France is one of the few countries in the world that's gaining popularity in the luxury tourism industry. With charming villages and magnificent ancient chateaux in the countryside to rolling vineyards producing some of the world's most delectable wines, France will delight travellers seeking luxury experiences. Here are the top 5 luxurious destinations in France.
It's impossible not to think of Paris when going on a luxury trip to France. The sophisticated city is known for its prestige, with affluent boutique houses, department stores, and five-star hotels exuding luxury. Whether you've been to Paris several times or visiting for the first time to teach English in France, the city never fails to delight anyone, especially those seeking luxury experiences.
As a luxury shopping destination, many visitors would head to Paris to shop. It has some of the world's biggest fashion houses, from Alexander McQueen to the country's own Coco Chanel. If you're here for antiques and unique art pieces, check out the narrow alleyways of Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen. Here, you'll find thousands of shops selling all kinds of fascinating objects, including world-famous works of art.
After a day of shopping, the best way to relax is on a dinner cruise in the Seine River. Admire the city's iconic sights from your boat as it glides along the river and indulge in the delectable meals served with the finest French wine. But if you prefer to dine at a restaurant, head to Epicure, an upscale restaurant specialising in French fine dining and wine.
Cognac is a lovely town in Southwest France famous for its luxurious spirits. While it may not be as popular as the other French towns, there are plenty of things to enjoy here, from impressive architecture to remarkably delicious restaurants. One of the most luxurious things to do in Cognac is to book a hosted dining experience with Chef Dominique Crenn, which takes place at Domaine des Étangs, a lovely château converted into a 5-star hotel.
Stroll through the city's narrow streets and soak up the charm and relaxing atmosphere of the old town. The architecture here will transport you to the early days when it was thriving in the salt trade industry. These houses were built around the 16th and 17th centuries, featuring eclectic architectural styles. Follow the "Belle epoque" trail that takes you to Jardin de l'hotel de Ville, starting at Place Francois I.
Your visit to Cognac won't be complete without touring the Cognac distillery, the city's main attraction. Cognac is home to some of the biggest names in the liquor industry, such as Hennessy and Martell, which are some of the world's leading exporters of Cognac. These distilleries offer tours both in English and French. But it's worth noting that some of these distilleries are not open in the winter season, so better check the schedule if you come here in winter.
Saint-Tropez is a lovely fishing port that has become a favourite destination among jet setters. It's full of glitz and glamour and was made famous by French actress Brigitte Bardot in 1958 after she came across La Madrague, a lovely seaside house in Saint-Tropez. Since then, the port town has become a favourite haunt of French celebrities looking to enjoy the sea, sun, and sand.
Saint-Tropez is now a favourite destination for travellers seeking luxury experiences in France. The waters of Saint-Tropez are always full of yachts, where film stars treat themselves to flowing champagne. You won't be disappointed if you're here for French cuisine because Saint-Tropez has the best restaurants. The best place to enjoy lunch is at the lovely La Bouillabaisse Beach, where you'll find many beachside restaurants and cafes that opens to the stunning ocean views and serve delectable French food.
France is famous for its wine, and Saint Tropez is a great place to indulge in a glass or two of the country's most exquisite wines. Head to Chateau Minuty Vineyard, which lies along a picturesque hillside overlooking the Gulf of Saint-Tropez. Go on a vineyard tour and enjoy wine tasting while learning more about French wines.
The Loire Valley Region
Famous for its gorgeous chateaux, scenic rivers, rolling green fields, and bountiful vineyards, the Loire Valley charms history buffs, food enthusiasts, and wine lovers alike. If you're seeking to experience some of the finer things in France, a self-drive tour around the Loire Valley is an ideal way to explore the region.
Spanning 280 kilometres, the Loire Valley lies on the banks of the Loire River. Thanks to its fertile farmlands, the valley is also called the "Garden of France", producing the freshest ingredients that fill up the kitchens and cellars of some of the country's best restaurants. Wine connoisseurs will enjoy tasting the region's delectable variety of wines, from Cabernet Franc to Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir.
Historically, the Loire Valley was a favourite destination of French nobilities, so it's not surprising why this region is oozing with sophistication and luxury. Here, you'll find some of France's most remarkable castles and chateaux with spectacular gardens and equally impressive interiors.
Nice, the gateway to Cote d'Azur, is another fantastic destination in France to experience luxury. It's an ideal base for exploring the French Riviera and is home to luxurious hotels surrounded by panoramic views of the Mediterranean.
When holidaying in Nice, drop by the Opéra de Nice, one of the finest examples of 19th Century French architecture. Don't miss the chance to witness top-notch performances of opera, ballets, and symphonies. Enjoy a stroll at the Promenade des Anglais, soak up the sweeping ocean views, and admire the most stunning examples of Gothic architecture.
Home to numerous Michelin-starred restaurants, Nice is a fantastic destination to indulge in luxury dining experiences. One of the city's best restaurants is Chantecler, situated along Promenade des Anglais and housed at the Hotel Negresco. The interior features 18th-century decor, while the menu consists of French gourmet entrees paired with the finest French wine. Be sure to make a reservation since the restaurant is often full.