Compiègne: History and Charm an Hour from Paris

Imagine you’ve just spent a few days visiting Paris when you get the urge to get out of the city for a day. You don’t want to go too far, but you’d like to experience a smaller town, yet one with history, beauty, and things to do. You’ll find all of this in the town of Compiègne, about an hour’s drive (or 40 minutes by train) northeast of Paris. You might not have ever heard about it unless you’re a…

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Nice: A Warm Heart in France

Each time you visit a place it sets down new, deeper layers in your soul. My most recent trip to Nice, France, my third, was like this for me. The first two times I’d zipped through like so many tourists do, in a day or an afternoon. This last time I had the opportunity in a long weekend to soak it in, to wander the maze of Italian-flavored streets, their candy-colored buildings towering overhead. Nice is France’s fifth largest city.…

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Hidden Beaches in Brittany, France

Up on Brittany’s northwest coast, you’ll find one of the most beautiful coastlines in France. The Côte de Granit Rose, or the Pink Granite Coast, is waiting for you, with beaches you may have never heard of. I call them hidden beaches because many people outside of France don’t know about them, but they are very popular with French visitors. To attract you further, these towns and beaches are smaller, cooler, and less crowded than the larger beaches of the…

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Paris: Magnetic Montmartre

If you have seen the popular movie, “Amelie,” you may have been drawn into the character’s world by the unique charm of the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris. Today, this is one of the top “must-see” areas of Paris, dominated by the Sacré Coeur Basilica. An equal attraction is the area surrounding it, which maintains a village charm, and the stunning views of the city from the summit. Montmartre is the highest point in Paris. As soon as you get off…

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3 Days in Paris

Paris . . . you’ve always wanted to go. you’ve just learned that you can sneak in a 3-day side-trip as an add-on to your Provence or Loire Valley vacation. Or your business trip somewhere else in Europe. What can you do in three days? Actually, a lot. But you need to ask yourself some questions. What is most important to you? Food? Museums? Walking all over? Antiques? The Best Of? Answering that question is a vital first step to…

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Northern France: The Inland Tour

If you read last week’s post, part one on Northern France, you saw highlights of the Opal Coast, the north coast of France facing the English Channel. But there are also unforgettable places to lure you inland. There will certainly be a few surprises, too. One of the most attractive features of inland Northern France is the countryside. Rolling hills and farmland beckon you with a slice of a peaceful lifestyle during your stay. You can recharge your batteries and…

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