France is beautiful, it’s one of those countries that’s just so much more than its beautiful cities. Of course you’ve got the stunning architecture and gorgeous sights to see in Paris… but there really is a whole country of incredible sights and beautiful places that are well worth a gander at during your trip to France.

As with any trip to any country, it can take many forms… it can stretch a few short and sweet days, to a few weeks or even a longer depending on how much time you want to savour this beautiful country. Regardless of the time, one thing is for certain, you’ll want to make sure you visit some key sights and stunning places that just ooze French charm during your visit!

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (1)

Take a look at 12 of our very favourite places to include on your next visit (or road trip) around France…

1) Lille

A Weekend In The Quaint French City Of Lille... Part 1 of 2 (13)

Lille is a historic 17th-century city that you don’t want to miss, especially as it’s so easy to get to via Eurostar from London (90 swift minutes from Kings Cross)…think Glorious squares, stunning architecture and romantic churches abound.

Don’t forget to pop into Méert for an indulgent afternoon of chocolate, sweets and all things cake, you’ll be spoilt rotten!

See our posts on how to visit Lille, right here: part one and part two

2) Montgenèvre

Skiing In The French Alps... (5)

The French Alps almost need no introduction, but if you are driving down to the south-east of France then Montgenevre is not to be missed. The beautiful mountains, incredible ski slopes and stunning scenery are just out-of-this-world!

 See our vlog from our time visiting Montgenèvre, right here

3) Mont St Michel

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (9)

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Mont St Michel is a church, abbey, and village set atop an area of rocky ground that makes it look like it is erupting from the sea. a beautiful sight that has become world renowned! Make sure to head over around dusk to spot the glowing orange hues across the sea.

4) Bordeaux

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (7)

Arguably the wine capital of the world! Bordeaux is not to be missed and is full of rambling vineyards where you can take a tour and enjoy a glass of one of their delicious blends. It’s the perfect place to notch up some wine tasting skills (or just pretend you know what you’re doing). Make sure to grab a few bottles and find out more about the best years to buy.

5) Avignon

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Avignon in Provence is known for the song about its famous bridge, but there it much more to explore here. Not to be missed are the mansions and churches that date from the 17th century. Spend a day, or so, rambling through its winding streets and cobbled walkways – it really is picturesque.

6) The Luberon

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (5)

The Luberon region in Provence is known for its picturesque villages that have become known all across France. Set among rolling countryside that is full of vineyards, this is rural France at its most beautiful and well worth a visit in the warmer months.

7) Fontainebleau Forest

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (8)

Fontainebleau Forest, just outside of Paris, is one of the most picturesque woodlands in all of France. Come here for bird watching, hiking, and climbing opportunities that is just a stone’s throw from the city itself… it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of Parisian life.

8) Strasbourg

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (2)

Located in Alsace on the border with Germany, Strasbourg has a completely different feel to many other parts of France. Not to be missed here is a chance to enjoy the food which is a mix of French and German fare. Just take your expandable trousers… you will pile on a few pounds from the delicious cheese and fresh bread!

9) The Verdon Gorge

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (4)

Nestled close to the Alps-de-haute-Provence, the Verdon Gorge has to be seen to be believed, it’s truly incredible! At the bottom lies the Verdon River which runs for over 100 kilometres.

10) Versailles

12 Stunning Places You Must Visit On A Road Trip In France (3)

When visitors thinks of Versailles they often imagine the famous palace, but Versailles is actually the name of the town that surrounds that palace as well. If you are setting out on a road trip from Paris then this is definitely a great first (or last) stop on your tour. Try and avoid some of the larger crowds by arriving early in the morning.

11) The Auvergne

France Volcano Visit

Located in the centre of France, the Auvergne is often overlooked in favour of the, more popular, south. The region is studded with spectacular volcanic landscapes and still has a strong tradition of agriculture and farming that’s gorgeous in the summer months. Hire a car and discover the quaint charm of the region.

12.) Dordogne Valley

The Beautiful French Village Of Martel... In Dordogne Valley, France (33)

Nestled close to Bordeaux, the Dordogne Region is one place that just screams rustic French beauty! This stunning region is filled with some of France’s most beautiful places, like Sarlat (think crooked rooftops and cobbled streets) and stunning vineyards that produce some of France’s most delicious wines. Don’t forget to also go truffle hunting in the Dordogne too!

See more on how to visit picturesque Dordogne, in our posts here

Image via 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

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  • Oui In France

    Excellent list, and as always, stunning photos!

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Thanks so much… we’ve only been away from France for a week and already longing to return! Haha! 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • Aftab – Fresh And Fearless

    This is brilliant! You have really done it justice. Bordeaux is definitely on my list to visit, especially for sipping wines at sunset. The Verdon Gorge looks so nice!! You would never think that exists in France.

    – A

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Thanks so much, Aftab 🙂

      We’re already itching to get back to France… already making sure we visit much more in 2017!

      Lloyd & Yaya 🙂

  • Great list of stunning places! I really hope I will have the chance to travel to france in 2017!!

    Stefanie ♥
    Style To Stay

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Thanks so much, Stefanie.

      It really is an incredible country to visit. Let us know if you plan a trip… always happy to help with advice and tips.

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • Emily

    oh wow, your photos are stunning! Great list too- I read about The Verdon Gorge the other day and it quickly made its way to the top of my list!

    Emily ||

    • HandLuggageOnly

      The Verdon Gorge is spectacular isn’t it. You can canoe within the gorge itself… definitely something for the summer months!

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • The Ginger Passports

    Wow, the photos on here (and all of your blog posts!) are absolutely amazing. I can’ t get enough of them! I’m so glad you posted Mont St Michel as I’ve seen pictures of it but didn’t know what it’s name was. I’d also never heard of the Verdon Gorge before, but definitely want to travel there now! Where do you find such splendid places to go?

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Thanks 🙂 We managed to visit France quite a few times this year… and managed to do lots of research. the Gorge is incredible isn’t it. We’re itching to explore more of Northern France too.

      Let us know if you need any tips, always happy to help 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

      • HandLuggageOnly

        … Apologies for not responding in French (we need to brush up on our skills) 🙂

  • Marion Martres

    Super ! La vallée de la Dordogne où il y fait bon vivre ! Elle est belle notre région ! En photo mais aussi en vrai ! Vous souhaitez séjourner dans la région ? N’hésitez pas à nous contacter ! 😉

    • HandLuggageOnly

      You’re so right, it’s such an incredible region of France. We LOVE it!

      Lloyd & Yaya 🙂

      • HandLuggageOnly

        … Apologies for not responding in French (we need to brush up on our skills).

  • beautiful France!:)

    • HandLuggageOnly

      It’s a gorgeous country isn’t it! 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • Laura Cunitz

    When looking for a location for a 3 week creative stop last year I picked Strasbourg. It is really my favorite town in Europe. Fabulous mix of French and German, food, history and architecture. The massive Gothic cathedral just celebrated its 1000th year! The Strasbourg Museum tells the incredible story of the entire area being passed back and forth from France to Germany time and time again. They also have the best clothes shopping anywhere!
    Thanks for the top 12, I’ve added many to my list.

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Strasbourg is incredible isn’t it! Such a beautiful town. You’re so right about the mix of influences, it really is a special place!

      So glad you like our post, Laura. 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • Taste of France

    I’d include Carcassonne! The fortified city is amazing, and the surrounding region is studded with charming villages and beautiful scenery, from undulating vineyards to forested mountains.

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Carcassonne is gorgeous isn’t it! We’re really hoping to visit in 2017. It looks like such a beautiful place. 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

      • Bill Lobban

        If you get to Carcassonne, try and visit Gouffre Geant de Cabrespine and the hilltop ruins at Lastours. Most people think of Canal du Midi when they are at Carcassonne and don’t get around to these two and others more.

        • HandLuggageOnly

          Thanks so much, Bill. We’re going to have a look at them for sure. Hoping to visit this summer! 🙂

  • This is so beautiful. Bookmarking this. I am planning a trip to France this coming year, and this will come handy.

    • HandLuggageOnly

      Ah, you’ll love it! Let us know if you need any advice or tips – always happy to help as much as we can 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

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  • Danielle Theriault

    Love France! I’ve only been to a few of these places, so I will have to check the rest out. Thanks for sharing! |

    • HandLuggageOnly

      It’s a beautiful country, isn’t it. Thanks so much, Danielle 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • These are all so stunning! I really need to get to France!

    • HandLuggageOnly

      You’ll love it, Rachel! Let us know if you’re deciding to visit… would love to send you some tips/places we know you’ll love.

      Lloyd & Yaya xx

  • zografia avgerou

    It’s a life’s dream to visit St. Michel and a place to see Aurora Borealis. I’d probably only be visiting Chalkidiki for the rest of my life, but dreams cost nothing! Thanks for sharing.

    • HandLuggageOnly

      St. Michel is so beautiful isn’t it… and you’re right, dreams cost nothing (love that ethos) 🙂

      Lloyd & Yaya 🙂