The Ultimate Guide to Holidays in France

Welcome to French Holiday Inspirations 2018!

Putting together a French holiday handbook, I expected to be swept under a tide of nostalgia as warm and fuzzy memories of childhood summers in France flooded back. Quite the opposite. The memories did surface. . . but the endless spins on merry-go-rounds (the ubiquitous manèges) in deepest Normandy, and occasional petit train pootles, truly paled in comparison with  the funfest of theme parks, action-packed jaunts and seaside adventures pinging daily in my inbox. Had I had the faintest whiff of the wealth of alternatives lying beyond the makeshift carousel I’d have ditched the teacups without a backward glance. Thankfully, you have French Holiday Inspirations to zhuzh up your brood’s summers (and spare them the manège), flag up the coolest new (and classic) attractions, unmissable festivals and secret nooks only the locals know about.

We’ve also thrown in grown-up larks, watersports galore, bucket-list sights, a volley of once-in-a-lifetime getaways, active breaks and our top beach resorts to really sweep you off your tippy-toes – and stir up post-hols nostalgia for decades to come. Fancy chasing the waves in Biarritz? Gorging on oysters in Morbihan? A splash in Evian’s soothing spring, perhaps? How about a romantic escape to the sun-dappled Isle of Beauty or quaffing spree around Bordeaux sans teens? Whatever floats your boat, it’s just a page flip away (with handy travel tips too for a worry-free dash across the Channel). Of course, a lifetime of holidays would not be nearly enough to squeeze it all in. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have great fun trying. Bonnes vacances!

Marion Sauvebois Editor, French Holiday Inspirations 2018