France Tour Packages:- Think of a trip to Europe, and France is one of the few countries that comes to mind first; rightly so, as not only is it known the world over for its beautiful architecture, delicious gastronomic delights and a history steeped in intrigue and drama, but also, for the welcoming people, beautiful countryside and varied landscapes. France was, and still is, known as a country full of romance, glamour, and a zest for life.The historical monuments like the Arc de Triomphe or Trophy of Augustus, or the various art galleries and museums. Be it the pristine beaches of Normandy and Brittany or the Monte Cinto and Mont-Blanc, France has something worth visiting for people of different age groups and with different interests.
France travel restrictions for Indians traveling to France
France is now open to tourists. Read more about travel restrictions and France travel guidelines
in the link.
About France Holidays
Good, bad or ugly, everyone has an opinion about France Holidays and the French: chic, smart, sexy, or rude, racist, and bureaucratic. It is, after all, Europe’s fabled land of good food and wine, of royal chateaux and restored farmhouses, of iconic landmarks known the world over and hidden landscapes few know. Savour art and sweet romance in the shining capital on the River Seine. See glorious pasts blaze forth at Versailles. Drink till dawn in a banana-ripening warehouse on the Atlantic. Listen to jazz and blues in Paris. Travel south for Roman civilisation and the sparkling blue Med. Ski the Alps. Sense the subtle infusion of language, music and mythology in Brittany by Celtic invaders. Smell ignominy on the beaches of Normandy and battlefields of the Somme. And know that this is the tip of that iceberg the French call culture. Yes, this is a timeless land whose people exude a natural joie de vivre and savoir-faire. Yes, this is the country that entices more travellers into its lovely lair than any other.
Most Popular France Tour Packages:
Must-visit places in France
Grace Kelly’s Monaco, a flutter in Monte Carlo Casino, a portside aperitif in St-Tropez, a strut in Cannes, and There’s no better place to kick off a whistle-stop classic French tour sight than Paris, where the Eiffel Tower
, Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame
, and Louvre warrant a postcard home. Stroll the banks of the Seine and the gardens of Versailles, then flee the capital for Renaissance royalty at Châteaux de Chambord and Chenonceau. Or skip the Loire and spend a couple of days in Normandy marveling at Rouen’s Cathédrale Notre Dame, the Bayeux Tapestry, Mont St-Michel, and the D-Day landing beaches. Venture south through the Bordeaux wine region. Surfers can ride waves in Biarritz, and the faithful or faithfully curious will like the world-famous Lourdes. Otherwise, it’s straight to Carcassonne and its city walls; Roman Nîmes, with a trip to the Pont du Gard; and the papal city of Avignon with its nursery-rhyme bridge. Finish on the Côte d’Azur, not missing a stroll in Nice.
Best time to visit
The best time to visit France
is in spring, from April to June or in autumn, from September to November, and usually, the climate in France need not be considered when planning to visit. Speaking of the climate, the Northern part of France, namely, Pas de Calais, Picardie, parts of Normandy and the Alsace-Champagne region, are the ones which are wet most of the year and also the ones with the most unpredictable weather. On the other hand, Paris has a mild, continental climate wherein the winters are chilly but not too cold, and the summers do tend to get hot, although only occasionally. Rain is frequent and occurs all year round. As one moves south of the Loire valley, the weather tends to get warmer, and some of the west coast areas like Pays de Loire, Aquitaine, Limousin, Poutou, Charentes experience thunder and storms even in summer. The eastern part of the country has more continental weather, where the winters are colder and the summers hotter. The southwestern part of the country, namely the Provence-Alpes, Cote d’Azur and the Corsican Islands, have a much more reliable weather pattern. It would also be wise to note that, since most of the French population goes on Holiday within the country during July and August, this is not a very good time to visit the country unless overcrowded tourist spots and traffic jams are your thing.
How to reach France from India
Although all major cities in France, Bordeaux
, Nantes, Lyon
, Toulouse, Nice, Lille and Clermont-Ferrand, have their airports, these airports usually cater to flights coming in from the Western part of Europe
and sometimes the African continent. There are very few airlines that fly to these airports directly from India. Therefore, the best option for people visiting France from India would be to take a flight directly into Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport or Orly airport. Almost all major airlines like Air India, Emirates, Qatar Airways, Etihad, British Airways, Air France, KLM offer flights to Paris with a single stop-over from all metropolitan airports in India. However, Delhi is the only airport that runs non-stop flights to Paris. The economy ticket prices for these routes can set you back anywhere from Rs. 55000 to Rs. 350000 per person for a round-trip. The time taken to fly from Delhi to Paris is usually 10 hours on a non-stop flight, but this can also go up to a maximum of 40 hours depending on the city you are flying out of and the number of stops that the flight takes.
If you want to make your France trip even more memorable, there’s no better way of doing it than taking a cruise to this dream destination. Many cruise
companies sail out from Mumbai to almost all major destinations in Europe. Following are some cruise companies that can help you customize an excellent tour package to France via sea: Royal Caribbean Cruises Genting Cruises P&O Cruises Cordelia Cruises Princess Cruises Carnival Cruises Norwegian Cruise Lines
Main destinations in France
Let us take a look at the main destinations in France and the different places of tourist interest at these places.
The capital city of France has a lot to offer to tourists. The not to be missed places in Paris are:
Other things to do in Paris
- The Eiffel Tower: Tickets to the Eiffel tower cost anywhere between Euros 4.30 to Euros 26.80 depending on your age. The monument opens at 9:30 am and is open till 10:45 pm. Do not miss the views that the top floor has to offer. Although the best time to visit would be in the evening, after dark, when the monument itself lights up and offers a fantastic view of the city lights below, it does tend to get crowded in the evening hours. More info here: https://www.toureiffel.paris/en
- The Louvre: The Louvre is an exciting place to visit that showcases different art forms and artefacts from different periods of European history. Although most people visit the monument to sneak a peek at the Mona Lisa, the rest of the museum is enormous and offers a lot. Discover different works of art or follow one of the visitor trails in the museum or just relax in the museum’s gardens.
- The museum is open from 10.30 am to 5.30 pm on weekdays and from 9:00 am to 5.30 pm on weekends. Tickets cost Euros 17 per person. More info here: https://www.louvre.fr/en
- Visit the Palace of the Versailles - Euros 49 pp
- One-hour guided cruise on the Seine - Euros 10 pp
- Two-hour Paris city tour by bus - Euros 20 pp
- Illuminated Paris tour (evening) and Moulin Rouge - Euros 109 pp
- A day trip to Mont Saint Michel by bus - Euros 115 pp
- Two-hour evening cruise on the Seine - Euros 22 pp
- A stroll along Champs-Elysees and the various perfumeries and fashion houses there
Provence borders Italy and the Mediterranean sea and is known for its varied landscapes. The olive groves, the southern Alps, the different vineyards, and the lavender fields all give this region its identity. The best places that you must visit if you are travelling here are:
- The Verdon Gorge - The Verdon river and the Musee de la Faience
- Serre Chevalier - A large ski resort with 250km of pistes
- Promenade des Anglais - Nice’s iconic seaside promenade
- Palais des Papes - A 14th-century Papal palace with frescoes
- Mont Ventoux - A mountain with an iconic bike trail
- Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild - A seaside villa with landscaped gardens
- Lerins Islands - An abbey and a monastery
- Marc Chagall National Museum - Biblically inspired paintings and gardens
- Mercantour National Park - A national park in the Alps
- Boulevard de la Croisette - A seaside boulevard and the site of a film festival
- Pont d’Avignon - Historical remains of a World War II bridge
- Sainte Croix lake - Famous for beaches and boating
- Ile Sainte-Marguerite - A small island with an old fort and breath-taking views
Bordeaux is a region in the southwest of France, famous for its vast vineyards, Gothic 18th and 19th-century architecture and beautiful quays lined with gardens. Some of the must-see places here are:
- Place de la Bourse - A landmark square with a reflecting pool
- Bordeaux Cathedral - An 11th century Catholic Cathedral
- La Ciudad del Vino - Wine related exhibitions
- Monument aux Girondins - A historic fountain
- Musee du Vin - A wine museum focusing on Bordeaux wines
- Grosse Cloche - An old jail with a large 18th-century bell
- Calle Santa Catalina - A shopping street within the old city
- Pey Berland Tower - A gothic bell-tower offering panoramic views
- Saint-Emilion - A chateau that provides a tour of their vineyards and wine tasting
- Dune of Pilat - A huge dune on the coast
It is a quaint seaside region known for its Vieux-Port neighbourhoods, street markets and Bouillabaisse stew. A few places to visit here are:
- Mucem: Museum of European Civilizations - A modern museum showcasing local history
- Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde - A landmark basilica with fantastic city views
- Chateau d’If - A former prison island fortress
- Massif des Calanques - A national park with geological formations
- Cathedrale La Major - Lavishly decorated cathedral from the 19th century
- Frioul Archipelago - Beautiful island with a castle
- Fort Saint-Jean - A waterfront military structure
- Marseille History Museum - A museum tracing the city’s history
- L’Estaque - Lively beaches with seafood restaurants
- Les Petits Trains de Marseille - Mini train rides around the city
is an adventure lover’s delight with cable cars, glaciers and year-round adventure sports. Located in the Mont-Blanc region, it has a lot to offer to tourists, namely:
- Mont-Blanc - Climb Mont-Blanc along with one of its climbing routes
- Aiguille du Midi - Take a cable car ride to the peak of Mont-Blanc
- Train du Montenvers Mer de Glace - A vintage rail ride with views of the glacier
- Mer de Glace - Huge glacier with walking trails and an ice cave
- Aiguille des Grands Montets - Skiing facilities on a rugged mountain glacier
- Musee des Cristaux - A mineral museum with rotating exhibits
- Chamonix Mont-Blanc Helicopteres - A helicopter ride to the top of Mont-Blanc
- Lac Blanc - Bluewater lake with mountain views
A city with pink-walled houses in the southern part of France, closer to the Spanish border. The following are the top sights of the region:
- Basilique Saint-Sernin de Toulouse - An 11th century Romanesque church
- Les Abattoirs - A contemporary art venue
- Cité de L’Espace - An interactive planetarium
- Musee Saint-Raymond - An antiquities museum
- Canal du Midi - Canal that offers boating and bicycle tours
- Capitole de Toulouse - Place du Capitole and regional bistros
- Halle de la Machine - Demonstrations of giant machines
- Musee Aeroscopia - Modern aeronautical museum
- Casino Theatre Barriere de Toulouse - A gambling complex with a plethora of bars
- Victor Hugo Market - A covered market for food materials
Best hill stations/beaches
The best hill stations in France are
- Cusset - Situated in the Auvergne region in Central France
- Hulluch - Located in the Northern part of the country closer to the Calais region
- Lillebonne - A small commune located in the Normandy region in Northern France
- Morlaix - Located in the North-west region of France closer to the Guernsey coast
- Rhone-Alpes - A mountainous region in southeast France bordering Switzerland and Italy
The best beaches in France are
- En Vau - Located on the east coast closer to the Swiss border
- Porquerolles - A quaint island off the southern coast of France
- Gatseau - The second largest island located off the west coast
- Palombaggia - Scenic white sand beach with evergreen trees
- Ile Vierge - Located on the north-western coast, home to the tallest stone lighthouse in Europe
Best honeymoon destinations
The following are the best honeymoon
destinations in France:
- Paris - A honeymoon in France is incomplete if this destination is not on your list. It is the most popular honeymoon destination in France. Everything about the city is magical, the people, the fashion, the architecture, the food culture and the romantic aura that the city exudes.
- Sancerre - A place known for its fine wines, where people say that the wine and the vineyard age gracefully. A beautiful town on a hill, located in the southeast region of France, which provides enchanting views of the Loire river. Head here to enjoy a quiet, tranquil honeymoon away from the hustle of city life.
- Dordogne - Dordogne is located between the Pyrenees mountain and the Loire valley on the other. The location of this remarkable place tucked away in the countryside is sure to be the highlight of your romantic getaway. You can also explore the mediaeval-era caves in the quaint old town.
- Calvi - A beach lover's paradise, the small town of Calvi is located on the north-western coast of the Corsican islands. You can explore the crescent-shaped bay or roam the cobbled streets of Calvi as you go about taking in the sights and sound there.
- Carcassonne - A holiday in Carcassonne is sure to give you a feeling that you have stepped onto the set of a Disney movie. Dreamy, enchanting and mysterious, the town of Carcassonne is a perfect choice for honeymoon couples who are also connoisseurs of all things historic.
Places to visit in France
A trip to France is incomplete without visiting these wonderful places:
- The Provencal countryside
- Côte d’Azur
- Mont Saint-Michel
- The Loire Valley
From the museums and nightlife of Paris to the beaches of the French Riviera, from the mountains of the Rhone-Alpes to the rolling vineyards of Bordeaux and the Loire valley, each of these places has something unique to offer to people of different age groups and with different interests.
What to eat
If you are visiting Paris, then these are the must-visit places to satiate the gastronome in you. Don’t forget to try the
- Croissants from La Maison d’Isabelle and/or The Boulangerie
- Escargots (snails flavoured with herbs) from L’Escargot Montorgueil
- Macarons from Pierre Herme and/or Symphonie
- Jambon Beurre (ham sandwich) from La Fontaine de Belleville
- Steak Tartare (raw beef steak) from Le Severo
- French Cheese (almost 300 different varieties) at A la ville de Rodez
- French Onion Soup (contains beef) from Bistrot des Vosges
Other dishes to try includes
- Ratatouille at La Rossettisserie in Nice
- Biscuit Rose de Reims at Fossier in Reims
- Coq au Vin at Le Bouchon du Palais in Dijon
- Madeleines at A la Cloche Lorraine in Commercy
- Bouillabaisse at Chez Paul in Marseille
- Andouillette at Marche Alimentaire Saint-Antoine in Lyon
- Salade Niçoise at Chez Palmyre in Nice
Things to do in France
Tourists are often so engrossed in sightseeing that they miss out on many moments and experiences which are a part of the local culture in any country. Many such experiences and moments happen not when you just visit a place but when you capture the soul of a place. Here are a few such experiences that one must have when visiting France:
- Watch the sunset from the top of the Eiffel Tower.
- Experience a river cruise
- Explore the old Parisian quarters.
- Discover the different artists’ villages in Provence.
- Witness the Serenade at the Versailles Palace.
- Try your hand at cooking French cuisine in Burgundy.
- Take a bicycle stroll around Bordeaux.
- Experience the cuisine at Les Charmilles on a candlelit evening.
What to shop for in France
Shopping in France is also an experience in itself. Whether you visit the designer stores in the city or the local thrift stores in the countryside, this will be a completely different experience for two different people. Following are some of the best places to shop for souvenirs in France:
- Paris - Paris is a perfect place for shopping for clothes in France. You may want to check out the fancy, high-fashion designer labels or the amazing collections of accessories and vintage clothing in one of the thrift stores there. The best places to shop in Paris are Bon Marché, Boulevard Saint-Germain, Rue Tronchet, Rue du Bac, and Boulevard Haussmann. Also, do not miss the shopping district in Montmartre where you can buy souvenirs like paintings made by the local artists, clothes, handicrafts or even get a caricature done of yourself from one of the street artists.
- Lyon - Since Lyon is one of the larger cities in France, there are options aplenty for everyone when it comes to shopping. There is something for every budget here. The best souvenirs in Lyon can be sourced from Lyon Part-Dieu, Place Bellecour, Pôles de Commerces et de Loisirs de Confluence, and Rue de la République
- Cannes - This feather in the cap of the French Riviera also happens to be a famous shopping destination. You can shop for clothes and other beautiful souvenirs while you take a stroll along with one of the many seafronts here. Here are a few places in Cannes where you can shop to your heart’s content and take in breath-taking views at the same time: Rue Meynadier, Boulevard de la Croisette, and Rue d’Antibes
- Bordeaux - Being the wine capital of France and one of the most happening cities in the country, there is never a dull moment here when it comes to shopping. Bordeaux also claims to have the country’s longest pedestrian-friendly shopping street. Some places to prospect for unique souvenirs in the town are Au shopping Bordeaux Lac, Quai des Marques, L’Intendant Grands Vins de Bordeaux, Meriadeck, and Rue Saint-Catherine
- Montpellier - Although not known for its shopping options, it can surprise you when it comes to sourcing souvenirs to take back home. The best places to find memorabilia to take home are Marche du Lez, Centre Commercial Le Polygone, and Place de la Comedie.
- Lille - Lille is home to many shops, many of which are old, Flemish style structures. Lille is famous for its Christmas Market when patrons from all across northern France visit Lille to experience the Christmas festivities and shop for goodies at the same time. The best places for shopping in Lille are Centre Commercial Les Tanneurs and, Euralille.
Where to stay in France
Almost all cities and towns in France offer accommodations suitable to every budget. There is something for everyone, from 5-star hotels to Bed and Breakfasts, from Youth Hostels to timeshares, and from homestays to vacation rentals. Generally speaking, prices for a room in a budget hotel in Paris start from Euros 100 per night, whereas they generally top-off at Euros 70 per night in the rest of the country. A mid-range hotel can set you off by Euros 170 per night in Paris and Euros 150 per night in the rest of France. A deluxe category hotel can make you poorer by Euros 450 per night in Paris and Euros 300 per night in the rest of the country. Most of the hotels in France display room rates at the hotel entrances or in the reception area. However, it is always advisable to book your stays online, where you’re guaranteed to find great deals on rooms.
Indian restaurants in France
Although France is a gastronomer's heaven and a food connoisseurs’ sanctuary, it will be a waste if one goes to France and doesn't try the local cuisine. There are chances that one can feel homesick and crave good ol’ desi fare. Fret not; there are a lot of restaurants that serve scrumptious desi fare straight out of the kitchen. These are a few must-try restaurants if you are in the mood for some home-cooked meals:
- Saravanaa Bhavan for Vegetarian, South-Indian fare at 170 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis
- MG Road for North-Indian vegetarian and non-vegetarian fare at 205 Rue Saint-Martin
- Muniyandi Vilas for South-Indian vegetarian and non-vegetarian food at 207 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis
- Indian and western traditional flavours at 90 Quai de Jemmapes 10e
- Gandhiji’s for Indian non-vegetarian classics at 12 Rue Lafayette 9e
Adventurous Things to do in France
Adventure is an exciting thing and it comes with its fair share of Adrenaline. There are many adrenaline junkies out there who just can’t seem to get the Indiana Jones out of them. So when in France, why not ride the high French style. Following are some activities that adventure enthusiasts can think about (or not!) undertaking when in the land of the romantics:
- Rollerblading in downtown Paris with Paris Roller.
- Horseback riding in the Provencal region
- Skydiving in Cannes
- Skiing down the French Alps
- Surfboarding and wave crashing in Brittany
- Canoeing in the Loire Valley
- Rock climbing at Millevaches National Park
Interesting facts about France
- France is the largest country in the European Union.
- It is sometimes also called the Hexagon.
- It is the world’s most popular tourist destination.
- The shortest monarchy to ever reign over France was Louis XIX. He was king for just 19 minutes.
- French was the official language of the UK for over 250 years.
- The French army was the first army in the world to use camouflage clothing.
- Things like tin cans, hot air balloons and hair dryers were invented in France.
- It is legal to marry a dead person in France.
- It is illegal to throw away food in France.
- France legalized gay marriage in 2013.
- France has the highest number of Nobel Laureates in Literature. The tallest mountain in Europe is Mont-Blanc.
- The Louvre in Paris is the museum with the highest number of visitors.
Celtic, Roman, and Germanic cultures shaped French culture throughout history. France became a patchwork of local communities and cultures as these influences evolved. What applies to one community may not apply to another. Despite the rise of global culture, France has worked to retain the customs of its smaller communities.
- French is the official language of France, and it is spoken by 88 per cent of the people. Even yet, most of the population speaks French as a second language. Minority languages, on the other hand, thrive in specialised areas. Eastern provinces, for example, speak German, whereas the northeast speaks Flemish and the southeast speaks Italian. Other ethnic groups in France speak a variety of languages.
- For millennia, the family has been the foundation of French society. Traditionally, extended families or nuclear families would make up the family structure. In recent years, that structure has altered to predominantly resemble nuclear families, with variations such as single-parent households or PACS.
- Most French people consider themselves to be Christians (primarily Catholic). Catholicism has had a key influence in defining French culture throughout history, and it was the state religion until 1789. According to French tradition, kings were crowned in the Notre-Dame de Reims church until 1825. Today, the majority of the populace identifies as agnostic or atheist. However, in modern France, there are large Muslim, Jewish, and Buddhist populations.
If you're planning a trip to France, knowing about these French customs can help you prepare:
- For informal woman-to-man, woman-to-woman, or man-to-woman encounters, kissing on the left cheek and then the right cheek is a frequent welcome.
- For man-to-man conversations in formal contexts, handshakes are a typical greeting.
- Begin with saying "Bonjour Madame/Monsieur" to gain someone's attention.
Behavior in Public
- At grocery stores, customers bag their groceries.
- Ask someone if they speak English before speaking to them in English. If you speak English.
- Being formal and restrained, especially with strangers or acquaintances, is courteous.
- In public, quiet tones are expected.
- In France, "dressing down" is not a common practice.
- Drinks are served at room temperature instead of cold or with ice.
- It is usual to give little gifts such as chocolates, flowers, or candy when invited into a French home.
- Most dinners include appetisers, so don't overeat before the main course arrives.
- Observe what the host does to determine when to begin eating or how to eat various meals.
- While eating, keep both hands at the table but keep your elbows off the table.
If you're ever unsure how to act in France, watch what the locals do. Imitating the mannerisms of residents in France will help you maintain politeness and respect for their culture and traditions.
French Visa for Indians
Before travelling to France, Indian nationals can apply for a Schengen Visa via the Thomas Cook website at https://www.thomascook.in/visa
. The Schengen Visa grants access to all the countries part of the European Union. The process of applying for a Schengen Visa on the Thomas Cook
website is fairly straightforward.
1. Fill in the details like the Name of the country for which visa is required, the number of adults and children travelling, date of travel, preferred branch for visa collection and document drop-off (if required), your mobile number, e-mail address, and click on ‘get quote’.
2. Once you click on ‘get quote’, you will be shown the approximate amount of charges you will incur for the visa processing and the visa itself.
3. The Thomas Cook advantage when applying for a visa
- Save time and effort by booking online
- Real-time visa updates and tracking
- Booking of appointment with the concerned embassy
- Increased chances of visa approval
Foreign Currency for travel to France
Before you travel to France, make sure you purchase enough Euros to last you the entire duration of the trip. Thomas Cook makes it easy for you to buy forex online by visiting https://www.thomascook.in/foreign-exchange/buy-forex-online.
It is suggested that you buy forex
in the form of a multi-currency card
that can be used all across France. Most of the establishments accept digital forms of payment, even the small mom-and-pop stores. However, the saying that “Cash is King” cannot be ignored completely. Hence, it is advisable to keep a certain amount of Euros in cash, mainly in small change, for emergency cases.
Other such places to visit
Spain - https://www.thomascook.in/holidays/international-tour-packages/spain-tour-packages
Switzerland - https://www.thomascook.in/holidays/international-tour-packages/switzerland-tour-packages
Germany - https://www.thomascook.in/holidays/international-tour-packages/germany-tour-packages
Poland - https://www.thomascook.in/holidays/international-tour-packages/poland-tour-packages
Italy - https://www.thomascook.in/holidays/international-tour-packages/italy-tour-packages