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Tips

  • Harvest season, from September to November, is the best time to visit the regions, but it’s also the busiest, so a well-planned trip with early reservations is recommended.
  • The best way to take full advantage of the wine experience in France is through guided tours that can provide customized visits.
  • Car rental service is widely available throughout the country; drivers must be over 21 and must carry a license valid for at least a year. Drivers under 25 must pay additional insurance.
  • However, visitors should not drive after wine tastings.
  • France’s fast train service is a good option to complement your visit in the wine regions of neighboring nations like Monaco and Switzerland.
  • Tipping isn’t necessary in restaurants and bars; a 15% service charge is included in the price.
  • Precautions must be taken if you’re planning a trip to the French Alps, since the region is avalanche prone.
  • It’s convenient to buy a local SIM card for your phone to avoid extra charges, which can be very expensive.

 

 

Tops

  • France is home to several museums, national parks and UNESCO World Heritage Sites—perfect for learning about the regions’ nature, history and culture.
  • The Lavender Route in Provence is one of the most sought-after experiences; make sure to visit the first stop of the tour: the Musée de la Lavande in the village of Coustellet.
  • There are countless chateaux across the regions, and while a few of them welcome casual visitors, most require reservations in advance.
  • In May, a Tour de Fromage will add to your gourmet experience with the best selection of cheeses in the world.
  • France produces high quality olive oil in the southern regions—of greater Mediterranean influence—like Provence.
  • A visit to Normandy offers the best selection of oyster dishes and cider, and will also take you to one of the most significant sites in World War II history: the beaches where the D-Day landings took place, along with the many monuments, cemeteries and museums that honor the fallen troops.
  • Chocolate making is an art in France, so take the opportunity to revel in the many delicious flavors that gourmet shops offer. 

 

 

Text: Amura ± Photo: ©Vincent Bengold

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