French Coastal Secrets: #1 La Ciotat

La Ciotat. Wouldn’t it be nice to enjoy the Riviera without the price and snob-appeal? To taste the South of France coastline without the packed beaches, the secret is to aim smaller. The next few posts will feature French coastal towns you might not have ever heard of. You can discover many of them tucked in between renowned destinations like Nice and St. Tropez. They are hidden treasures along the French Riviera, worth a serious look if you want a…

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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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Marseille and Beyond

Marseille, the third largest city in France (and its oldest city) has a sunbaked maritime atmosphere all its own. It’s true Provence with the sunny charm you’d expect. Marseille is also historic (two millennia), and it’s close by numerous interesting places you can access easily by car or train. Suggestions for a car circuit will follow. If you’re interested in an overview of the city and its history, there is a hop-on-hop-off bus available. The city has a metro system…

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A Tour Through the Luberon: Provence, France

When you think of Provence, France, you might think of lavender fields, olive groves, rocky outcrops topped with walled villages. You’re thinking of an area called the Luberon, at the foot of the Luberon mountain range. This area was put on the tourist map by Peter Mayle with his book, A Year in Provence. People discovered the villages of the Luberon area and were enchanted. Pure Provence! Your Itinerary in the Luberon Here is a circuit of 8 towns you…

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A Tour Through Western Brittany

In my last post, I gave you a suggested circuit through eastern Brittany. This time, we’ll cover western Brittany, where you’ll encounter wild, rocky coastlines, lush pastureland, and unforgettable villages. If you’re starting off in Paris, think about renting a car in St. Brieuc to return in Vannes or Lorient (to the south at the end of your circuit.) This will save a few hours of drive time from Paris to Brittany. That way you’ll focus on your experiences instead…

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Highlights of Eastern Brittany France

Travel to the northwest corner of France and you’ll encounter Brittany. It is the land mass that reaches out into the Atlantic Ocean and touches the English Channel to the north. This region contains the most westerly towns and coastlines in France. Brittany brims with picturesque towns, untamed coasts, pastoral green fields, and ruins of prehistory. This post will give you a traveling circuit among some of the most interesting places in the eastern part of Brittany. A Touch of…

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