Paris is everyone's dream city and its eclectic mix of gourmet food, architecture and fashion style is fascinating. Outside Paris, its Renaissance castle keep your fairytale dreams high, and Nice is an invitation to high-end luxury, while its beaches and villages are offering an alternative to high-speed life. Not forget about the purple fields of Provence, such an unique colourful adventure during the summer days. France has so many faces to offer that you may need at least a lifetime to discover them all.
Population: 67.12 million
Time zone: GMT + 1
Currency: Euro (€)
Climate: The climate of France is mostly temperate, but it is divided into distinct climatic zones into different areas. October to April are the mildest, but damp months.
Foie Gras is a dish that most of us commonly associate with France and this is quite fairly as this delicacy is loved by the French. It is a duck-based dish usually served with brioche bread.
La cote de boeuf, or rib steak is also a common dish in France. Made of high-quality beef, this dish is usually made to serve one, but some restaurants offer huge steaks that can be shared by two. Beef Burgundy is perhaps the most favorite dish of the French and consists of beef that is braised in Burgundy wine. Salads in France can cost you about €18, while dinner for two with wine can cost you about €50-60.
Citron presse: This is a French version of lemonade and is a great drink to have in a café on a hot day. It is usually served in a tall glass with lots of ice, and it’s so tart that could make your lips pucker!
Café au Lait: This drink is a must-have for all coffee lovers. The creamy, frothy coffee paired with a flaky croissant from a local bakery is a great tea-time meal.
Kir Royal: This alcoholic beverage consists of champagne or white wine with a splash of crème de cassis, which gives the drink a pink blush, and is normally an aperitif -drink.
Pastis: This drink is most common in the South of France. It has strong anise or licorice flavor and is diluted using cool spring water to create a milky, refreshing elixir. Pastis is often incorrectly associated with absinthe, but only the taste, not the effect, is similar.
Like other European countries, France also has distinct seasons in terms of tourist influx. The most crowded period is July to August, and even though this is the best time to come as the weather is nice and sunny, but be prepared for a sweltering heat, especially in the South!
Eiffel Tower: Whenever anyone mentions France, this is probably the first thing that comes to mind. This tower is the most highly rated tourist attraction in France, being 276 metres high, can be seen from a distance of 70 kilometers on a clear day!
Louvre: Again, when you think of France, the Mona Lisa might also be a thing to pop up into your mind, and the best way to see her is to visit the museum that shows her! In addition to the Mona Lisa, the Louvre also houses 30,000 pieces of artwork from a number of renowned artists.
Palace of Versailles: This palace is a sight to behold. Whether you visit the Hall of Mirrors or the make-believe Marie-Antoinette's hamlet, you won't be bored while you explore this palace!
There is a typical stereotype in our minds, that French people wear berets. So in order to please your friends, take back home a few caps, and let them wear them and believe themselves to be French! Macarons are confections made up of almond flour that are now common all over the world, but taking back home some macarons from their country of origin, France, can turn them into a really special gift for friends and family.
Also, French wine is famous throughout the world, so take home a few bottles and gift them to your wine-connoisseur friend.
Things to Know While Travelling In France
French is a the most commonly-spoken language in France, and you won’t find a lot of people who speak English, so it is best for you to install a translating app, or to keep a small book of basic French phrases with you so you can easily communicate with the locals. Also, in order to get a true taste of France, and to save a lot of money, try to shop at local outdoor markets, rather than indoor shops.