France is an extremely popular destination for holiday makers. This year the country has attracted 84 million tourists; some as their final destination and others on route to other countries. Last week the Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius announced plans to increase visitor numbers to 100 million in 2015. He is putting together initiatives that will improve the warm welcome tourists receive in France and also provide more options that offer better value for money.
In addition to the millions of foreign tourists, the majority of French people also stay in their own country for their holidays. Warm weather and sandy beaches draw city dwellers to the coastal resorts, particularly during the national holiday in August.
Whilst the many attractions of France may be appealing, the thought of all those tourists may be off putting to some holiday makers. The fact is that there are still plenty of places to head which have much to offer, but are off the main tourist routes.
The first piece of advice if you are looking for peace and relaxation is to avoid Paris. Paris is the most popular city, with 30million annual visitors and an additional 15million heading for the Disneyland Paris resort on the city’s outskirts. Millions of people have dreams of climbing the Eifel Tower and visiting the Louvre, Moulin Rouge and Arc de Triomphe. As a major city, Paris is always crowded and you should expect to pay higher prices for goods and services in the city.
If you are looking for history, culture, café culture and modern attractions without the crowds, cities such as La Rochelle and Bordeaux on the West Coast of France have plenty of appeal.
If you really want to escape the hustle and bustle, it is reassuring to know that 80% of France is still rural countryside. From the rugged coastline of Brittany to the rolling hills of Provence, the mountains in the Alps, to the riverside vineyards of the Loire Valley, there remain many places to get away to unspoilt places.
Our Vendee campsites see a significant number of visitors returning time and time again. Vendee is a rural and coastal region which benefits from a warm climate. Its sandy beaches, open countryside and woodlands provide the ideal destination for those who love to enjoy the great outdoors and prefer not to battle with the crowds.
From our Vendee campsites, it is possible to take a day trip to La Rochelle or appreciate the traditional markets, shops and attractions in more local towns. Alternatively you can hire a bicycle and head off in search of deserted beaches, fishing harbours and forest walks which remain quiet even in the height of the holiday season.
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