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Visiting Paris andthe French countryside

edited March 2011 in - France
We are 4 adults, 2 from South Africa and 2 from New Zealand, we would like to tour the French countryside by car and visit Paris for about 4 days where we would use public transport or walk. The best time for us is August, being school holiday time would these places be extremely busy or do families with children go to specific holiday destinations during the summer holidays? We are not planning on sea side holidays much rather the villages and smaller places.

We were thinking of a hired barge trip on one of the rivers. what is recommended for someone who has not seen France before?

Thank you


  • edited 10:09PM
    Paris is a lovely city and offers a range of attractions including museums, sightseeing, concerts, nightlife & many more . Apart from seeing its main attractions you can also take various side trips to Champagne Region; Versailles Palace and Gardens; Seine River; Loire Valley Castles including Chambord, Cheverny and Chenonceau; island of Mont Saint Michel off the coast of Normandy. If also interested to spend some time on the beach then you can plan for Normandy D-Day battlefields and beaches day trip. Car is the best option to travel and explore the French countryside and side trips. If you want to rent a car then I will suggest you CarsRentalFrance dot com company as personally I prefer this firm. It is a trusted company that offers cheap rates, discounts and deals along with quality cars. It is much cheaper than companies like Avis and Hertz. However try to avoid driving in the main city as it is too crowded. Car is best for countryside trips.
  • edited 10:09PM
    I am a South African living in the beautiful medieval town of France .. one of the best kept secrets here ! August is not a great month to visit here as it is peak season and everything is more expensive - as well as it being hot to travel. If you can come in September you will find prices much lower and also it is easier to move about in Paris. I would suggest that you consider staying outside of Paris if you come in August, and rather commute by train as this is such an efficient and amazing way to move around. You can buy a 5 day pass which will allow unlimited travel from anywhere in Ile de France (including Paris of course).
    Also, the Alp region (Eastern France) is very popular for French during the summer holidays (mid July to end August) so I would suggest you look to northern and central France to wander around in. France is extremely safe, has great roads, and the drivers are very good. Barging is possible but can be dear sometimes.
    I hope that you have an amazing time - and if you try to speak a little French then the French will usually really try to assist !
    A bientot
  • Hi Kristen,

    Brittney here, I just wanted to let you know that Paris is a lovely place to visit. I have been thinking of going there myself. I live in Niagara Falls, NY and have been researching a company called New York Habitat. They have said they've dealt with vacation rentals in the South of France and Paris, including London and NYC. I have been wondering if I'll go this route with the company. So I'd like to ask you; what companies are you going to work with, now that you and your friends are planning the trip to Paris? Thanks so much and I hope you find what you're looking for. And I've heard some of the places in Paris are spectacularly wonderful... You should check out the Notre Dame Cathedral, it's free and happens to be a historic religious site- this historic place built in 1345 and has been deemed as Paris' top main attractions. Another thing you might want to sink your heart into is the Eiffel Tower (designed and constructed in 1889), where you and your party of friends can enjoy the romantic site, and take delight on what this mystic site has to offer. In addition to this, the company I've mentioned at the start of this conversation has this astounding blog about Paris. It can be found here, Reading this article has made me fall in love with the idea of traveling to Paris all over again! I think whatever makes you happy, you should definitely look into. It could be a miraculous experience. Glad to assist anytime.
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