Hidden gems in France
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    Hidden gems

Annecy

Annecy

Coiled between lake and mountains, Annecy deserves its nickname of "The Venice of the Alps". This harmonious city allows you to travel through time, from prehistory to the present day, before following in the tracks of the Princes of Savoy and eating next to the purest lake of Europe, while enjoying the numerous festivals and cultural animations. The city is also turned towards sports: the ski resorts are near the city and accessible by bus, and a biking trail goes all around the lake and lets you explore the shores.
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Bergerac

Bergerac

Bergerac, in the heart of the Périgord Dordogne region, is an ancient and compact city, characterised by its elegant medieval and Renaissance buildings. Gourmet restaurants, street entertainment and the fact that the whole city can be explored on foot are all part of its charm. Bergerac is renowned for its wine, and a short trip to the outskirts of the city reveals a landscape of vineyards that produce some of the world’s finest vintages.
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Biarritz

Biarritz

They all used to come here, from Napoleon III to Frank Sinatra – Biarritz used to be the Monte Carlo of the Atlantic coast but with the time, the glamour faded. Thanks to windsurfing and other water sports, however, the city has rejuvenated. It now is the perfect destination for a relaxing weekend break, completed by some of the best food around. And there is no need to rush: the city is fairly small and you can easily see everything around, even during a short visit. One thing worth to set aside time for is the morning market in Les Halles: try the city’s own mamia, fresh curd sheep’s milk.
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Brest

Brest

Welcome to Brest - the city with over a thousand years of history. Located on the tip of the French region of Brittany, Brest has been one of the key cities in countless numbers of battles and is currently home to one of France’s three naval bases. Take a tour and discover a city that is known for its breathtaking landscapes and scenic coastal areas. Take a boat ride to the nearby seahorse-shaped islands of Ouessant and Molene for an unforgettable experience.
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Carcassonne

Carcassonne

Located in South of France, Carcassonne is situated at the crossing of two major routes: from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean coast and from the heart of France to Spain, both used since antiquity. It is a beautiful and diversified region but the city itself has enough to fulfil your curiosity. The medieval fortified Cité is a UNESCO world heritage site. No wonder that Carcassone is home to a unique historical and cultural past. If you add the local traditional dishes, the hospitality of its inhabitants and some of the best vineyards in the south of France, your stay will be a most memorable one!
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Grenoble

Grenoble

Grenoble is the gateway to the Alps and a geographic crossing where the rivers Isère and Drac meet. With Switzerland to the north, Italy to the east and Provence to the south, the city is surrounded by three mountain chains. It is a cosmopolitan city with cafés, museums and restaurants. Best of all, you can see the Alps from almost every street corner.
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La Rochelle

La Rochelle

La Rochelle is more than just a seaport on the Atlantic Ocean. The city is an inevitable place to visit on the coast as one of the largest French harbor cities in terms of business and tourism. With its 1,000 years of history, it is also one of the best-kept secrets in the region. You will be surprised by its architectural heritage, its unique atmosphere, the diversity of its museums and its eclectic nightlife. The area is quite warm thanks to the Gulf Stream, on a par with the French Riviera!
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Le Cap d'Agde Méditerranée

Le Cap d'Agde Méditerranée

Destination Cap d'Agde Mediterranean Cape of Agde Mediterranean Alliance between land and sea Cap of Agde Mediterranean is located In the south of France, in Occitania, a region that enjoys 300 days of sunshine a year; everyone agrees that it is a great holiday destination. It is made up of 3 complimentary seaside resorts:Cape of Agde, Vias and Portiragnes, with fine sand and volcanic beaches, beaches bordered by pine forests, and an authentic hinterland with towns and villages with a well kep heritage, with living tradtions and varied arts and crafts professions. Featuring Pézenas, the town of Molière, Agde, the Ancient Phocaean trading post or Montagnac, the great mediaeval fair town. The Canal du Midi is the backbone of the Cap d'Agde Mediterranean passing through it from one end to the other. There are so many entertainment and cultural events on offer that you’ll keep wanting to come back throughout the year. It also offers 20km of coastline, partly wild and partly developed fine sandy beaches, a natural environment made up of parks, pine forests, closely protected marine areas, historical monuments, astonishing heritage, top quality sporting facilities and is a permanent whirl of activity.
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Lille

Lille

The title of European Capital of Culture awarded to Lille over a decade ago was not the height of its ability, but rather a humble beginning, for in the years to follow Lille has grown to become a cultural hub second to none in northern France – and, some would argue, even beyond. There is a strong Flemish flavour in Lille, which manifests itself literally, through Lillois cuisine, and figuratively, through the ornate buildings of the charming old town (Vieux Lille).
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Limoges

Limoges

Overlooking a river among green hills, Limoges has long been synonymous with the finest porcelain, while its tradition of enamelware goes back even further. Many sights and attractions are centered around this proud history. Those industries brought immense wealth to the town, which reflects in many of the town's impressive medieval buildings built of local rose-tinted granite. The air of prosperity and style with good shops and restaurants, plenty to do and always more to discover.
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Montpellier

Montpellier

Montpellier has become one of Europe’s newest holiday destinations. This is due to the combination of its proximity to the Mediterranean, its beautiful medieval city core and a vibrant nightlife (a quarter of its citizens are students). It is also a good destination for adventure seekers – the mountains of Cévennes are only an hour’s drive away.
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Nîmes

Nîmes

Nîmes is one of the oldest cities in Europe. It is also the city of spring, named after the Roman God Nemausus. In recent years Nîmes has been rediscovered as a weekend destination, thanks to, in large part, its beauty, rich architectural heritage and proximity to both the Mediterranean and Provence. There are also many exciting restaurants in the city, including Aux Plaisirs des Halles by Nîmes’ large indoor food market.
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Pau

Pau

Nestled in the corner of rural south-west France stands Pau, the capital of the Béarn region and bastion of history and culture. The town occupies a unique geographical position in the foothills of the Pyrenees. With its awe-inspiring views of the mountain range, Pau is only a few hundred kilometres from the major towns of Bourdeaux and Toulouse and even closer to Spain and the Atlantic Ocean. A springboard to sunny beaches, snow-capped mountains, Pau’s pretty streets and excellent gastronomy are enough to ensure leaving will be difficult.
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Perpignan

Perpignan

Located in the deep south of France, Perpignan is the capital of the Pyrénées Orientales. Its geographical and cultural identity is turned naturally to Spanish Catalonia since it's a border city, looking out onto the Mediterranean coast and the highest mountains of the French Pyrenees at once. Perpignan is a busy place greatly influenced by Mediterranean cultures and benefiting from 2500 hours of sun per year - no wonder Salvador Dali saw it as the “Centre of the World”.
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Poitiers

Poitiers

With 2000 years of history, dozens of monuments, impressive medieval streets and beautiful boulevards, Poitiers boasts a rich and fascinating heritage. But the city has more to offer than just memories: everything from trendy cafes and cool bars to a lively student crowd keep it young and vibrant.
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Reims

Reims

Reims is one of France’s most vibrant and cosmopolitan cities. It offers visitors a great choice of fine restaurants, brasseries and shops, lively nightlife, concerts, festivals and cultural events, and of course, world-famous Champagne houses to visit and sample the local nectar. With tree-lined avenues, elegant squares and a magnificent Gothic style cathedral that played host to the coronation of several kings of France, Reims is a city for all occasions.
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Rodez

Rodez

Located at the foot of the Massif Central and less than a two-hour drive from the Mediterranean, Rodez is the capital of the Aveyron Region. This picturesque region is one of the best kept secrets in France for foreigners, offering more attractions than you would expect. Rodez is surrounded by several village communities which, all rich in cultural and historical assets, contribute to making the town a prime tourist destination.
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Strasbourg

Strasbourg

With the tiny rivers and narrow alleys, extraordinarily varied architecture and the poetry which emerges from the magnificent historical centre, the Alsatian capital is simply delightful. A rich cuisine, a plentiful cultural life and position in the heart of Europe are also important parts of this city. Both in winter and summer, Strasbourg, which is classified as a world heritage site by the United Nations, is one of France’s most attractive and romantic destinations.
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Toulon

Toulon

Toulon is a genuine incarnation of Provence, as it is not one of those garishly painted souvenir shops some other Riviera towns have turned into, smelling of synthetic lavender and selling unauthentic goods. This area features wonderful smells for real: of real lavender and thyme in the market places, of salty sea breeze that wafts the whole coastline, and of a vibrant yet relaxing atmosphere that attracts locals and people alike.
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Toulouse

Toulouse

Toulouse can only be evoked with emotion and excitement. The city seduces and amazes the visitor with its cultural dynamism and its youth shining a new light over an otherwise traditional and typically French town. It resolutely is a charming and vibrant city, where tourists and locals alike can enjoy a certain nonchalance, while following the river from one activity to the other. Tinted in pink and lighten up by the Southern sun, Toulouse is a true gem in the French province.
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Tours

Tours

The bright, lively capital of the Loire Valley region is nestled between two rivers: the Loire and the Cher, with the picturesque Vieux Tours old quarter lying on the long, narrow peninsula. Brilliant modern architecture contrasts with an array of historic buildings, with fine food and wine famed all over France.
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