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How to Visit France Outside the Beaten Path

You know we’re all about traveling differently. Not only when it comes to being responsible for your actions, but also trying to go to places not that many tourists visit. So this is what you’re about to read in this article: the best spots to visit France outside the beaten path, like nobody else, skipping the cities that everyone knows and focusing on a more picturesque and local scene! Let’s get to it!


Étretat

Not enough words can describe this impressive landscape full of cliffs in the Northern coast of the country. On top of its white cliffs, you can get to see at its greatest exposure. The lovely tiny houses that form this coastal village are something beautiful to see at night when they get illuminated. Even the infamous Claude Monet painted these views in some of his masterpieces (especially the sunsets, which are stunning to enjoy!)

 

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Saint-Guilhem-le-Desert

This will be the perfect destination for those travelers who want to spend some days out of the busy traveling routine. The narrow streets, green hills and rounded stone houses create the perfect environment for slow traveling a couple of days before getting into a bigger town. It’s located 45 km away from Montpellier. If you want some adventure, you have the Cascade de la Vis, a really nice cascade, and a stream to practise some kayaking!

 

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Franche-Comté

Located in Eastern France, this picture-perfect province is known for the beauty of its medieval constructions. You can easily tell this just by looking at the pictures of some of its cities, such as the region of Burgundy or Besaçon. Some of them are full of pretty little Dutch-like style houses and all of them have a traditional way of making cheese, which has been used since some centuries now. Its high quality and delicious flavour is due to the fact that the cattle from this region is only used to make all kinds of fantastic cheese.

 

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Le-Puy-en-Velay  

Le-Puy-en-Velay is known for being all covered by red rooftops that are pretty recognizable from above and for the unique Notre-Dame statue that looks over the town, right in the center. The hilly streets and the square you can have a warm tea in are great for spending some days relaxed in a local place that won’t be crowded and. Plus, you’ll be able to taste the most delicious lentils of the world in a hot dish of sausages.

 

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Mirepoix

The main characteristic of this town is the lovely houses, built around the main square and supported by pillars made of wood that creates a medieval environment that will make you fall in love! A surprising fact about Mirepoix is that the Cathedral was built in 1300. Yes, I know. You’ll also find lots of small shops where you can buy local specialties that you can’t obviously find anywhere else. Say yes to supporting smaller economies and living the local lifestyle every time you travel!

 

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Mont St. Michel

I’d recommend this village destination if you’re traveling with your soulmate! It is as romantic as it can get, with some marvelous walls and towers, it’s the perfect cozy place to have a two-day getaway and if you’re lucky enough, during the coldest months, you might spot some snow. It will take you around three hours of driving to get here from Paris, since it’s located near the Normandy Coast, completely surrounded by water, so yes, you’ll be basically staying in an island. So cool and chill, I can tell you!

 

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Colmar

This city is well-known for resembling to Venice, but in a more local and charming way. It’s located in the limit with Germany, which you can tell at first sight, due to the architecture style of the surroundings. It will totally remind you of a Grimm Brothers’ tale and the kindness of the people is absolutely fabulous. You’ll also enjoy the channel that and the small shops and restaurants all along it. Just sit down, order a warm coffee and be delighted by the concoction of French and German beauty!

 

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So this is it for my suggestions about local experiences in France, which I’m sure you’ll enjoy a 100% You don’t know how cool it is to spend some time away from the beaten path until you try it. It is, no doubt, the best way to engage with insiders, getting to know the way they live and communicate between each other. Even if they come from a similar culture than you, you always end up learning something wherever you travel to. The important thing, as I always say, is to be open-minded and immersive, trying to make the wisest decisions when it comes to picking in-destination activities, transportation or food!

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