The geographic diversity of France would be hard to exhaust in a lifetime of visits. Its cities contain some of the greatest treasures in Europe and its countryside is littered with dozens of major tourist attractions. From the beaches of Normandy to the French Riviera and everything in between, each region looks and feels different.
Things Not to Miss in France
- Champagne Tasting at Épernay – Dom Pérignon is the most famous, but there are plenty of other bubblies to try in the cellars of Épernay’s maisons.
- Corsican Beaches – Some of France’s best beaches are found on Corsica, with its white shell sand and turquoise water.
- Bordeaux – Bordeaux was the principal English stronghold in France for years, and is still known for its refined red wines.
- The Louvre – The palace of the Louvre cuts a grand Classical swathe through the centre of Paris and houses what is nothing less than the gold standard of France’s artistic tradition.
- Bastille Day – July 14 sees national celebrations commemorating the beginning of the French Revolution, with fireworks and parties.
- Mont St-Michel – One of France’s best-loved landmarks, Mont St-Michel is a splendid union of nature and architecture.
- Aix-en-Provence – Aix is Provence’s regional capital, and with its wonderful market, top-class restaurants and lively bars, it makes a very satisfying stop.
- D-Day Beaches – Code-named ‘Operation Overlord’, the D-Day landings were the largest seaborne invasion in history. You can Pay tribute to the Fallen Heroes on Normandy’s D-Day Beaches.
- Eiffel Tower – This elegant, 320m-tall signature spire is iconic of France. Even if you don’t see the romance of looking at Paris from atop the tower, the 704-step climb to the second level is plenty of exercise for the more activity-minded tourists.
When to Travel – If possible, try to avoid French school holidays and Easter. Hotels are very likely to be overbooked and traffic on the roads awful. Holidays: Mostly, the winter holidays are Feb 10-Mar 10. The spring holidays are often 10 Apr-10 May. Winter gets very cold, sometimes freezing. Make sure to bring appropriate clothing to keep you warm while visiting. Hotels are very likely to be overbooked and road traffic awful on the following date: May 1, May 8, Nov 11, and Easter Weekend.
Electricity – 220 to 230V 50Hz.
Plugs – Travellers from the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Italy, Switzerland and other countries using 230V 50Hz which use different plugs simply require a plug adaptor to use their appliances in France.
Voltage: Travellers from the US, Canada, Japan and other countries using 110V, 60Hz may need a voltage converter. Some laptops, mobile phone chargers and other devices, however, can accept either 110V or 230V so only require a simple plug adaptor. Check the voltage rating plates on your appliances before connecting them.