Book Bus Tickets in France
Here are some interesting facts that will help you while planning your France travel itinerary -
- Capital City: Paris
- Population: 67 million
- Official Language: French
- Other languages: English, Spanish, German
- Currency: Euros
- Area: 632,734 km2
History and Culture of France
The human presence on the territory of present-day France dates back to around 1,800,000 years ago. At that time, the land faced various climate changes marked by several ice ages. At the end of the last ice age, the climate became less harsh and from around 7000 its inhabitants became sedentary with the gradual appearance of the cultivation of cereals, livestock, metallurgy and new artisanal techniques: pottery, weaving, polishing. The first villages appeared as well as the first megalithic tombs: tumuli, cairns, dolmens, and menhirs.
Weather and Geography
France, a Western European state, is bordered on the north-west by the North Sea and the English Channel, to the west by the Atlantic Ocean, to the south by the Mediterranean and the northeastern border by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany. The country's climate is moderate when you consider average temperatures, a middle ground between polar cold and tropical heat.
Precipitation is moderate and generally well distributed throughout the year. However, these characteristics do not prevent certain extreme situations, such as cold spells or periods of drought.
Popular Cities To Visit in France
When you plan your France travel itinerary, you can add the following places to your trip -
It's hard to resist the charms of Marseille. Ancient and modern, peaceful and lively, cultural and sporting, this cosmopolitan city is a must-visit.
The wine capital of the world offers a gourmet trip worthy of the name. Renowned for the quality of its wines and its route through the great châteaux of the Médoc, Bordeaux offers a rich cultural tour.
In the heart of the Rhône valley, the City of Light will enchant you as soon as you cross its walls. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lyon is a vibrant and attractive city that majestically combines history, gastronomy and sporting activities.
A trip to Toulouse is synonymous with food, rugby and culture. Sausages, cassoulet, duck confit the city of Midi-Pyrénées opens the doors to French cuisine.
Cradled by the sun and the sea, the capital of Languedoc-Roussillon attracts people with its sweetness of life. Even though it is young and dynamic, Montpellier also has a rich past and 17th and 18th-century architecture.
Nestled between the Alps and the Mediterranean, Nice is a true haven of serenity. This famous bay of the Côte d'Azur is famous for its worldly charm and festive atmosphere in all seasons.
Your France travel is incomplete without a trip to Paris. The Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, and the Arc de Triomphe are well-known tourist attractions. But beyond its tourist sites, the capital has more to offer.
Transportation in France
If you are travelling alone or with a partner, it is best to book your seat online on a bus operated by one of the companies such as Ouibus, BlaBlaCar bus, Flixbus, etc. You can find buses on various popular routes covering both big and small cities like Paris, Bordeaux, Marseille, Nice, Caen, Metz, Lille and many more. The buses in France are usually equipped with wifi and charging points for comfortable travel. For budget-friendly trips, a bus is indeed a great option for travelling in France.
The rail network in France is ultra-developed. Thanks to the TGV, the train is most of the time the fastest and a convenient means of transport.
As mentioned before, travelling by train while visiting France is quite practical. But in some cases, it is better to fly. Indeed, some journeys are much better optimized by air. For example, a Paris-Nice flight trip only takes 1 hour and 25 minutes while for an equivalent price, the train will take almost 6h.
Accommodation in France
France has different types of accommodations, ranging from pocket-friendly motels and apartments to 5-star hotels and residences. Based on your destination city, the prices can vary drastically. For example, if you live in the Paris city centre, then it will cost you more than living on the outskirts of the city.
Also, living in the south of France in cities like Nice, Marseille, and Cannes can be very expensive during the tourist season between June to August.
During the Christmas month, living in cities that have world-famous Christmas markets like Strasbourg, Metz, Paris, Bordeaux, etc., can be again on the higher end.
Food in France
When you plan your France travel itinerary, do not forget to include tasting of the local French cuisine. Some of the popular delicacies are -
- Steak Tartare
Steak tartare is one of the French specialties, and is very popular among meat lovers. This dish is extremely easy to cook and super delicious.
Crêpes are a Breton speciality. You can find many kinds of salty (buckwheat pancake) and sweetened crepes with dessert.
- Pot Au Feu
Made with vegetables and some meat, it is a traditional French food item.
- Coq Au Vin
Coq au vin is a traditional French dish, cooked in red wine and accompanied by onions, carrots, a bouquet of Garni and mushrooms.
Composed of potatoes, bacon, reblochon and onion. It is usually accompanied by a good green salad. The tartiflette is a French culinary speciality that originated in Savoy.
Shopping in France
Classic, chic or vintage: shopping is every tourist’s to-do thing while on a France tour. The country is known for its designer clothes, world-famous fashion brands like Louis Vuitton, Coco Chanel, Dior and Hermes to name a few.
Not only the top brands but there are also countless local markets and over a thousand souvenir shops where you can find affordable clothes, jewellery, shoes, souvenirs, accessories and more. Just remember to say ‘bonjour’ and ‘au Revoir as an entry and exit gesture to the shopkeepers.
France Visa and Passport Requirements
The French visa requirements differ based on country. Entering France depends on the duration of your stay and also the type of visa. For example, to get a student visa for over a year, you need to apply at the local French Embassy in your city/country.
For short stays of less than 3 months, a tourist visa would do. Some countries do not need to apply for a visa to travel to France for tourism/short periods.
Business travel to France requires documents from your company among other necessary documents.
Travel to France from the US or other countries in America may have different requirements. You can check what kind of visa you need for your upcoming France trip on the official website.