Things to do in France

Amble, ramble or
hike yourself happy
Walking is to France what butter is to toast: a perfect match, and there’s over 100,000km of walking trails that criss-cross the country in all directions.
Alpine terrain varies greatly and the Alps offer both ‘The Sound of Music’-esque rambling as well as opportunities to conquer the mighty Mont Blanc and his surrounds. The Mercantour National Park is an incredible area for walking that takes you on a magical mystery tour through ancient forest, up rocky inclines, and along icy river valleys with donkeys to carry your bags and very few crowds, while the Pyrenees has a rougher beauty than its loftier counterpart, but is still a snow-capped Shangri-La great for snowshoeing and exploring isolated mountain thoroughfares.

For those who like a bit of history with their hiking, the Loire Valley is a region jam packed with palaces and elegant chateaus and where steep is defined by gentle rolling farmland. As well as wine of course. For one of France's most underrated and exquisite walking regions, Poitou-Charentes is utterly charming. And for sun - well, the Riviera is rambling paradise that always begs a sunhat.
Feel the adrenaline rush
People think of mountain adventure in France and immediately jump to skiing, but there's a glorious gamut of exciting experiences to grapple with
From adventure - trekking, caving and mountain climbing, to adrenalin - canyoning, whitewater sports and paragliding - not to mention snowshoeing, an increasingly popular way to make the most of winter's snow if you can't ski, France is packed to the rafters with activities that add an extra dimension to exploring the country's diverse terrain and a fun way to escape the crowds too.
A history of fine food & drink
The French…uber-stylish? Indescribably sexy? Rude? Never have more stereotypes been thrown at a nation, but you can scrap that, what makes the French so French is definable by their lifestyle, namely eating, drinking and being fabulously cultured.
If you’re a gluten-intolerant, dairy-free vegetarian, you have our deepest sympathies – bread, cheese and charcuterie form the backbone of any French spread and Provence’s markets, a smorgasbord of local specialities like Camargue salt and saucisson d’Arles, are a sensory feast for any foodie. And then there’s le vin, such a prominent feature of French culture that you can plan an entire itinerary around it, particularly among the never-ending vineyards of the Loire Valley and the Languedoc. Touring the country’s numerous ‘villages perches’, hilltop villages, will open your eyes to an incredible architectural heritage that encompasses features of baroque, renaissance and neoclassic, and art’s your bag head to the Riviera’s Musee Renoir, the evocative former home of Renoir himself. Go on a vacation that combines culture and cuisine on the Riviera to experience all its delicious flavours.

Our top France Vacation

Mercantour Park self catering gite, France

Mercantour Park self catering gite, France

Beautifully located accommodation in the Mercantour, France

From 518 per week (sleeps 2)
Accommodation
Helpdesk
Hello. If you'd like to chat about France or need help finding a vacation to suit you we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.
Tour on two wheels
Think cycling in France, think Tour de France, but cycling doesn't have to be all about endurance and saddle sores and France is the perfect spot to slow down and smell the flowers
The Dordogne, with its lush green valleys and prehistoric sites is like a giant outdoor museum, and then there’s the Loire Valley, ‘the Garden of France’, a place of orchards, grand chateaus and fertile vineyards where you can cycle, stop and wine-taste to your heart’s content.  And of course, while cycling in Provence you can pack your panniers full of Provençal yumminess.
Written by Polly Humphris
Photo credits: [Page banner: Hervé] [Amble, ramble or hike yourself happy: Guilhem Vellut] [A history of fine food & drink: savagecat] [Feel the adrenalin rush: Ruth Hartnup] [Tour on two wheels: Steve Jurvetson]
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