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10 Best Places to Visit in France

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Palace of Versailles in France

Versailles Gardens in France

The 10 best places to visit in France conjure images of elegant boulevards, iconic monuments, incredible art museums, and spectacular food and wine.

Whether you want idyllic villages or fairytale castles, urban energy, or countryside refreshment, the following information highlights some of the best destinations in France, where you can savor irresistible old-world heritage and contemporary life.

Let the glamour of Paris seduce you from the top of the Eiffel Tower or cross the lavender fields to the landscaped lawns of royal chateaus before retreating to the French Riviera during your France tour.

  1. 1. Paris
  2. 2. Normandy
  3. 3. Loire Valley
  4. 4. Burgundy
  5. 5. Bordeaux
  6. 6. Aix-en-Provence
  7. 7. French Riviera
  8. 8. Lyon
  9. 9. Avignon
  10. 10. Alsace
  11. How Many Days is Enough to See France?
  12. Explore the Best Places to Visit in France

1. Paris

Paris, France

Paris, France

Paris is an icon of France, with exceptional museums, classical bistros, stylish boutiques, and grand boulevards lined with monuments.

With enticing pastries, a dynamic combination of Belle-Epoque and contemporary architecture, the pleasant banks of the Seine River, and neighborhoods that feature open-air galleries, Paris retains its international allure, one that’s worthy of the endless love affair the world has with the majestic city.

Highlights: Louvre Museum • Eiffel Tower • d’Orsay Museum • Orangerie Museum • Arc de Triomphe • Versailles

Recommended Length of Stay: 2-3 days

2. Normandy

Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, France

Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, France

Normandy abounds with some of the country’s most significant monuments, located in a single region. You can explore the differences between impressive castles and picturesque towns, and find seaside resorts and scenery spreading from dramatic coastal cliffs to sweeping prairies.

Normandy is idyllic and historic, with bucolic villages brimming with old-world charm and beaches that played an essential part in World War II, the island hosting Mont Saint-Michel and a depiction of the Norman Conquest found in the Bayeux Tapestry Museum.

Highlights: Mont Saint-Michel • Notre-Dame de Rouen Cathedral • Bayeux Tapestry Museum • D-Day Beaches • Jumieges Abbey

Recommended Length of Stay: 2-3 days

3. Loire Valley

Château de Chambord in Loire Valley, France

Château de Chambord in Loire Valley, France

The Loire Valley embraces and emboldens French splendor with preserved architectural style and celebrated gastronomy.

The elegant palaces and landscape quickly immerse you in the former frontier between France’s north and south, established in sumptuous cuisine and artistic creativity, outstanding wines and sophisticated cities, each epitomizing historical luxury.

Whether looking for signs of the Hundred Years’ War or images of the Renaissance, lavish royals and legendary stories only add to the enticing allure of the Loire Valley.

Highlights: Château de Chambord • Place Plumereau • Notre-Dame de Chartres Cathedral • Bourges • Azay-le-Rideau • Orleans

Recommended Length of Stay: 2-3 days

4. Burgundy

Medeival village of Châteauneuf-en-Auxios in the Burgundy region of France

Châteauneuf-en-Auxios in the Burgundy region of France

Burgundy conceals its remarkable monuments and attractions in sleepy, unassuming countryside decorated with deep forests and lush hills. Medieval villages and quiet towns emerge from the shadows of larger heritage cities like Dijon, combining two of France’s greatest passions, food and wine.

You can enjoy tranquil canals and scenic hot-air balloon rides, cycling routes through vineyards, and hiking trails around the paradisiacal wilderness, which reveal the region’s unique diversity and give way to hints of Roman and Celtic antiquity.

Highlights: Dijon • Châteauneuf • Beaune • Vézelay • Fontenay Abbey • Auxerre

Recommended Length of Stay: 1-2 days

5. Bordeaux

Place de la Bourse in Bordeaux, France

Place de la Bourse in Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux is a center of urban elegance and provincial charm, wrapped into the grand landscapes of southwest France.

The city feels like an intoxicating blend of 18th-century architecture and modern life, as artistic treasures meet tree-shaded boulevards, exuding a charm that represents one of France’s most romantic places.

Palatial architecture rises out of the rich riverside, while sun-soaked vineyards, festivals, and breathtaking cuisine place you in scenes unlike any other city in France.

Highlights: Saint André Cathedral • Place de la Bourse • La Cité du Vin • Le Grand Théâtre • Fine Arts Museum

Recommended Length of Stay: 2-3 days

6. Aix-en-Provence

Cours Mirabeau in Aix-en-Provence

Cours Mirabeau in Aix-en-Provence

The rural pace of life meets the sunny lifestyle of Aix-en-Provence, making it one of the places in France to visit during your trip to enjoy tree-lined streets and charming squares, lively sidewalk cafes, and the joie de vivre for which France is famous.

The city embodies a classic sophistication associated with the South of France, stemming from noble traditions, but with a welcoming feeling of unpretentiousness. With a chic ambiance and polished old-world terraces, Aix-en-Provence has charmed the likes of Cezanne and Picasso, and continues to seduce visitors from around the world.

Highlights: Old Town • Cours Mirabeau • Quartier Mazarin • Saint Sauveur Cathedral • Granet Museum

Recommended Length of Stay: 2-3 days

7. French Riviera

Monaco in the French Riviera

Monaco in the French Riviera

While places in France can range from exotic to historic, the French Riviera is the personification of French elegance and Mediterranean paradise. The deep azure water laps the scenic strip of coastline, giving rise to the French name, Cote d’Azur,  and unveiling seaside glamour and endless energy.

You can bask on private beaches and in five-star hotels for a perfect couple’s tour of France, enjoy viewing the sails of passing boats, or view the elegant ambiance of grand boulevards.

Living history, artistic legacies, Mediterranean cuisine, and landscapes leading from olive groves to craggy cliffs enhance the immersive personalities of the French Riviera.

Highlights: Nice • Saint-Tropez • Monaco • Eze • Menton • Beaulieu-sur-Mer

Recommended Length of Stay: 3-4 days

8. Lyon

Bridge over the Saône river with Notre-Dame de Fourviere Basilica on the hill in Lyon, France

Lyon, France

Lyon is commanding and historic as it rises from the Rhone and Saone rivers. Visiting Lyon is like discovering an undiscovered French city, even though it is the second-largest in the country.

Its cultural treasures date back to the Roman era, with medieval streets and Renaissance houses. The Old Town immerses you in a fairytale ambiance and the historic quarters fill with the famous cuisine celebrated by gourmands across the globe.

Distinctively sophisticated and completely indulgent, Lyon is a city of specialty and perfection.

Highlights: Old Town • Notre-Dame de Fourviere Basilica • Fine Arts Museum • Gallo-Roman Civilization Museum of Archeology • La Croix-Rousse

Recommended Length of Stay: 1-2 days

9. Avignon

Pont Saint Bénézet bridge with Popes Palace in Avignon, France

Avignon, France

Avignon is a city of legacy and wonder. With soaring ecclesiastical architecture and squares shaded by trees, ramparts circling the historic center and popular festivals celebrating art and culture, Avignon easily blends the past with the present.

Whether you want to sit at a cafe and watch the world pass by or wander through the opulent halls of the 14th-century Papal palace, the city personifies the beating heart of art de vivre, the quintessential art of living.

Highlights: Palais des Papes • Petit Palais Museum • Saint Benezet Bridge • Saint-Didier Church • Calvet Museum

Recommended Length of Stay: 1-2 days

10. Alsace

Colmar, France

Colmar, France

Alsace is remarkably French, yet wholly individual. Villages glow with candy-colored houses taken directly from a fairytale, capturing the imagination of families with kids of all ages. The rolling countryside is filled with vineyards and centuries-old traditions preserve a more relaxed pace of life.

Alsace is unspoiled, bucolic, and a storybook personified, with its narrow cobbled lanes and potted flowers lining windowsills crowned by some of France’s most mouthwatering culinary traditions.

Highlights: Colmar • Strasbourg • Riquewihr • Obernai • Kaysersberg • Ribeauvillé

Recommended Length of Stay: 2-3 days

How Many Days is Enough to See France?

Gardens of Claude Monet in Giverny, Normandy, France

Monet's Garden at Giverny in the region of Normandy, France

Two weeks is ideal for the perfect France trip, though an experienced travel specialist can work within any schedule constraints, especially when traveling during the best time to visit France.

With two weeks, you can divide your time between Paris, Normandy, Bordeaux, and the Loire Valley, or between Paris, Provence, and the French Riviera.

With a 14-day France tour, you can slow down and enjoy the true French ambiance to celebrate the art de vivre like a local.

Explore the Best Places to Visit in France

Champagne vineyards surround Baroville village in the Cote des Bar region of France

Baroville in the Cote des Bar region of France

France is a must-see destination. Every region offers unique, enticing, and completely spellbinding things to do, like sipping wine in an antique vineyard or wandering the Louvre Museum galleries, finding a storybook village, or witnessing history woven into a tapestry.

Find the experiences you crave with our France travel guide for helpful information on how you can explore the scenery, culture, traditions, and cuisine, or look for inspiration in our France vacations and tours.

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