The lovely Christmas markets of Northern France are a great reason to visit this delightful region for a pre-holiday getaway. The markets here have a very special atmosphere and will certainly get you into the Christmas spirit. Of course the shopping is fun with a mix of products you know and love, and some that are more French in flavour. This means you can often find items you won’t see in the UK or elsewhere in Europe . What a great opportunity to purchase some unique gifts for family and friends. Being France you’re of course assured of finding wine, beer, chocolate and cheese at bargain prices.
Here’s a list of a few markets that are close to the car ferry port in Calais so from the minute you arrive on the Dover ferry, you’ll be only a few more minutes from a great shopping experience.
Four rocky islands sit off the coast of Marseilles’ Old Port, but two in particular have considerable historic appeal. Those familiar with the Count of Monte Cristo will recognize the first worth visiting, Isle d’If, a jutting outpost-turned-19th century prison, where author Alexandre Dumas’ father was once wrongfully imprisoned. The second, Ratonneau, is larger, longer, haunting and beautiful: a nature preserve dotted with forests, coves and wildlife overseen by an old, abandoned hospital on the top of its highest cliffs. These two comprise a memorable day-long escape amidst any tour of southern France, and I recently had the opportunity to experience them for myself.
For many people, there is no better way to enjoy a vacation than on a boat whether it be sailing, yachting or on a cruise. France is often considered to be the pastime’s epicenter. The French Riviera is home to a multitude of celebrated cities that need to be high on the list of anyone considering taking a boating trip in the area.
If you’re thinking about touring the south of France by sea, here are eight places you can’t miss:
I’ve been nibbling my way through a recently published book on the fascinating history of cheese in France. The Whole Fromage is an entertaining journey through the French countryside by Author, Kathe Lison, who brings the reader along on her pursuit of the world’s most delectable cheeses.
Born and raised in the cheese-centric state of Wisconsin, you might think that Kathe had a pallet for exotic cheeses from an early age. But like you and me, she was raised on Kraft Mac and Cheese, and considered Babybell rounds in the red mesh bag to be exotic fare. That all changed on a fateful trip to Paris where the world of delectable French cheeses revealed itself.
The lovely island of Guernsey, a unique blend of French and British culture is located in the English Channel, 30 miles off the northwestern coast of France and only a 50-minute flight from London Gatwick. Guernsey is a self-governing British Crown dependency, that has been influenced by nearby France through the centuries. Why am I telling you this? Personally I feel it is this fusion of French and British cultures that makes Guernsey so unique and attractive. The language spoken is English, but there is still a Guernsey patois French spoken by some of the population. You’ll also find the majority of the roads are named in French. Every aspect of island life is a charming Anglo-Franco fusion.
One of the most rewarding aspects of barge cruising in France is that you have a chance to experience all the exotic French cuisine along your route. You can go ashore and explore fine restaurants, stop by out-of-the way cafes, and perhaps even learn a few tricks of your own. But what if the fine […]
I am so happy to be back in Alsace, especially here in Strasbourg. I have not been here since the 90’s when while teaching at Boston Latin Academy, I was part of a French teacher exchange hosted by the Boston Public Schools and the Boston Strasbourg Sister City Association of which I am a trustee. This […]
Popular work opportunities in France for adventurous language travellers If you’re travelling to France as a student from an EU country, you will also have the option of finding work while you’re there. All EU nationals can find employment in France and obtain residence permits if needed. You don’t always need an extensive knowledge of […]
Paris, often called the City of Lights, has a number of iconic attractions to visit. The 7th and 8th arrondissement are home to the famous Champs-Élysées, the Invalides as well as the Eiffel Tower. Even if you have already been to Paris once, it is well worth visiting the 7th and 8th arrondissement again. Here […]
All of my favorites are included! Just in time for the new iPhone 5, free apps for the very ‘best of ‘ are being offered free of charge for Barcelona, London, New York, Paris, and Rome by Lonely Planet, one the most respected travel publishers in the world. Lonely Planet has earned the reputation of […]
Top 10 Places To Have Lunch In Paris On A Budget Paris holds a very special place in my heart; the scenery, people and of course the food. Now we all know that a trip to Paris can be expensive. The cost of food on top of the cost of tickets to Paris can add […]
The Singles Guide to Surviving Paris, the City of Love It always struck me as particularly one-sided to regard Paris as the domain of lovers, as little more than a love nest with a big tower and lights. Paris may be the ultimate honeymoon destination, but it is also a haven for singles interested in […]
Consider a city break this year to make your summer vacation sizzle with exciting activities. Most people travel in summer to get away from it all. They want to be close to nature, by the ocean, or in the mountains, away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and modern communications. But while city […]
5 Top Wine Bars of Paris Paris is a great hub for a range of clubs and bars. Many Parisians visit local bars and cafes to meet their friends and enjoy the city nightlife. Most of the city monuments and roads remain illuminated throughout the night and many tourists prefer to take part in midnight […]
Have you ever watched an episode of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives and wished you were sitting in that red Camaro riding along with Guy Fieri, nibbling and chatting your way down the road? Or perhaps you’ve watched a PBS special and fantasized about exploring a wilderness region with the host. Well perk up…. there’s a […]
The UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites now sits at over 900 – but how many are truly awe-inspiring, must-see places to visit before you die? We’ve whittled the list down to just five, ranging from a city carved from rock to a world-famous mausoleum…
France is about to launch its very first national food festival. In celebration of the abundance of exquisite local ingredients available throughout France in the fall, restaurants in Paris and all across the country will introduce Restaurant Week menus beginning on September 19th.
Here’s a terrific Spring promotion being offered by Open Skies the all business class airlines. Purchase an airline ticket from New York or Washington DC to Paris and receive a free connecting train ticket to one of 14 cities throughout France. Here’s your chance to experience the beautiful French countryside with ease, as a private […]
We’ve selected our favorite inexpensive accommodations in three of our favorite European destinations, London, Paris and Budapest to help you stretch your vacation budget. When you think about the term ‘cheap accommodation’, what comes to mind? Visions of dingy shared hostel dorms with iron bunk beds and thirty people to each bathroom? Subsistence meals from […]