France is such a beautiful and varied country. We are very lucky to live in the South West in the Dordogne where we are surrounded by countryside wherever we go. Although it is stunning, I do want to try and visit other places in France too.
With easy access from Germany, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, Italy and the UK, it’s easy to understand why lots of people decide to do a French road trip.
Just remember, that it gets very hot in Summer, last Summer we got to early 40s so it’s a wise idea to have a car with air conditioning whether you are coming in chic sports car like those from Sandown Mercedes or a sturdier more family friendly 4×4. With lockdown easing slightly, we are now allowed to travel up to 100km but I think we will be staying local for a while longer. I know tourism is really going to struggle this year so I’m hoping some of these ideas will make you think about where you can visit next year. There are so many places to visit in France with children.
I think this must be the most visited place in France, whether people go for the day on the train, have a long weekend, spending 3 days in Paris or stay for a longer break. The capital of France and home to Disneyland. There is so much to do and see here, and this is a perfect way to spend quality time with your family and children. Paris is split up into 20 arrondissements so take a look at where you are wanting to visit to decide where to stay so you can make the most of your trip.
Paris is a paradise for the vintage fashion-mad teens, and there are thousands and thousands of boutiques here.
Keep your camera ready as the Parisian architecture will never cease to amaze you around every corner.
Ascend the Eiffel Tower which is looked upon as a 130 year-old excellence of engineering.
Visit Musée du Louvre that boasts of thousands of works of art. You can explore the outdoor gallery of Tuileries Garden with hundreds of statues and sculptures. Explore the streets for street art filled with stencils, stickers, and collages. Enjoy French food while enjoying the panoramic view across the River Seine and the Eiffel Tower in the backdrop.
Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in the Alps and is popular for hiking, climbing, trail running, skiing and snowboarding. Situated between France and Italy, the best place to visit in France is in Charmonix.
Chamonix is the most popular ski slopes in France and is just about two hours from Lyon. Placed at the end of Alpine, it is known as the capital of all-mountain skiing as it caters to levels of skiers, right from beginner to experienced to professional. Instructors with lots of experience can be found everywhere.
Bordeaux is a port city in the South West on the Garonne River. It’s known for its Gothic Cathédrale Saint-André, 18th- to 19th-century mansions and notable art museums such as the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux. Public gardens line the curving river quays. The grand Place de la Bourse, centered on the Three Graces fountain, overlooks the Miroir d’Eau reflecting pool.
Lucas and I went last year to visit the Christmas markets and we had such a wonderful weekend. We walked to miles, exploring the streets and shops. We took a cruise on the river and Lucas has asked to go back so we can go on the bus tour. It is definitely my favourite city.
Alsace is a historical region in the North East on the Rhine River. Bordering Germany and Switzerland, it has alternated between German and French control over the centuries and reflects a mix of those cultures.
Its capital, Strasbourg, is centered on the Ill River’s Grand Île island and home to the Cathedral of Our Lady of Strasbourg which is undoubtedly an architectural highlight, and it is the second-tallest cathedral tower in the country. Try local delicacies at popular restaurants and brasseries.
Saint-Tropez, Côte d’Azur
Saint-Tropez is a coastal town on the French Riviera, in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region of southeastern France.
For decades, this region has been well known for rich and famous visitors and remains known for its beaches and nightlife.
The cobblestoned La Ponche quarter recalls its past as a fishing village, although yachts now outnumber fishing boats in the Old Port.
Children will love looking at the impressive yachts, playing on the beach and paddling in the sea. Take a boat tour of Port Grimaud, wander around the village and visit Grimaud castle ruins before finishing off with an ice cream.
Monaco, officially the Principality of Monaco, is a sovereign city-state, country, and microstate on the French Riviera. France borders the country on three sides while the other side borders the Mediterranean Sea.
Known for its upscale casinos, yacht-lined harbour and Grand Prix motor race, which runs through Monaco’s streets once a year. Monte-Carlo, its major district, is home to an elegant belle-époque casino complex and ornate Salle Garnier opera house. It also has many luxurious hotels, boutiques, nightclubs and restaurants.
Like Saint Tropez, children can enjoy looking at yachts, playing on the beach and paddling in the sea.
There is also Saint-Martin Gardens to explore. The gardens are made up of a series of paths on the south west face of the Rock of Monaco. Flora include Aleppo pine trees and yellow agaves in its terraces with medieval fortifications also featuring in the gardens.
Explore the Musée océanographique de Monaco that is also home to an aquarium with 6000 specimens. See how a prince lives in the Prince of Monaco’s 13th-century residence, with lavish state apartments open to public seasonally.
Whilst you are on your road trip, make sure the children are entertained. This book is perfect for a French road trip! The Little Museum: A children’s mystery adventure.
The Little Museum is the first in the Extraordinary Travellers series and is a page-turning travel adventure story for boys and girls aged 8-11. There is a magic map, a clever invention and an exciting race through France, with a little bit of French thrown in for good measure.
When Lucy and her younger brother, Tom, find out their mum is part of a group of Extraordinary Travellers they have no idea how much their life is going to change and what adventure awaits them.
Join them on their quest to discover why the Eiffel Tower has disappeared, what else the Little Museum is going to contain and why the President of France needs their mums’ help to sort it all out.