Best Travel Guide for France

Mini Travel Guide: France


Must Do

Attend a Festival

Almost any time of year, there are festivals in every little town and hamlet in France. Plan your trip accordingly and you could attend some of the biggest ones that draw international attendees or small town celebrations that focus on the community and traditional dances, music, and food.

Watch or participate in a Greve

A Greve, or a strike, is a quintessential part of French culture. It's how they communicate with their government and other people what they want to change or stay the same. While I was studying, my university went on strike for almost the whole second semester, complete with piles of chairs blocking building doorways, marches across town, and sit-ins in the town square! Marches and demonstrations are typically docile affairs, sometimes even children with pots and pans are in attendance, but do be wary because (very, very rarely) things can turn badly. More likely than not, your travel plans will be effected by transportation strikes. Don't sweat it, enjoy the experience, and see it as an occasion to learn about French culture.

Tour a chateau

All over France there are staggeringly beautiful homes and castles open to the public. While the Chateaux in the Loire Valley take the cake and reveal some really interesting stories about French history, almost every major town has at least a small one to the public. Venture into buildings where kings and queens once entertained, barons and maids had affairs, and people were kept prisoner during the Revolution. There are certain days (Journees de Patrimoine) where almost all publicly held buildings and museums are open to the public for free, including areas normally closed to the public like the French President's residence!
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Cheap hotels in S. France

by ambj1994

Hi,
My friend and are will be in S. France from Aug. 31-Sep 11. We're thinking of visiting Nice, Marseille, Avignon, St. Remy de Provence, St. Tropez and Nimes. Can anyone recommend cheap hotels in these areas? Do you think it's best to take the train or rent a car? Is it necessary to get an intl driving license?
Thank you in advance.

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FAQ

yupgigirl
Best Travel Guide to Paris? (or even France, in general)?

I went to Paris last year and used the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide but was wondering if there's a more detailed one available, it's great for a short trip but I'm looking for one where I could plan a couple months for. Any good suggestions for travel guides??

I used one called "Daytrips France", (by Earl Steinbicker), and found it to be very useful. Two places that I recommend going to, (if you haven't been there already), are: Chantilly, and Giverny. Chantilly is a chateau and Giverny is the Monet garden. Have fun!

glass_garlic
Know of any travel guides about backpacking in france?

See, My family and I want to go to france, but we're on a very tight budget. I know I've seen books for people like me, books with information on hostels and cheaper alternatives, etc. If you know of any that you've had good experiences with or your friend has or whatever that would be fantastic! Thank you!!

Greetings - Patrick from footprintsdownunder here - I would sugest getting a lonely planet guide. Also come over to footprints and ask about it in our rave section link below this is a great way to get current travelers to give you advice.

footprints encourage new travelers to ask as many questions as possible, it is one thing to have your own adventure but if you can save money, avoid pit holes and find better places to stay it can only be a good thing.

Maryna
Traveling to France...?

So I'm planning on taking a trip to Paris, France in August with my 15 year old daughter and I was wondering if it would be best to sign up for a tour group or could we manage with just a guide book?

This will be the first time I have traveled there and i do not plan on renting a car. So any advice etc. for planning this trip?
Thank you!

Hm, I don't think you should go with a tour guide. Enjoy Paris for what it is, don't be distracted by tour guides babbling on about things you're not going to listen too.

Ideas- Spend one day and go to the Louvre in the afternoon, and the Eiffel tower at night.
The next day spend the day shopping around Paris.
The next day go to Notre Dame (beware of the gypsies!)
Etc. A guide book would be good, just to get more ideas

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