Short breaks in France

Your guide to weekend and city breaks

Latest articles in Short Breaks


Christmas Markets in France

Traditionally, housewives in France would spend the weeks leading up to Christmas preparing a festive feast and Christmas markets developed to supply them with the ingredients and products they needed.

48 hours in Champagne

More than just bubbly… Just two and a half hours’ drive from Calais, and under an hour out of Paris by TGV train, the Champagne region is ideal for a weekend getaway. How would you spend your perfect 48 hours there?

Les Saisies

10 Reasons to Visit Les Saisies

1: Exceptional snow Les Saisies’ close proximity to Mont Blanc not only provides superb views but also above average snow coverage. Over the years, it’s enjoyed higher accumulated snowfall than all of the surrounding mountain ranges, hence the nickname of ‘Grenier

Top five reasons to visit Avignon

Three hours south of Paris, Avignon holds great treasures that are part of an incredible Christian heritage. Famous worldwide for the children’s song Sur le pont d’Avignon, written about its bridge, the city is also home to many lesser-known marvels.

Nantes, France’s quirky capital

Situated between the Loire Valley and Brittany, Nantes is a city where the impossible can become possible. Where else could you come across a giant elephant walking through the streets? It’s also a must-visit place for learning about Brittany’s court

Giverny. Lillypads. Willows

Giverny. The 11th attempt is a charm…

My last contribution had me whinging and whining and wallowing in self-pity over my failed attempts to visit Claude Monet’s home and gardens in Giverny. Ten failed attempts to be exact. We recently returned from France. Three weeks spent between

Old Lyon from across the Saône river

Silk and sopranos: a cultural trip to Lyon

The second largest city in France and its gastronomic capital, Lyon is also famed for its weaving heritage and its opera house. Florence Derrick examines its cultural exports and how they relate to contemporary Lyonnais life

6 great day trips from Paris

There are a wealth of discoveries to be made on the City of Light’s doorstep so if you’re visiting the capital, consider taking one of our recommended outings…

Ardennes: Vive la différence!

During an exploration of the French Ardennes region that borders Belgium, Dominic Bliss discovers the myths and stereotypes that have shaped the two countries’ relationship.

Top five things to do in Brive

With its rich culinary culture, picturesque gardens and robust castle, Brive boasts everything a characterful city should. We outline our top five things to see and do in Brive.

Seine-et-Marne: by Royal appointment

Just outside of Paris is a forest-filled department blessed with the good stuff – fairytale royal châteaux, passionate local food producers, great markets and no end of artistic heritage. Justin Postlethwaite tours Seine-et-Marne.

Jean-Marc Charles

How to enjoy a French city break: new for 2015

1. Fondation Vuitton, Paris The glittering contemporary art space designed by Frank Gehry has alighted in the Bois de Boulogne. The structure of billowing glass “sails” houses displays of the permanent collection, composed of pieces from the Fondation Louis Vuitton

Great hotels of France: Bristol fashion

It’s among the elite of the French capital’s hotels. But what makes a legendary hotel like Le Bristol tick? Justin Postlethwaite meets some of the team who have added their own personal histories to the hotel’s.

48 hours in Amiens

One hour from Paris by train, the city of Amiens in Picardy has plenty going for it. Discover the tallest cathedral in France and the home of writer Jules Verne – now open to the public, plus floating gardens and delicious local delicacies.

Colours of Cézanne in Aix-en-Provence

Few places in France are as synonymous with an artist who lived and painted there as Aix-en-Provence. Guy Hibbert explores the stunning southern city through the eyes of Impressionist Paul Cézanne.