France has been the world’s most popular tourist destination for the last 20 years, and this fact comes as no surprise when you take into account the country’s picturesque landscapes, world-famous gastronomy, rich history and status as a cultural and fashion hub of the region. Bordered by the Mediterranean and the Atlantic, and comfortably sandwiched between other European nations such as Spain, Belgium and Italy, the climate in France varies depending on the place, being Mediterranean in the south and featuring cooler winters and hot summers in more northerly regions. The country is divided into 7 distinct cultural regions including the ancient Celtic lands of the Great West, and South-western and South-eastern France.
The main international airport in the country is Roissy – Charles de Gaulle, but domestic and some inter-European flights land at Orly, also in Paris, and there are a number of smaller regional airports.
The official language of France is French, though several regional languages such as Breton and Basque are spoken in different areas of the country. The official currency is the Euro (€).
France boasts an astounding plethora of attractions and historic sites to visit. From the icons of Paris – such as the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame – to the monuments of Nantes and the stunning beaches of the Côte d’Azur, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to planning your French itinerary. While cities such as Lyon and Toulouse are vibrant and fascinating places to visit, you should also be sure to devote some time to exploring the country’s rustic medieval villages and ancient castles. Make your way to Provence to sample some of that region’s world-famous rosé wines, explore the fertile emerald hills of the Dordogne and visit the breath-taking coastline of Normandy, which is home to many museums and memorials commemorating the events of D-Day, the Allied invasion which took place on 6 June 1944.
Honeymooning couples visiting France will certainly not be stuck for romantic activities to try, whether you are strolling down the historic boulevards of Paris, enjoying wine tasting in the Loire Valley or spending the night in a former castle turned luxury hotel. More adventurous couples may want to explore the country’s scenic national parks, but if you are interested in art and culture, pay a visit to some of France’s world-famous Art Museums, such as the Picasso Museum and the Musée du Louvre, both situated in Paris.
The best time to visit France is in the months of June and September, as the weather should be pleasant, everything will be open for business and the roads should be uncongested. Make sure you avoid the school holidays as museums and attractions will be particularly busy during these periods.
France is one hour ahead of the UK.