Spring in France is the stuff of storybooks and legends. Who hasn’t imagined riding on horseback through mythical green lands, past rushing rivers and magnificent, turret-crowned castles? For the more adventurous traveller, there’s plenty to do in spring: from light aircraft rides over breathtaking landscapes to white-river rafting and cycling tours through miles and miles of vineyards and rustic villages. And if you’re after culinary experiences, spring is a wonderful time for a food tour in France, too. No matter your interests and wishes, read on for ideas that will make your springtime getaway to France truly extraordinary (and full of luxury). If we succeed in inspiring your curiosity, don’t hesitate to get in touch: we’ll work with you hand in hand to create the perfect bespoke tour or holiday this spring.
France in the Springtime is mythical for its beauty, but also for its adventurous possibilities. We’ll make sure your trip is nothing short of extraordinary.
Relatively warm weather returns to France in April or May, generally, and after a long, cold winter, there’s nothing like getting out into the great outdoors for fresh air, exercise, gorgeous views or thrilling physical feats. Whether your travelling solo, exploring France as a couple or building team trust and cooperation through a corporate getaway, there are numerous wonderful activities in store for nature and sports lovers.
Why not soar in a microlight aircraft over the Loire Valley or the ultra-green, prehistoric landscapes of the Dordogne? Bird’s-eye perspectives are guaranteed. Or take a hike through the sublime Pyrenées mountains, staying in ultra-luxurious lodgings between your walks, where you can enjoy fine gastronomy, gorgeous views and perhaps a few spa sessions to relax your tired muscles after a long day?
If water sports are what you’re after, kayaking or white-water rafting on France’s beautiful, pristine rivers might be just your speed. Or why not take private sailing lessons on the Mediterranean, enjoying the thrill of learning to navigate the open water in between taking advantage of luxurious amenities on the Cote d’Azur? Finally, gently floating down a private barge on the Loire River is a gentler way to enjoy France’s breathtaking waterways: observe wild birds, sip prized bottles of Loire Valley white wines, and enjoy the silence and peace that envelops you.
See our complete guide to France off the beaten path for more ideas on how to make your spring trip to France exciting, invigorating and luxurious.
For anyone with a passion for gourmet experiences or a novice but curious palate, Spring is a wonderful time to experience France’s world-acclaimed culinary culture with a private food tour. Every region has its spring offerings: take an eye-opening whirl through traditional markets in Provence, bursting with fresh, colourful spring produce such as asparagus, purple artichokes and creamy local cheeses.
In coastal cities such as Marseille in the south and Cancale in the north, fresh fish and shellfish make for exquisite springtime delicacies. Cancale is considered the oyster capital of France, and its “fruit of the sea” is wonderful to enjoy with crusty, fresh bread and salted Breton butter. While it can still be a bit brisk in the spring months, Brittany offers unique gastronomic discoveries for those interested in sampling distinctive forms of French cuisine.
Spring food tours around France can include meetings with artisans, from Basque country cheesemongers to Alsatian sausage makers. Of course, Paris offers an abundance of gastronomic delights: some of the very best artisans, including chocolate makers, patissiers and charcuterie makers, have shops in the French capital; the opportunities to taste extraordinary cuisine at one of Paris’ acclaimed Michelin-star restaurants are also abundant.
You may also wish to enjoy gourmet French cooking lessons and workshops, or meetings with Micheln-starred chefs ahead of enjoying a dream gastronomic dinner in a fairy-tale setting. The possibilities for delicious discovery are virtually limitless…
Since the weather starts to get a bit warmer during the spring months, it’s a marvellous time to enjoy outdoor tours that allow you to take in France’s magnificent monuments, architecture and history. Go witness breathtaking prehistoric cave art dating back thousands of years in the Dordogne region. Tour the centuries-old Gothic cathedrals of Paris, Chartres and Strasbourg, comparing how the rose windows of Notre-Dame compare to those at Chartres. Visit the D-Day beaches and stirring memorial sites of Normandy, revelling in the sacrifices made by those who fought against fascism less than 100 years ago. Witness the most beautiful Loire Valley chateaux, from Chenonceau to Chambord, and admire the Romantic storybook architecture visible in each of its turrets and spiral staircases.
The country’s rich heritage will come alive when you take a private cultural tour of France. Better than a guidebook, your private docent will unlock the little-known stories about the places you encounter, and allow you to experience them in much greater depth.
For more exciting ideas on cultural, history and architecture tours you can take this spring in France, see this page.
Spring is an ideal time to enjoy a couple’s getaway or luxury honeymoon in France. Whether you wish to spend your days together in a secluded chateau or stately home somewhere in rustic Provence or the mythical Loire Valley, embark on a romantic springtime trip to Paris, fulfilling the high romance promised by countless movies, or enjoy a glamorous, relaxing week on the Riviera, newlyweds and couples in search of some special time away will find countless possibilities awaiting them. You could even do something bold, unusual or adventurous: take a hot air balloon flight over the vineyards of Champagne, then indulge in champagne tastings in some of the region’s best cellars. Or try paragliding together, sharing the incredible experience of soaring over Provencal fields or Alsatian villages. The sky’s the limit for romance.
One of the most stressful aspects of planning a honeymoon or romantic trip together is figuring out logistics, so make sure to eliminate all that by leaning on the experts– they’ll do all the heavy lifting for you. Planning at least two months ahead is also wise if you want to make your luxury French getaway a truly extraordinary one. Why not start dreaming up your ideal romantic trip with us now?
It’s true that French wine tours are most popular in the late summer and autumn, when harvest season makes an excursion to the vineyards both festive and educational. Still, there’s something marvellous about a springtime jaunt through France’s gorgeous– and diverse– wine regions.
The air is warm, making this an ideal time to enjoy cycling tours through rustic wine country. Or perhaps a tour of the most prestigious vineyards in Burgundy, Bordeaux or flower-studded Provence aboard a vintage 2CV, would be right up your alley: letting your hair blow freely in the wind and taking memorable photos of the iconic landscapes, this is both a luxurious and retro-cool way to see the countryside in its idyllic springtime guise.
Whatever region you wish to explore, make sure you hire a private guide or privilege tours by locals rather than trying to embark on a vineyard or wine-tasting tour yourself. Only an expert will allow you to access some of France’s most exclusive cellars and production sites, granting you privileged access to celebrated winemakers and exceptional bottles.
Finally, although most major wine festivals and regional tasting events of note take place in the autumn, there are several interesting events related to the art of oenology during the springtime. The Viti Loire Festival, held in May in the French city of Tours, is an exciting opportunity to taste local wines in an extraordinary setting: surrounded by breathtaking castles and natural scenery. Meanwhile, wine-tasting festivities in Bordeaux are always authentic and prestigious. The Blaye region holds an annual wine festival within the walls if its old medieval citadel, offering a romantic and unique setting for sampling regional vintages.
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