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France Destination Guide

Exclusively Elegant Travel Since 1988

For more information, please call our Travel Consultants on:01244 897 771

Your guide from the Luxury Travel Experts


Welcome to the Elegant Resorts Destination Guide for France, created to help make your choice of luxury holiday as easy as possible. Here, you will find more detailed factual information about the destination you have selected.

If you require further information, not featured on this page, please call one of our Travel Consultants.

Overview+

Capital Paris
Language French
Time Difference 1 hours
Currency Euro
Voltage 220v

The north of France consists of flatlands licking the English Channel, while the west faces towards the Atlantic Coast and offers rolling hills, sandy beaches, quiet little harbour towns and a distinct Celtic flavour. The eastern part of France produces many famous wines including magnificent pinot noirs and chardonnays valued the world over.

The Alps are great for skiing in winter and hiking in summer, and the south – with its beautiful vistas, balmy climate and, of course, the wonderful Riviera – lures visitors year-round. The Cote d’Azur boasts an exceptional climate and its beautiful bays of azure-blue waters are the perfect backdrop for attractive seaside resorts while Evian, situated on the shores of Lake Geneva, is the home of Evian mineral water.

Tucked inside the Maritime Alps, between the French and Italian Rivieras, lies the principality of Monaco, famous for its casinos, luxury hotels and yachts – exclusivity and excess are the hallmarks of this, the second smallest country in the world.

In the south west of France, the Dordogne is one of the most quintessential French regions, whilst the Languedoc has its own language and culture. In the south of the Languedoc you'll find the majestic Pyrenees where you can hike and ski, while the towns of Toulouse and Montpelier should not be missed.

Highlights+
Events

Bastille Day, held annually on 14th July, is an incredibly important event in the French calendar, signifying the start of the French Revolution and the unity of the French people. Wherever you’re staying, join the crowds and soak up the lively atmosphere, enjoying colourful street parades, food, drink, music, dancing and magnificent displays of fireworks. Another world-famous event is Le Tour de France, a bike race that stretches over a staggering three weeks and covers around 3,500 kilometres. Starting points and routes vary each year, but the finish line is always at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris – just a stroll from our luxury city hotels.

The City

Whether you visit for the food, shopping or iconic sights, Paris offers the very best of everything. Don’t miss a trip up the striking Eiffel Tower, a stroll along the Champs-Élysées, a luxury cruise along the Seine or a glimpse of the famed Mona Lisa in the Louvre. Each of our luxury hotels offer an invaluable concierge service, able to inform you about the latest place to eat Michelin-starred cuisine, the hippest spot to drink cocktails, the newest gallery of cutting-edge art, or the best place for freshly-baked croissants. Paris is an ever-evolving city and a delight to explore, a place you are unlikely to forget.

The Countryside

Explore the sun-kissed corner of Provence, a heavenly region of picturesque countryside just inland from the Côte d’Azur. Explore old stone villages perched atop rolling hills, wander down trails of ancient sites, or enjoy the exquisite scent at a pretty lavender farm. Stride out on foot and discover a mix of russet ravines and windswept wetlands, interspersed with old olive groves and farming land. Once home to Rénoir, Cézanne and other great artists, these amazingly diverse landscapes came to life on their world-renowned canvases. End a sunny day of sightseeing, sport or relaxation with a feast of regional delights, washed down with chilled rosé wine.

The Coast

Picture vivid aqua seas, glistening golden sands and a ribbon of glamorous resorts and villages dotted along the coastline: welcome to the French Riviera, or Côte d’Azur, a place that’s been seducing visitors for many years. The vistas are beautiful and the climate typically Mediterranean, with endless summer sunshine and mild winters – an ideal destination to frequent year-round. Consider adding on a couple of nights in the über-chic principality of Monaco, tucked inside the Maritime Alps close to the Italian border. Acclaimed for its casinos, luxury hotels and superyachts, exclusivity and excess are the hallmarks of this glitzy enclave.

Outdoor Adventure in the Alps

Planning a ski trip? Offering well-groomed slopes catering for all abilities, the latest in lift technology, top-class instruction and a collection of hotels featuring the finest accommodation and facilities around, the French Alps should be a serious contender for your next skiing holiday. The Alps are also a glorious destination in the summer - enjoy an array of outdoor activities, from cross-country hiking and cycling to golf and stand-up paddle boarding.

Food

When it comes to fine dining, the French take the prize, their chefs and restaurants ranking among the world’s best. This exquisite cuisine continues into our featured hotels, where flavoursome food is served morning, noon and night. Enjoy rich sauces, succulent meat, delicious seafood, delicate pastries, delectable desserts and oven-warm bread, fresh from your local boulangerie. France is also well-known for its cheeses, with hundreds to choose from - including soft, creamy favourites, like brie and camembert, salty blue creations like Roquefort, and heaps of artisanal goats’ cheeses, sometimes flavoured with herbs.

Wine

Wine is produced in several regions throughout France, making it the world’s largest wine producer -including of some of the world’s most loved grapes such as Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Book a vineyard tour and watch the fascinating process, from the planting of the vineyards into the finished product. If you’re visiting the Alps, sample some interesting labels such as Beaujolais, Savoie and Jura or, in Provence, sample the region’s deliciously light rosés. Of course, our luxury hotels will offer handpicked bottles to pair perfectly with menu options, while local restaurants will offer carafes of regional wines ideal alongside the ‘plat du jour’.

Travel Gems+

Travel Planning
Our Travel Consultants can advise on, arrange and pre-book many things to enhance your holiday. This includes everything from spa reservations and dinner reservations, to a range of special experiences available in our featured resorts that you may not know about.

Climate+

France is such a dazzlingly varied country it really doesn’t matter what time of year you visit – you’re guaranteed a wonderful trip. However, if you’re looking to bask by a pool in the warm sunshine on the Mediterranean South, then the best months to visit are July to September.

Temperature Guide

These figures show monthly average maximum temperatures and monthly average rainfall for France.

  Temp °C Rain mm
January654
February746
March1152
April1445
May1862
June2157
July2454
August2351
September2057
October1659
November1059
December755

Getting There+

Flight Information
British Airways from London Heathrow to Paris and from London Heathrow and London Gatwick to Nice. UK regional departures and charter flights are also available.

Flight Time
From London Heathrow to Paris: 1 hour, 15 minutes.
From London Heathrow to Nice: 2 hours.

Travel Documentation+

Travelling With Children or Without an Adult

Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country (for example, South Africa) or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.

Visa and Advance Passenger Information

All passengers must ensure they have a valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.

Identification New Local Government Regulations - Local Laws and Customs You must be able to prove your identity either by providing documents when asked or within 4 hours at a police station. Identity documents can be a passport, a photo driving licence or other documentation provided by a government body. The full FCO travel advice for France can be accessed via this link: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france --

Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.

For up-to-date resort information, visit www.fco.gov.uk

Health+

Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs from your general practitioner or a specialist clinic as early as possible before travel. Those planning to become pregnant should discuss their travel plans with their healthcare provider to assess their risk of infection with Zika. For information about Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases (such as Dengue fever and Chikungunya), Lyme Disease (caused by tick bites), and to receive advice on mosquito bite avoidance measures, please visit http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/insect-tick-bite-avoidance/

In addition, we highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.

Visit the FCO website and select your destination country for the very latest travel advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice. Additional sources of information include: www.hpa.org.uk, http://nathnac.net, www.fco.gov.uk, www.hpa.org.uk and www.nathnac.org, your General Practitioner or a specialised clinic.

Talk to our Europe & North Africa Experts

Our dedicated Europe & North Africa Experts are ready to help you design your luxury holiday to France. Furthermore, we have 14 Travel Consultants who have personally visited France and can offer you their first-hand knowledge and experience.

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