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The perfect French holiday?

(76 Posts)
ElizabethinherGermanGarden Wed 21-Aug-19 12:38:49

Next summer, I get to pick our holiday (couple) and I want to practise my French.

If you've been somewhere lovely in France, tell me why it's the best - I need inspiration.
Ta smile

lots33 Wed 21-Aug-19 22:08:21

We’re in France atm, it’s amazing! We are in the Languedoc region, at the base of the Pyrénées, near the Spanish border. Thoroughly recommend! We are in a lovely village - Saint-Génis-des-Fontaines- near Collioure, Argelès Sur mer, Perpignan and near gorgeous coves in French and Spanish Catalonia. It is beautiful, hot and quiet and near the Mediterranean coast.

drivingtofrance Wed 21-Aug-19 22:11:35

Bordeaux is a good city to visit. If you wanted to fly drive you could fly into Bordeaux and then rent a car to head over to the Dordogne via St Emilion, Bergerac.. (wine grin )

Awks Wed 21-Aug-19 22:32:35

Echo Ille de Re . Just beautiful

derryrose Wed 21-Aug-19 22:34:00

Just back from a little village near Chamonix. Loads to do and breathtaking scenery

SillyBub Wed 21-Aug-19 22:37:42

Waves at @lots33

We are in the same area and absolutely loving it.

ElizabethinherGermanGarden Wed 21-Aug-19 22:48:46

Argh! So many choices! Your holidays all sound fab and I will have a lovely time researching them all. Thank you!

teachermam Wed 21-Aug-19 22:53:06


pinkhousesarebest Wed 21-Aug-19 23:03:22

We live here. There is no end of choice. Love in particular Cap Ferret and Cassis but also Finistère and Biarritz. Depends what you are looking for. We are surfing atm in Hossegor which is great for older D.C, but the Vendée / Brittany/ Ariège were all firm favorites when the children were little.

KitchenDancefloor Wed 21-Aug-19 23:31:05

We have loved both the Brittany and Bordeaux / Atlantic coast areas but have always lucked out with the weather.

Normandy in the drizzle is grim.

If you want good weather you have to go south (La Rochelle at least) so either make a road trip of it and brave the roadside toilets or fly.

Seriously France, as a friend, please sort the toilet situation out!

KitchenDancefloor Wed 21-Aug-19 23:38:10

Also... In France atm and my favourite place is Aldi! The wine is so cheap, even with the horrendous exchange rate. We'll be bringing back a couple of cases of the local, delicious white for about £3 a bottle. Sorry to derail. I won't get started on the quality of the cheese either <drools on screen>.

Have fun choosing your holiday!

Glasscrab Wed 21-Aug-19 23:45:17

We had a wonderful time renting a big old house in the Gers last year, near Auch. Ravishing, very untouristy, lots of historical interest, close to the Pyrenees and Toulouse, several national parks, and the best brocantes I’ve ever seen.

Cotonshaded Wed 21-Aug-19 23:45:28

Alsace- the Riesling vineyards, beautiful small villages like Riquewihr that are like something out of a Disney movie, lovely french/German cuisine and shop across the Rhine to Germany for a bit of variety - loved it!

Cotonshaded Wed 21-Aug-19 23:46:38

Hop not shop🙄!

Branleuse Wed 21-Aug-19 23:51:21

I love cathar country. The foothills of the pyrenees. So stunningly beautiful, yet more real, less dripping with money than the alps

coatlessinspokane Wed 21-Aug-19 23:57:45

I see that you want to practise your french so you’ll need somewhere not so touristy or at least filled with French tourists not foreign ones. Instead of Annecy go to Aix Les Bains, lovely lakes, more French spoken.

Or try Chambery. A proper french alpine town and near to Annecy and Aix. Very friendly too.

Applesandrhurbarb Thu 22-Aug-19 08:58:07

We are just home from the Alps region and stayed not far from La Clusaz. Very few English holiday makers (plenty French though) Central enough to travel to Annecy, Chamonix, Geneva etc. Plenty of opportunities to walk or drink coffee and eat ice cream, whatever your in the mood to do that day. We drove, rather uneventful trip down but came home via Paris and, whilst I've been before, I fell in love with it all over again and can't wait to go back. Paris at night under the sparkly Eiffel Tower sitting on the Champ de Mars ... Would have been utter bliss had we taken a picnic!!

lots33 Thu 22-Aug-19 10:36:32

@SillyBug hello! Where are you staying? Any recommendations- we are here for another 10 days. We’ve driven to port-bou in Spain and went to Argeles-sur-Mer so far. Kids loved Argeles-sur-Mer and I’m excited to see collioure.

BoogleMcGroogle Thu 22-Aug-19 22:39:50

The Dordogne is beautiful. And France at its Frenchest I think. We love the area around Montignac/ Sarlat. Beautiful countryside and towns and divine food. And lots of sunshine.

We have a chalet in the Haute Savoie and go skiiing and for summer walking. Also lovely but somehow not as typically French. If your bf enjoys driving though, it's pretty fun around our neck of the woods ( Les Memises/ Val d'Abondance). We had some super holidays there pre-kids. All cheese, views and genipi. It's totally different now, although still lovely 😊

SJane48S Fri 23-Aug-19 07:55:51

I would second the Riviera but it would be hot in Summer and if you’re not keen on heat maybe best avoided! The places I’ve liked best are further South (Riviera, Carcasonne, Serlat). Depends on how much heat you are comfortable with really! Brittany is pretty and will be cooler - I once camped on the Isle de Batz off Roscoff - very pretty little island with wild ponies and empty beaches - there is a boat that takes you over). It does have quite a few similarities to Cornwall though!

SJane48S Fri 23-Aug-19 07:58:39

Oops! Sarlat not Serlat!

ElizabethinherGermanGarden Fri 23-Aug-19 08:54:12

There Will Be No Camping! I have spoken...

Thank you though for all the suggestions. I do like the idea of Brittany very much (love the bits set in Brittany in Possession so am tempted by Finisterre and Nantes) but there's no way there will be any tent involvement.

Vasya Fri 23-Aug-19 08:56:35

The Dordogne Valley. Exquisite scenery, loads of interesting things to do (probably the best area in the world for prehistoric sites, incredible castles, formal gardens, food markets), gorgeous food, reliable weather, stuffed to the gunnels with beautiful little medieval towns. I've been going to that area for years and I honestly think it might be paradise on earth.

SJane48S Fri 23-Aug-19 10:29:38

Quite right too re camping - I was 20 and tbh it was a step up from rough sleeping quite often when backpacking! The 49 year old me wouldn’t even contemplate it! That said it was a beautiful island and I’m sure they’d be a hotel on it!

Hoppinggreen Fri 23-Aug-19 10:34:34

My favourite part of France is Annecy and The Alps
We have friends in Courcheval so we did a week in Annecy and then a week up there with them. Everything was £££££ but as we had free accommodation for half the holiday it was ok
I also love the French/Spanish border

Labassecour Fri 23-Aug-19 11:30:00

I agree those are much the best bits of Possession, OP. Mind you, I have never been to Brittany to see for myself.

Another area of France I love is the Morvan in Burgundy. Easily accessible from Paris, but it feels far more remote -- mysterious and beautiful, has wonderful walking, climbing, water activities, and enormously interesting archeology and architecture.

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