D-Day Landings At Omaha Beach – What The History Books Didn’t Tell You

U.S. Allies Land at Omaha Beach on D-Day

For those of us who were born post-1945, it’s hard to imagine what all those heroic tales of WWII must have really been like. Books, movies, and documentaries go some way to explaining the reality of war but there’s nevertheless a tendency to think of such things in terms of the overall picture, and not in terms of individual experiences. It’s only when we read personal accounts, written by the people who were there, that we can begin to truly […]

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Saving the Jews in Paris

Grande Mosquée de Paris

During WWII, the Great Mosque of Paris was used as a refuge for Algerian and European Jews, hiding from Nazi persecution. As well as shelter, Islamic cleric, and founder of the Great Mosque, Si Kaddour Benghabrit, provided Jews with fake muslim birth certificates to keep them safe from the Nazis.

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A New Boutique Hotel Opens In Paris’ Opera Quarter

hotel indigo paris

In time for the 10th anniversary of its Hotel Indigo brand, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has just opened its first boutique hotel in France, in the heart of Paris’ 9th arrondissement. The new 4-star, 57-room hotel, with 12 suites and duplex apartments, some of which overlook the Eiffel Tower, is the 60th the group has opened in the past decade, and is a modern take on classic Parisian style and elegance. Facilities include a gym, the Tartares restaurant, which comfortably […]

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Fancy A Night-time Walk In Marseille?

google night walk in marseille

Just because you may not be in France right now, it does not mean that you cannot walk through the streets of last year’s European capital of culture, Marseille. How can this be? With Google Night Walk, of course. Alors! Google Night Walk, which utilizes the technology behind Google Maps and Google Earth, features a veritable feast of music, maps, narrative, and local stories, which guide you through this immersive experience, allowing you to ‘walk’ around France’s second-largest city at […]

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Real Men Knit… On Stilts!

bas landes shepherds

The Tchankats were French shepherds whose flocks would wander through the foggy marshes of Landes. They needed a way to prevent trench foot, avoid venomous snakes, and be able to keep an eye on their charges. They invented stilts. And as if that isn’t cool enough, they would actually knit while on their stilts too. And have races. L – The last of the Tchankats, Sylvain Dornon, knitting on his stilts. R – A stilt race at Arcachon-going to the […]

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Six Free Things To Do In Paris

Jardin Saint Vincent

Contrary to what some people may think, a visit to the City of Light need not break the bank, so to prove it, we’ve put together half a dozen great free things to do in Paris for the budget-conscious visitor. Take a walk among the tropical plants in the Jardin d’Agronomie Tropicale In the northern part of the Bois de Vincennes, in the suburb of Nogent-sur-Marne, is a public park with a difference: in 1907, it was home to l’Éxposition […]

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Not all that is French is in France… or Europe!

Manchot Sanguinaire - map of French Overseas départements, regions, collectivités, and territories

Did you know that nearly 20% of the territory of France lies outside Europe? These regions are known as “DOM-TOM” (overseas departments and territories), and over 2.5 million French citizens live there… unsurprising when you consider that France used to control in excess of 8% of all the land in the world!

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Les Muscadétours Returns This Weekend

les muscadétours 2014

This weekend, in the heart of the Loire Valley, the vineyards of Nantes play host to Les Muscadétours, now in its third year, which returns for another three days of viticulture fun, heritage, and gastronomy. Whether you are a newcomer to French food and wine, a keen enthusiast, or a seasoned connoisseur, there is something for everyone. In addition to all the merrymaking, there’s a more serious aspect to the wine festival, which will be held across the winemaking communities […]

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France’s Wonderful Waterways

Péniches sur la Seine à Paris by Pline

Before the advent of railway, rivers were the main transportation routes in France. France is home to 24 rivers which exceed 300 km in length, whereas Italy and Britain only have four and two, respectively. So important were these waterways, that out of the 95 metropolitan départements (administrative divisions), 66 are named after rivers. Rivers which flow into the sea (or into a desert or lake) are called fleuves, and when they flow into other rivers, rivières.

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Four Secret Paris Eateries

chez louisette by Benoît Deniaud

Stuck for somewhere great to eat while in the City of Light? We have the answer to your tummy rumbles! Café A – Facebook page 148 rue du Faubourg Saint-Martin, 75010 This charming little café, in the 10th arrondissement, serves delicious fresh organic food, such as cold cuts and bruschetta. To find it, walk through the gates of the former 17th century convent, and keep going under the arcade until you come to the architectural museum’s very pretty courtyard, with […]

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