France really does have it all; romance, sun, sea and sand, and best of all, delicious cuisine. Here, we’ve picked five great holidays destinations to inspire your French getaway
Thanks to its long sandy beaches and sunny Mediterranean climate, Marseille is an amazing city to visit for couples, groups of friends, families, and single travellers.
The second largest city in France has a rich and unique heritage, great cultural hotspots and an exceptional location in the South of France, between blue seas and steep hills, in an area known as the French Riviera.
Traditional sites like Notre-Dame de la Garde, the Saint-Jean and Saint-Nicolas forts in the Old Port, and the Panier district, teamed with the 20 odd museums, 42 theatres and 7,000 cinemas, ensure that visitors to Marseille have plenty to marvel when they’re done catching some sun on the beach.
The popular port city is the gateway of the Mediterranean basin, and its art, culture, history and architecture has led to it being appointed as European Capital of Culture in 2013.
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Brittany is a French destination that is proud of its history; the inhabitants in this delightful cultural centre of Northwest France, speak the local language, dress in customary clothing and keep alive the traditions as a mark of respect to the place’s past.
Brittany is a magical mix of rough landscapes, gorgeous coastline and charming towns, all of which are welcoming and open for visitors to experience local lifestyle.
In the summer head for the vibrant resort of St Malo with its lovely harbor, stunning architecture and chilled ambience, as performers and entertainers line the streets and the nearby restaurants and bars offer al fresco dining
For medieval features, river boat rides, and the enchanting La Fôret de la Broceliande (Merlin’s Forest), the picturesque walled town of Dinan, set upon the River Rance, is a must visit. Excellent shopping, delicious food and friendly locals make Brittany the exciting French destination it is today.
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You’ll find perfect blue skies and year-round snow in the mesmerising French Alps. This beautiful region offers a diverse range of ski resorts to choose from, whether you’re at a beginner stage or a seasoned pro, there are slopes here to suit all skill levels.
The popular Three Valleys area is home to resorts like Meribel, Les Menuires and Courchevel. Hotels, lodges and chalets line the stunning landscapes here, with everything from budget accommodation to luxury properties available for visitors.
The ski slopes at Chamonix are well-suited to expert skiers and snowboarding enthusiasts looking for a real thrill, surrounded by spectacular scenery.
Snow-filled fun aside, the French Alps offer an array of attractions and activities with sport centres, cinemas, swimming pools, bowling alleys and ice rinks dotted around the most resorts. To top that, the French cuisine here is culinary perfection.
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Located in the Pyrenees region of France, Toulouse is a city of character, charm and comfortable French living. Its many wonderful historical buildings and art and culture hotspots include the Saint Sernin Basilica, the Musée des Abbatoirs, and the French-Gothic Jacobin Convent with its ‘palm tree’ pillar, to name but a few.
Toulouse has been dubbed the ‘Ville Rose’ due to the beautiful glow of its buildings in the sunshine, which include stunning architectural wonders like Renaissance town houses, lining the city’s small streets and inviting squares.
Toulouse really is a destination for everyone – young people will love the university town for its inexpensive fresh fare and evening entertainments, while families can visit the exciting La Cité de l’espace, with its replica of the Mir Space Station, Imax 3D and 360° panoramic cinemas, or spend the day at the Aqualudia waterpark with enough pools and slides to get the adrenalin pumping.
The great thing about Toulouse is that the city is less than two hours from the UK; that’s a couple of hours and you could be enjoying the warm Mediterranean climate and relaxing with a glass of wine in one of the city’s snug brassieres.
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Let’s not forget the city of love, where romance is deeply ingrained, all the way from Champs-Élysées, to the Eifel Tower and right back down to the cosy cafes that line the French capital’s streets.
When you want a break from getting loved up, visit Notre Dame Cathedral - one of the world’s most famous churches that is well revered in the world of architecture - often considered the best example of the gothic architecture that dominates Europe.
The city’s pretty flower gardens, quaint cobbled streets and many snug brasseries, as well as a relaxing stroll up Montmarte Hill to watch the sunset, will guarantee to keep you busy on an unforgettable getaway to our continental cousin.
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Where are your favourite places to holiday in France? Tell us in the comments below or tweet us @FemaleFirst_UK