Can anyone help me making a travel-plan for Southern France? Or just point out locations where to go / check out?
Or places you've been to and really enjoyed?
The idea is to see/travel through areas that are..
> full of beautiful nature
> smaller villages / cities
> mountains (perhaps even to hike around)
It would roughly 3 weeks, at most 4.
French southerner reporting in.
I'll assume you have a car or will use our efficent, when not on strike railway, so i'll pick locations from all over the south.
-High mountains: The Pyrenees are pretty amazing but I know the Alps better. The nationals parks of the Écrins and of the Vanoise (pic related) are beautiful. The Aiguille du Midi is pretty cool, with its James Bond villain like base at the top.
-Lower mountains: The pre-Alps, a.k.a the Vercors mostly is rocky cliffs and tortured landscapes with waves of rock cutting the land. Pretty cool to hike and without the need of high altitude preparation. Otherwise there's the Massif Central, made of a lot of plateaux, sleeping volcanoes, and global comfyness.
-Sea shore: The Atlantic coast is famous for its surf spot, and in Arcachon you can also find the highest sand dune in Europe and the Landes forest, largest "man made" forest in western Europe (look at a satellite map of France, it's this green triangle in the south west). The Mediterranean coast is warmer waters but very touristic, I honestly it isn't worth spending time on the beach of the Med if you are used to the sea, there are far better, more unique things to see in those regions. Unless you go as far as Corsica, the beaches are stunning.
-Canyons: We have a truck load of them actually. Canyon of Verdon, Tarn, Ardèche, Hérault, Bourne...My favorite being the first 3 I wrote. I'll dump pics of those places when I'm done. Definitely worth going there tho
-Caves: A lot of them too, especially in south western France (Dordogne, Lot). Caves of Padirac, of Proumeyssac.
-Also in Provence, the Calanques national park is beautiful, pics will follow.
Otherwise there are other landscapes like the wetlands and marshes in Camargue, foggy hills in the Corbières, plains in the Causses plateaux...so if you have something precise in mind, ask.
Cont. with the vilages/cities
I'll do the same with villages/cities but later, that was already bloody long.
Otherwise where are you from OP and is it the first time you come ?
Yes, I will be renting a car to travel through the areas if possible.
Also thank you VERY much for the list of locations you've given. I will do the homework on these places.
We're from Estonia.
And no, I've been lurking in here for years, have backpacked in Europe too for ~4 months. So I got some experience.
Southern France seems magnificent!
First some ressources: There's an organisation in France called "les plus beaux villages de France" (literaly "the most beautiful villages of France" that make a list of the most remarquable villages in France according to different criterias (population under 2000, historically preserved place, rural settings etc)
So here's the website (in english) of the organization and you can browse freely by geographic area http://www.france-beautiful-villages.org/en
Otherwise my personnal recommandations, in random order:
-The Aquitaine region (south west) especially the Périgord area is full of little typical villages. Rocamadour, Beynac, La Roque-Gageac, Limeuil, Sarlat, Castelnaud-la-Chapelle...There you will be able to enjoy local food (duck being a specialty), the rural countryside, and there are more than 15000 castles in this department. Definitely a place to go, and it includes most of the caves I mentionned too.
I'll dump pics of the villages I mentionned and of other, the name of the place is always in the filename so you'll be able to search yourself easily.
Grab your seat and blaze a phat 1 it's about to get comfy
>more than 15000 castles
Typo, I meant 1500
15 000 is probably country-wide tho
Also I notice I didn't talk about lakes, but I won't unless Op wants to know more, this is already long
I'm about done with the villages, there must be a hundred in my folder from all over the country but I'll refrain myself. Cities then but first a break, it takes practice not shitposting
That's it with the villages OP. There's also this list tho but I believe you have enough. https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Villages_et_cit%C3%A9s_de_caract%C3%A8re
It's kinda like the organisation I talked about. The page is in French but that'll give you a list of name anyway
Now my autism compels me to post a few landscapes I forgot, "sorry" OP
Lozère, the least populated French department, even less densely populated than the French Alps.
Alright it's better now.
Other questions, which season are going to be here and how do you speak French ? Just basics is necessary tb.h, we'll treat you far better if you at least know how to "good bye/hello/thanks/please" in French, and ask for basic stuff. (especially that a lot of things even in touristic areas aren't translated). I remember a British guy struggling a good 10mn with a parking meter to pay because it was all in French
Thanks a ton for these images!
We'll be there during summer, not entirely sure yet at which month exactly. Most likely between July/August.
And yes, my partner is nearly fluent in French, so language hopefully won't be a problem. I'm not so sure if there are any dialects or accents that would be hard to understand though.
>I'm not so sure if there are any dialects or accents that would be hard to understand though
No, the regional languages aren't used in daily life (unless it's two people knowing it, otherwise it's always French) and the accent can be pretty thick sometimes in the south but once we see you aren't from here we'll adapt