French Cheese: A Brief Cheese-Lover’s Guide

What began centuries ago in a French monastery is now one of France’s largest exports and revered by the  French as well. French cheese is one of the country’s notable accomplishments, with over 350 primary types. With all these choices, you’ll probably want a cheese crash course. First, your guide to enjoying cheese (for those who just want to enjoy), then a quick overview for those who want to enjoy and learn more. Practical Guide to Cheese-Eating in France In…

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La Rochelle: Medieval Port on the Atlantic

La Rochelle is a city on France’s west coast, a city whose port was an important trading and fishing center from the 11th to 14th centuries. During this time, the city was protected by towers at the port. Today, you can see and visit these icons of the city. This seaside town has a rich maritime and Huguenot background with museums to suit history-lovers. From La Rochelle hundreds of French immigrants went to Quebec in 17th and 18th centuries. Many…

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Need Ideas for your Trip to France?

Where did summer go? Did you make that trip to France? No? What about next year? Here are some ideas that will get you thinking. And planning. For next year. Or even this fall. Today I’m bringing back some classic Oliver’s France posts that you might not have seen before. After you read a few of them, you’ll be itching to dig out your passport. (Just click on the italicized title to read the post.) So, let’s start in Paris,…

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20 Packing Tips for Your Trip to France

Great Packing tips and one great freebie for cheap travel everywhere! See the link at the bottom of the post! Before You Pack 1.       Know your airline’s policy about weight and number of bags 2.      Have a list. Believe me, it saves stress. Each time you return from a trip, you’ll be able to revise your list and it gets increasingly helpful! 3.      Think about setting up a small health kit that you can just grab when you’re ready to…

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A French Alps Vacation

If nature is in your soul, the French Alps are your paradise, with unparalleled beauty everywhere you turn. That’s why, for hikers, skiers, climbers, paragliders, campers, and walkers, the French Alps are a top destination and Europe’s highest mountain chain. This is the case in summer as well as winter. If lovely villages with mountain charm are more your speed, there are plenty of those as well. Or bigger towns. Or thermal resorts. The highest mountain in the French Alps,…

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15 Things to do in Paris in the Rain

Paris had record rainfall in the month of May this year. The rest of France was not spared, either. I was in the Languedoc region in late May and took my turn dodging raindrops. The weather in Europe can be touchy. Fortunately, the sun shines frequently in the late spring and summer, what do you do in Paris when the météo doesn’t cooperate? Here is a list of 15 things to do when it rains (and I purposely avoided the…

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