse yourself in French culture. What’s more, French B&Bs are limited to just five rooms so you will have an intimate and personal...

7 Reasons to Visit France on a Self-Drive Trip

Beynac in Dordogne
A vacation to France is guaranteed to be one you will never forget – so long as you do it right. A self-drive trip around France is the best way to explore the country. You become your own tour guide and have complete autonomy as to how you want your holiday to be. Add to that virtually unlimited mobility and the comfort of your own vehicle and you are probably starting to wonder why you’ve never done one of these before. Need a bit more convincing? We have laid out some of the main reasons why you...

5 French Festivals You Should Experience

When it comes to festivals, France knows what it is doing. We go all out, whatever the occasion, with music, food, parades and more . But, there are a lot of festivals in France, ranging from celebrity-studded, glamorous events to religious ceremonies , steeped in tradition. While all of the festivals have something fun and unique to offer, there are some that really stand out . Here are our suggestions of five of the best French festivals that you really should experience at least once in your lifetime. Cannes Film...

Why France is the World’s Top Tourist Destination

Roman ruins at Arles, Provence - why is france so popular
It should come as no surprise to know that France is the world’s most popular tourist destination . With 89 million visitors every year, France is a head and shoulders above Spain, which comes in second, receiving 82 million visitors per year. The number 3 spot goes to the USA with 78 million. These statistics confirm that France is once again the world's first choice holiday destination, despite a rather turbulent few years. So, what is it exactly that attracts people from all over the world to France? We'll try to boil France down to its essence and show you why it is the...

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