French Hiking Adventures

France is renowned for its glittering, culturally rich cities, but its countryside is equally breathtaking. Mountains, beaches, caverns, and forests are all waiting to be explored. This summer, why not avoid the tourist crowd and strike out on a new path? Here are some beautiful hiking trails for anyone who loves a little nature with their culture. The Grande traversée des Alpes françaises This massive trail connects Belgium to the shores of the Mediterranean with a series of 20 km […]

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Explore Outdoor Paris Markets

Foodies rejoice! Summer means the many thriving outdoor markets Paris has to offer are brimming with farm-fresh foods. Covered markets operate all year, whereas open air markets are seasonal and only on certain days, so you have to do a little research in order to catch one. Whatever your taste, there’s sure to be something to please your palate. Of course, shopping and wandering through the busy market crowd is half the fun. Here are some of Paris’s best markets […]

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Fantastic Free Paris Activities

A summer trip to Paris is a dream come true for many people, but a vacation there can certainly add up to a big expense. Have no fear—some of the best things in Paris, as in life, are free, so take advantage of these fantastic free activities to do in Paris while you visit the City of Lights. Notre Dame Cathedral This famous Gothic cathedral is surrounded by lush greenery and gardens, all of which is completely free to visit. […]

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Exploring France’s Beaches

With beach season fast approaching, France’s many coastal getaways are becoming more and more appealing to travelers looking for uniquely beautiful shorelines. Visitors to the region love the sparkling waters and beautiful Mediterranean sunsets along the Côte d’Azur and beyond. Honeymooners, families, and anyone looking for a place to escape to will all find the perfect destination among France’s many beaches. Here are a few of the most beloved beaches in the south of France. Palombaggia Beach Located in lovely […]

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Fairytale French Chateaux

Paris offers all the attractions of a modern metropolis, but it can also be an enchanting experience for a traveler weary of the city’s hustle and bustle to explore the majestic French countryside. A drive or railway trip through the country will allow you to experience all that France has to offer, and historic castles are some of the most popular attractions outside the capital. With dozens of these medieval structures still standing, a vacation in France can also be […]

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April in Paris

Springtime is upon us, which means that there’s no better time of year to enjoy the City of Lights. Strolling tree-lined boulevards is an ideal occupation for locals and travelers alike, and enjoying the romantic atmosphere of the city’s many green spaces is one Parisian activity that is absolutely free. Although the Tuileries and Luxembourg gardens might get all the attention, you can experience Paris in bloom in dozens of smaller gardens off the beaten path. Why fight crowds when […]

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Aquitaine: A Brief History

Church is Sarlat, Perigord, in the Aquitaine region of France.

Our direct ancestor, the Cro-Magnon man -named after a site in the Perigord- testifies to human habitation of what is now Aquitaine going back thousands of years. The caves of Lascaux, in France, contain some of the earliest known representational art, dating to between 17,000 and 15,000 years before the present. Vercingetorix surrenders to Julius Cesar. The Romans conquered “Aquitania” after a bitter fight against the Celts led by Vercingetorix, a local hero. The ensuing Pax Romana allowed the creation, […]

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Cathars

Catharism was a Gnostic heretical movement that originated around the middle of the 12th century AD. It existed throughout much of Western Europe, but its home was in Languedoc, in southern France. The name Cathars probably originated from catharos, the pure ones, maybe also from cattus cat which they were supposed to sexually abuse during their ceremonies, and one of the first recorded uses is Eckbert von Schˆnau who wrote on heretics from Cologne in 1181: Hos nostra germania catharos […]

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Regions of France

Regions oFrance has 26 rÈgions, which are further subdivided into dÈpartements. Alsace 67 Bas-Rhin 68 Haut-Rhin Aquitaine 24 Dordogne 33 Gironde 40 Landes 47 Lot-et-Garonne 64 PyrÈnÈes-Atlantiques Auvergne 03 Allier 15 Cantal 43 Haute-Loire 63 Puy-de-DÙme Basse-Normandie 14 Calvados 50 Manche 61 Orne Bourgogne (Burgundy) 21 CÙte-d’Or 58 NiËvre 71 SaÙne-et-Loire 89 Yonne Bretagne (Brittany) 22 CÙtes-d’Armor 29 FinistËre 35 Ille-et-Vilaine 56 Morbihan Centre (Val de Loire) 18 Cher 28 Eure-et-Loir 36 Indre 37 Indre-et-Loire 41 Loir-et-Cher 45 Loiret Champagne-Ardenne […]

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