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places to visit in france, Calanques France Itinerary

Places to visit in France

France has got a lot to offer. There’s no question about it. But how to choose from this wide range? We have created a little overview of the must-see places to visit in France.

Paris

A selection of the best tours in Paris, Eiffel Tower Prices, places to visit in Paris

Certainly, Paris the most visited place in France. The City of Lights invites everyone who is planning to do some sightseeing, those who are interested in culture, art and architecture as well as guests who just wish to go out and have a good time. The surrounding area around Paris should be mentioned. For example, you can go to Versailles and visit the breath-taking castle of the former French kings and its marvelous gardens. For those who feel like having a bit more action can visit Disneyland.

Champagne region

places to visit in FranceIn the Northeast of France, the Champagne region is most famous for its production of fine sparkling wine – the real Champagne. Wine lovers can visit vineyards and wine cellars or participate in wine and Champagne tastings.

Reims is one of the cities in the Champagne region with several monuments designated to the UNESCO world heritage, like its giant cathedral. Especially for those who are interested in medieval traces, the castles in the region are worth a visit, for example the Castle of Sedan.

On top of that, the landscape of the Champagne region is particularly charming because of its many lakes and forests, for example in the natural park Montage de Reims. There are even limestone caves tourists can visit.

NormandyMont Saint Michel, places to visit in France

Apart from beaches, cliffs and museums, you can visit Mont Saint-Michel – a small fortified town on a tidal island on the coast of Normandy. Don’t miss visiting the Abbey and the winding alley of the town below. Learn more about Mont Saint-Michel here.

Strasbourg

strasbourg, france in 15 days all inclusive, places to visit in FranceLocated in the region of Alsace, Strasbourg is the capital of Europe and seat of the European parliament with numerous museums. Besides, the Roman-gothic cathedral is one of its most important sights. The architecture of Strasbourg is particularly charming because of the great number of half-timbered houses of Alemannic and South German style. Since it there are two rivers, you can participate in a boat cruise to see all the monuments and sights. Especially in Christmas time, the center of Strasbourg enchants with its Christmas markets.

Loire Valley

This region captivates tourists with breath-taking landscapes, ancient castles and fortresses, old villages and impressive monuments. For example, you can visit the UNESCO-designated cathedral in Nantes. Learn more about travelling to Loire Valley here.Loire Valley 2 Days, loire valley private in 1 day, places to visit in France

Provence

Provence, Lavender, places to visit in FranceEspecially in summer, the Provence region in the south of France is worth a visit because of its amazing landscapes with olive trees and the fragrant lavender fields. The Provence region also has some wonderful cities. Marseille is the second biggest French city after Paris. Located on the shore of the Mediterranean Sea, it does not only offer culture but also magnificent beaches. If already in the Provence region, make sure you stop by Arles and Aix-en-Provence – two cities full of ancient Roman and medieval traces.

Lyon

lyon, france in 15 days all inclusive, places to visit in FranceLocated in the Southeast, Lyon is one of the best places to visit in France. It is the third biggest city of the country and its old town was designated to the UNESCO world heritage. Amongst other things, you can visit its religious buildings like the Saint-Jean Cathedral or the Basilica Notre-Dame de Fourvière.

Don’t miss the capital of French gastronomy! Great chefs like Paul Bocuse left their marks on the regional cuisine of Lyon. The small restaurants serving traditional regional dishes attract lovers of good food from all over the world. The regional food is simple but exquisite using the huge variety of cheese, fish, vegetables and fine wines from all around the city.

Bordeaux

bordeaux, bordeaux wine trip, places to visit in FranceBordeaux is probably most famous for the regional fine wine. It is the largest wine region in the world and offers a great deal of culinary delight. Besides, it is a university city and the political and intellectual center of the Southwest of France. The city has got a lot to offer – art, culture, museums and extraordinary architecture. Visitors are attracted by its impressive ecclesiastical buildings, for instance the Saint-André Cathedral.

French Riviera

The French Riviera is certainly one of the most important places to visit in France! It is a popular destination for both French and foreign tourists because of its magnificent beaches and cities, such as St-Tropez, Cannes or Nice.

Paris Day Trips, places to visit in France

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Versailles, Palace of Versailles,Trips from Paris to Versailles

How to get from Paris to Versailles

At least once in your life you must have heard for sure about the Palace of Versailles, ancient seat of political power in France, where most of the French history was made. And guess what? It’s only 12 miles from Paris! Discover here how to get from Paris to Versailles.

This Castle is located in the suburban city of Versailles, in Place d’Armes. It is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 9 am to 6.30 pm. You can reach it by train, RER, bus, shuttle, car or taxi. You only have to choose which is the best solution for you to get from Paris to Versailles.

How to get from Paris to Versailles, Paris Day Trips Versailles

paristoversailles

RER

Taking this suburban transit system you will have to purchase a special metro ticket (either at the vending machines or at the information points), since Versailles is located in zone 4, therefore a simple Ticket+ is not valid. If you have a day or week pass valid for zones 1 to 4, you can use it without problem.
So here we go: you can take the yellow line of the RER C5 and stop at Versailles-Rive Gauche/Versailles-Château, which is 5-10 minutes’ walk to the Palace, or you can take the RER C7 and stop at Gare de Versailles-Chantiers, which is instead about 0.6 miles from the Château. Within Paris, you can take the RER from the following stations: Javel, Pont du Garigliano, Champ de Mars, Pont de l’Alma, Invalides, Musée d’Orsay, St-Michel, Paris Austerlitz, Bibliothèque François Mitterand. Make sure you choose the right directions!

 

Bus

If you want to take the bus, in order to stop closer to the Palace, you can take the bus 171, which leaves from the metro stop Pont de Sèvres, on line 9, and get off at the bus stop Versailles-Place d’Armes. If you want to know in detail the timetable and the stops on this line, you can check on RATP website .

 

Versailles palace, how to get from Paris to Versailles

The Chateau de Versailles station – Credit: Wikipedia

Train

If you want to get there by train, you will have to leave from the SNCF (the French national railway company) station in Montparnasse or Saint Lazare. From Paris Montparnasse you will have to get off the train in Versailles Chantiers train station, which is about 0.6 miles from the Castle, while from Paris Saint Lazare you have to stop at Versailles Rive Droit and walk to the Chateau for half a mile.

 

Shuttle

If you prefer travelling by coach, check our package Versailles Day Tour: it provides round-trip transportation from Paris to Versailles, entrance to both the gardens and the palace, fast-track tickets and audioguides. Click here to book.

How to get from Paris to Versailles, Day trip from Paris, versailles, how to get from Paris to Versailles, the versailles gardens, day trips from paris by trainCar

If you travel by car from Paris, you will have to take the A13 road, with direction E5 Rouen/Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines/Versailles. Take the exit Versailles Château and follow the directions to the castle. There are several paid parkings close to the entrance and even inside the park! Some categories of visitors, for instance disabled people, will not have to pay. Click here to have further information about fares and reductions, and to have a complete map of all the available parkings.

 

Uber

You don’t want to drive, but you don’t want to take the public transports either? You can call Uber from your phone app, and it will take you to the Castle in about 45 minutes for 30 up to 45 euros.

 

Now you know all the ways to get from Paris to Versailles. What are you waiting for? Book now your trip!

 

Discover Versailles here

 

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paris markets, best food markets in Paris

Best 5 food markets in Paris

Food is one of the many reasons why tourists are so fond of Paris. However, when you are in the French capital, it might be difficult to decide what and where to eat without spending a fortune. Well, you can find the solution to your problems following this guide to the best five food markets in Paris!

 

Paris Food, best food markets in paris
Food markets are very popular in Paris, since they offer a wider variety of produtcs than supermarkets, often at a lower price. This is why a lot of Parisians do their groceries there on a weekly basis. So what are you waiting? Discover which are the best food markets in Paris, and decide which one is the best for you!

 

Marché d’Aligre

best food marketsOpened in 1866, it is one of the oldest market in Paris, and also one of the cheapest. It is characterized by a strong village and bazar atmosphere, friendly and animated. Treat yourself with good quality food, a wide selection of spices and different products from all over the world. It is divided in two different sections:

Marché Aligre: It is an open air food and flea market. Here you will find fresh fruit and vegetables from different regions and countries, second hand clothing, bric-a-brac and old books.

Marché Beauveau: It is a covered market in which you will mainly find cooked food stalls where you can buy and try fish, meat, cheese, spices, olives, oil and exotic food.

Once you’re done with your shopping, go sit in a terrasse and enjoy a moment of relax.

Where: 12th arrondissement, metro stop Ledru Rollin, in Place d’Aligre and from Rue de Charenton to Rue Saint-Antoine.
When: Marché d’Aligre – Tuesday and Saturday from 8am to 5pm; Sunday from 8am to 1pm.
Marché Beauvau – Tuesday and Friday from 9am to 1pm and from 4pm to 7:30pm; Saturday from 9am to 1pm and from 3:30pm to 7:30pm; Sunday from 8:30am to 1:30pm.

best food markets in Paris

Wikimedia commons

Batignolles

It is a small certified bio market in which you can find a wide range of fresh products buying directly from farmers and producers: fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, flower essential oils, fresh milk, herb smoothies, vegan food and much more. Of course organic goods are a bit more expensive, but remember you are paying for high quality.

Where: 17th arrondissement, metro stop Rome, 34 boulevard des Batignolles
When: Saturday from 9 am to 3pm

 

Marché  des Enfants Rouges

best food marketsIt is one of the oldest markets in France: built out of a 16th century orphanage, it was named historical monument in 1982. The name is given by the colour of children’s cothes, which had been donated by Christians for charity. In 2000, it reopened as a food market in which you can find fresh organic food as well as Japanese, Libanese, African, Arab, Antilles and Chinese dishes. It is the ideal place to have a quick lunch on the spot.

 

Where: The Marais – 3rd arrondissement, metro stop Filles du Calvaire, 39 rue de Bretagne
When: From Tuesday to Friday from 8.30am to 1pm and from 4pm to 7.30pm; Saturday from 4pm to 8pm; Sunday from 8.30am to 2pm

 

best food markets in paris

Wikimedia Commons

Raspail

Active from 1989, this market consists of about 50 bio-certified sellers and producers which offer fruit, vegetables, meat, wine, cheese, bakery, takeaway food stalls, flowers and cosmetics. It’s one of the most popular and chic markets in Paris, where all products are high quality and without GMO or pesticides.

Where: 6th arrondissement, metro stop Sèvres-Babylone, 71 Boulevard Raspail
When: Tuesday and Friday from 7am to 2.30pm; Sunday from 7am to 3pm

 

best food market

Wikimedia commons

Bastille

It’s one of the biggest and most animated markets in Paris, with about a hundred sellers providing a wide variety of local products like cheese, meat, fish, fruit, honey, olives and wine. Crepes stalls are also a must. Here you will find good deals at reasonable prices.

 

Where: 11ème arrondissement, metro stops Bastille and Oberkampf, Boulevard Richard Lenoir
When: Thursday from 7am to 2.30pm; Sunday from 7am to 3pm.

 

And these were the best 5 food markets in Paris for your greedy needs. Don’t miss them!

 

Check our more photos about Food Markets:

 

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paris in 3 days, nightlife in Paris

Nightlife in Paris

Paris is also called the City of Lights – and not without reason! As a city that never sleeps, there are inviting nightlife offers to be found throughout the week. Here is a short overview of things to do at night during your visit in Paris.

Nightlife Venues in Paris

Many Parisians love to hang out on the river banks of the River Seine, enjoying some wine or having a picnic. But if you prefer something out on the town, you can find all sorts of nightlife venues all over the metropole. Restaurants, various kinds of bars and pubs, clubs, cinemas, theaters… Paris has a lot to offer!

Paris in the Rain, nightlife in Paris

Cabaret

Certainly, everybody has already heard of the Moulin Rouge. But have you heard of the other cabarets such as the Lido or The Crazy Horse? Are you ready for a glamourous night out – full of sensuality and elegance?

Clubs

nightlife in paris, discothequeCabaret is not the only type of nightlife in Paris. There are a lot of well-known and rather posh clubs in Paris such as the Palais Maillot, which is known for its legendary after-work parties. Especially in summer, we recommend enjoying your night in Paris in one of the marvelous rooftop bars like at Hotel Raphael in the 16th arrondissement. You can choose a club or restaurant with a terrace as well – Wanderlust, Nuba or La Bellevilloise, to name a few.

Why not spend a night on a boat on the River Seine? For example, The Flow combines a restaurant, bar and club all opening at midnight. While this might not be the cheapest venue in Paris, it is certainly worth a visit.

Dancing

If you are interested in Latin dancing, the river banks of the Seine are the place to go! You can find salsa events taking place at Tino Rossi Garden, a park on the river bank near Notre Dame Cathedral. For colder days, you can also enjoy Latin music in some clubs like L’International (5th arrondissement).

 

Popular Districts

Do you prefer to discover nightlife in Paris on your own? Here are some neighborhoods that you should check out.

Certainly, there are popular nightlife venues all over the city, but each neighborhood has its own specific style. St.-Germain-des-Prés and St.-Michel are known for their jazz clubs, whereas posh and very trendy clubs like L’Arc or the Matignon find themselves around avenue Champs-Élysées.nightlife in paris, bars

Since it has always been a lively students’ district, the Latin Quarter has a lot of restaurants and bars to offer – for those with a medium or low budget, too. Le Marais is also worth a try as this neighborhood is enthralling with its many charming bars.

Don’t underestimate the east of Paris! The 20th arrondissement – Belleville & Ménilmontant – as well as Oberkampf, Bastille and Canal-St.-Martin offer plenty of fashionable bars and clubs for young people such as the Comptoir Général or the Favela Chic.

nightlife in paris, night busHow to get Home

Before going out, please take note that the metros stop running from 01:00 to 05:00. There are several options of getting back home. Besides calling a taxi, you can use the night busses (Noctiliens). They run from 00:30 to 05:30. Please research the night bus service of the local transport company RATP beforehand. If you haven’t had too much to drink, you can rent a bicycle at a Velib’ station.

nightlife in paris, happy hour

Tips

Here is some advice which could help you checking out the nightlife in Paris.

In some of the clubs, especially the trendy ones, you should make a reservation beforehand. You might be refused if you don’t. So just call in advance and make sure you won’t find yourself in front of closed doors.

Would you rather spend your night in a pub or a bar but you don’t want to spend too much money? No problem! A great number of them offer happy hour, take advantage!

Safety

The center of Paris is a rather safe place since there are always people in the streets and on the subways, day and night. But, don’t forget that this Paris is still a big city! As usual, you should always avoid going out alone at night. If possible, take at least one or two friends with you. Keep an eye on each other and on your belongings. Always avoid suspicious people and walk on the well-light side of the street to stay on the safe side.

Stay safe while joining the fun!

 

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st-germain, city walk

City walk: Latin Quarter & St.-Germain-des-Prés

Right south of Île-de-la-cité, the Latin Quarter is especially known for its art cinema houses, bookstores and numerous restaurants, whereas St. Germain-des-Prés used to be Paris’ center of intellectuals and philosophers. Stroll along the alleys and get the feeling!

Monuments and History

Latin Quarter, city walkThe Panthéon is one of the most important sights you surely shouldn’t miss during your city walk in Paris. Dedicated to Paris’ patron saint Sainte Geneviève, it was completed in 1791. Its crypt serves as a mausoleum for the “Champions of French liberty” such as Voltaire, Rousseau, Pierre and Marie Curie and many others.

If you are interested in a more ancient part of history, visit the Arènes de Lutèce, a gallo-roman arena from the 1st century.

Religion

Grande Mosquée, city walk, Latin QuarterRight next to the metro stop St.-Germain-des-Prés, you will find the St. Germain-des-Prés church which gives the neighborhood its name. Its foundations were laid during the 6th century but only the church is left. The other parts were destroyed during the French Revolution. At night, the surrounding area is full of artists and mimes.

St. Sulpice church is one of the biggest churches of Paris with an extraordinary façade, designed by Giovanni Servandoni. Among other things, it is famous for having been featured in Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code.

Furthermore, you should not miss the Great Mosque of Paris. It enchants with blue and green mosaics and a marvelous garden on the inner courtyard.

Museums

Your city walk will certainly lead you to some wonderful museums. The Cluny Museum hosts an enormous selection of medieval art. Otherwise known as Le Musée National du Moyen Âge, it is considered one of the most important sights in Paris. Its most famous piece is a series of tapestries called The Lady and the Unicorn. Moreover, the National Museum of Natural History located in Luxembourg Garden and the Institut du Monde Arabe are definitely worth a visit.

lady and the unicorn, musée du moyen âge, city walk, quartier latin

Gastronomy

rue mouffetard, city walk, latin quarterExplore the narrow alleys between Rue du Petit Pont and St.-Michel boulevard! On Rue de la Huchette and Rue de la Harpe, restaurants and street cafés follow one another. In fact, this is a rather touristy area. If you prefer a more authentic atmosphere, Rue Mouffetard is probably the right place to go. At night, numerous restaurants, bars and cafés open their doors. From Tuesday to Sunday, Rue Mouffetard has one of the most beautiful markets of the city.

Don’t miss the venerable cafés in St-Germain-des-Prés during your city walk! The Procope was Paris’ first coffee-house. It was frequented by famous intellectuals and philosophers like Rousseau or Voltaire. The Café de Flore, the Deux Magots and the Brasserie Lipp have a similar history. Rue des Canettes, Rue Guisarde and Rue Princesse assemble to a very lively quarter with more bars and restaurants.

Parkscity walk, fontaine medici, luxembourg garden, latin quarter, st-germain-des-prés

Queen Marie de Médicis established the Luxembourg Garden in 1612. On a surface of more than 60 acres, it includes various gardens, playgrounds, the Pavillon de la Fontaine, the Medici fountain as well as the Musée du Luxembourg and the Palais de Luxembourg, the seat of the Sénat.

The Jardin des Plantes is the main botanical garden of Paris. Among other museums, it houses the National Museum of Natural History, an aquarium and a zoo.

Other places you should not miss

The Sorbonne University lies behind a small square framed by trees and cafés. In 1253, the Sorbonne was established as a theological school and gives the Latin Quarter its name since Latin used to be the language of scholars. Renowned high-schools are located all around the neighborhood. Therefore, this area is still lively and full of students.

South of Notre-Dame Cathedral, Shakespeare & Company is a bookstore known for its great selection of English books. It is an important place of literature and history since it was frequented by famous writers like Ernest Hemingway. Its extraordinary interior creates a cosy and even mysterious atmosphere.
city walk, shakespeare and company, Latin Quarter

Guided Walking Tours

Of course, you can book various walking tours guided by locals who give insider tips. If you are interested, please check the offers online. Still, if you prefer to discover the city independently, go your own way. Take your time and get the Parisian feeling wandering through its beautiful streets!

 

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Loire River Cruises

Loire River Cruise

Interested in visiting Loire River? Want to explore the entire Loire River in a different way? A Loire River Cruise will let you uncover the charm along the Loire River!

Loire River

The Loire River is the longest river in France, at 1013km (629 miles) long. It is known as the “royal river” because numerous kings and aristocrats used to live in hundreds of beautiful castles located along the river bank. It is also famous for its wildness as it is the last “wild river” in the country due to its unpredictable currents and shallow water.

loire valley day tour,Loire river cruise

Loire Valley

Loire River rises in the Cevennes in the southeast of France and flows through Orleans, Tours, Angers, Nantes, and finally reaches the Bay of Biscay in St. Nazaire. However, not all of the river is navigable especially in the upper Loire River. The Canal Latéral à la Loire runs roughly parallel to the upper Loire River and it attracts many visitors for barge cursing. They often offer bicycles for visitors to explore local villages and sometimes a minibus to take them on excursions. A ride in a Hot-air balloon over vineyards can also be arranged with wine tasting and horseback riding. The Loire Valley is the largest area in France and is one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites. It has a rich history, remarkable landmarks and some famous wine producers including Muscadet, Chinon, Vouvray, Cheverny and Sancerre.

loire river, Loire River Cruise

Birds’ eye view of the Loire (Wikimedia commons)

Best time to visit

The best way to experience Loire River and embrace the beauty along the river bank is through Loire River Cruise. The best time to take the Loire River Cruise is from April to October because you will expect warm, pleasant weather in spring and late summer, with a bit of chilling and rainy weather towards the fall. Month of August will be the hottest and you will expect lots of visitors as they take time off from holidays. At the same time many smaller shops and restaurants will be closed. From April 2015, visitors can experience overnight cruises on the river through CroisiEurope and it offers cruises during Christmas and New Year Eve. Before then, only short daytime cruises are available.

Loire river cruise

Cruise Highlights

Nantes

During the Loire River Cruise, there are many highlights in the cities that it passes through. At the start point and finishing point for the cruise in Nantes, visitors can explore Les Machines de l’Ile, a remarkable regeneration of the old shipyard inspired by science fiction author Jules Verne, who was also born in Nantes. In the park, there is a three-story marine-themed carousel and a 40-foot wooden elephant that carries roughly 50 passengers and sprays water to passerby.

St. Nazaire, Angers

In St. Nazaire, visitors can visit one of the largest shipyard in France – STX France shipyard. Nearby is the Escal’ Atlantic, a former submarine base which has been transformed into a museum that explores historic ocean liners in St.Nazaire. In Angers, visitors will experience cobbled streets and plenty of cafes and bars and local orange-based liqueur Cointreau. You will also get a chance to visit city landmark, 13th – century castle of Angers with its unusual two-toned towers. It houses one of the largest Apocalypse tapestry in the world, 328-foot high. It was commissioned by the Duke of Anjou in 1370 and took seven years to complete. You will also get to tour around the home of French horsemanship in Saumur, Cadre Noir military riding academy which was founded in 1825. If you are lucky, you might see beautiful horses performing classical dressage movements.

guided tours, Loire River Cruise

Bouchemaine

During the Loire River Cruise, Bouchemaine is the main port because you can see more than 1000 chateaux of the Loire Valley. Chateau de Villandry, built in 1536, is one of the last largest castles built along the Loire. It is well-known for its six gardens which include a formal pleasure garden, tranquil water garden and decorative vegetable garden.The most famous chateau is the romantic Chateau d’Usse, which inspired Charles Perrault to write the classic fairytale story “Sleeping Beauty”. In recent years, it has inspired and helped Walt Disney to design his trademark theme park castle. Of course you cannot miss another highlight Situated on the Canal de Briare – Chateau de Fontainebleau. It is the only chateau to have been continuously occupied for eight centuries. Due to this long-range occupation, it offers a fascinating mix of architectural styles from years to years including painting from the Renaissance period and carved wooden celling in the 18th centuries.

 

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