France is world-renowned for its haute cuisine (high-quality cooking). But you don't have to blow your budget in an expensive restaurant. Some of the tastiest French treats can be bought in
The most iconic item of French street food is the crepe: delicious, cheap and filling as a main or a dessert. Start your mornings with un pain au chocolat or un escargot from a bakery, try a baguette sandwich or a falafel for lunch, and end the evening with a refreshing gelato.
Sure, Paris is the capital of fashion, culture, and art. But where can you go for sunshine and a relaxed atmosphere?
Head south to the French Riviera. While Cannes and Monaco attract a star-studded crowd, Nice is a great place to experience the true flavors of the Cote d’Azur without breaking the bank. However, avoid the French Riviera in August, which is when many restaurants and shops in Paris shut for the season, and everyone goes south for the summer.
Don’t get me wrong, I adore Paris. But there is so much more to see in the world’s most-visited country.
Hop a ferry to Corsica for unspoiled beaches, rugged mountains and spirited residents. Be awed by legendary Versailles and explore the castles that dot the Loire Valley.
Enjoy the scenic countryside in Normandy, dotted with black-and-white cows — who we can thank for melt-in-your-mouth butter.
Go wine tasting in Bordeaux and sip some bubbly in the only authentic Champagne region, sample African-influenced dishes in Marseilles, and try cliff jumping in Cassis for a bit of an adrenaline rush (read your travel insurance policy carefully to know what activities are covered).
In France, restaurants aren’t trying to turn tables – good food is a much more serious business than that.
Settle in by ordering un carafe
Keep your bread on the table, not your plate: it’s simply another utensil used to push meat onto your fork or mop up delicious sauces. At the end of your dining experience — don’t feel rushed — ask for
One of the most common complaints from disappointed first-time travelers in France: the French are rude.
Let me break it to you now: they’re not just being rude to you because you’re English-speaking, or American, or loud. Pessimism is practically a national sport in France, but don't let it ruin your trip.
A few cross-cultural tips:
Dying to try French food in France? Understand these tell-tale signs you're about to be scammed, so you steer clear from the tourist traps.
Six things travelers wish they'd known before traveling around Europe's cultural capital, France.