NORTHERN FRANCE HOLIDAY DESTINATIONS
Are you starting to plan your next holiday and want to cross the Channel? You are looking for a great family holiday in northern france ? As one of the top tourist destinations in the world, France has many assets. The country has very beautiful regions with exceptional natural parks, sumptuous beaches, a rich culture and history...not to mention a gastronomy that appeals to everyone ! So it's decided, this year your holidays will be spent in the north of France.
But you still need to know where to go on holiday in France. Indeed, the country is big and it is not always easy to know the best tourist places & towns to explore in the North of France when you come from abroad. Let's go we'll take you from the Opal Coast to the Champagne region!
We’re going to introduce you to the best holiday destinations in the northern part of France. This part of the country has the advantage of being relatively close to border countries such as the United Kingdom, Belgium and the Netherlands. It is therefore a good way to discover French life & culture without having to travel too far. However, you will see that the North of France should never be a choice out of spite. It's a great place to visit and we'll show it to you!
If you are coming from the UK it will be very easy for you to reach France. First of all, you have the Eurostar, although more expensive, which allows you to reach the North of France in less than 2 hours from London St Pancras. You can then stop in Calais on the Opal Coast, Lille, the largest city in the Hauts de France region, or the French capital, Paris.
If you want to come to France with your car because it is more convenient and that driving on the right side of the road doesn't scare you, we also have the solution. You will have the choice between taking the shuttle from Folkestone or the ferry from Dover. It is actually very easy to come and spend your holidays in the north of France and the super convenient means of transport remain unchanged even with Brexit.
The northern part of France is sumptuous and full of activities and places to visit. We have tried to select for you the best places to spend your holidays in France in a place above Paris. You'll see, you're bound to find the one that suits you best and you'll be able to spend a great holiday there!
The Opal Coast region is located just across the border from England making it an easy area to visit if you are coming from the UK. But the next time you are in the North of France don't make Calais your only stopover and linger a while in the region which has a lot to offer.
We advise you to visit the 2 Caps site which is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. On one side you have the Cap Blanc Nez and the small beach of Escalles with its white chalk cliffs which are very impressive. A few kilometres further on you can find the Cap Gris Nez which is the closest place to England in terms of kilometres: it's an even wilder and more authentic place! The beach of Wissant which is nestled between the two Capes is even considered to be one of the most beautiful in France.
Then we also recommend you to visit the famous seaside resorts such as Wimereux, Le Touquet or Berck-sur-Mer. They are very pleasant little towns to visit in summer and winter, you will love to walk around, get lost in the sand dunes and laze on the beach when the weather permits. You should know that the best beaches of northern France are on the Opal Coast ! Indeed, the beaches are really big and it is very pleasant to spend time there. For example, in the summer, even when it's very hot and a lot of people go to the beach it's never a real problem: the beaches are so big that there's always room for everyone. You will never have the impression of suffocating and being stuck to each other as it can be the case on the French Riviera for example.
If you're more in the mood for a city trip, head for Boulogne sur Mer. It is a fascinating city with plenty of activities to do between its fishing port, its old town with its beautiful cathedral built in the 19th century and Nausicaa, the largest aquarium in Europe.
The region of Lille and the Nord pas de Calais in general is full of different activities to do. Lille is the capital of the region, it is also called "The Capital of Flanders" and you can easily hang around a weekend or more there! You'll love strolling between the “Grand Place”, the old stock exchange or through the narrow streets of the old town of Lille.
The Lille region is also the ideal place to enjoy the gastronomy of the North of France between the famous moules frites, the french cheese called maroilles or the Flemish carbonnade in the famous restaurants called "estaminets".
If you go a little further away from Lille it is a completely different story that you can discover: that of a mining and industrial past in towns like Lens for example. You don't come to this part of Northern France for its exoticism but for its friendliness and its rich historical past. You will be able to discover the Louvres museum, a mining town or the highest slag heaps in Europe.
A little further east we recommend that you spend your holiday in the Champagne region of northern France. The Champagne routes will satisfy you especially if you like this drink.
During a visit to this region we recommend that you visit the immense Champagne cellars: for this you will find what you are looking for around Reims or the town of Epernay. Speaking of cities, Reims is very beautiful and you can easily devote a day or two there.
Finally, if you feel like it, we advise you to try the life of a castle and discover the French refinement of yesteryear!
So that's it, we've convinced you to visit the north of France? As you can see it there's a thousand reasons to visit these french places. We all know that after reading this article you are only waiting for one thing: to visit our beautiful coast in the north of France, to see beautiful cathedrals, to eat in typical French restaurants and to experience a fabulous trip!
Picardy is a lovely region in France that you should not neglect. There are several Picardy sites that are a must to visit during a stay in the north of France. For example, you can go and explore the lively and pleasant capital of Picardy which is named Amiens. This city is rich in art and history especially thanks to its gothic cathedral which is a must when visiting the city.
The Baie de Somme is the ideal place for nature and bird lovers and stretches from Fort Mahon to Mers les Bains. On one side we have the long white sandy beaches where it is very pleasant to stroll. On the other side we have the Parc du Marquenterre which is an exceptional ornithological park: it is necessarily a wetter place with its marshes but you can observe hundreds of different species. This place is proof that the north of France is a very natural region.
Finally, if you are a lover of castles and old days stories, we recommend a visit to the Château de Chantilly in the Oise. Ideally, you should spend the day there to visit the entire estate: you can then discover the parks and gardens, the large stables, the museum and enjoy the equestrian shows and entertainment depending on the period you come to visit. This will allow you to discover the customs and traditions of France in the past.
The region is bathed by the English Channel and it is a heritage that you must absolutely learn about during your holidays in the north of France.
First of all we recommend you to visit the small seaside towns which are mythical for their activities, their typical Norman architecture and their charm such as Cabourg, Deauville or Honfleur for example.
If you are interested in historical events and you are passionate about the Second World War, Normandy is a region that you absolutely must visit. Indeed, it is in Normandy and in towns like Arromanches that you will be able to see the memorials, the landing beaches and the military cemeteries of the Second World War. You are going to go back in time to this painful period which marked the history of France but also of the whole world.
Finally, make a stop at the cliffs of Etretat which are very impressive. You will then be able to admire the view of these sumptuous cliffs either from the adapted path or from the sea. You can also go as far as the Mont St Michel of course, but it is already on the border of Brittany.
Paris is a city not to be missed & the Ile de France region is also full of treasures. If we talk about Paris in itself, a few words wouldn't be enough to tell you all the things to do in this incredible city.
That's why we advise you to go directly to the Paris tourist office website to find out what to do during your visit to the capital. You'll be spoilt for choice with a wide range of activities and places to visit: Montmartre, the Ile de la Cité, the Eiffel Tower...!
If you want to get away from the centre of Paris we advise you to go to the Palace of Versailles which is very easily accessible by public transport. The Château bears witness to a very rich historical past, you can visit the museum as well as the impressive gardens of the castle.
Finally, if you are in the mood for fun, take advantage of your stay in the North of France to visit the Disneyland Paris park in the town of Marne La Vallée ! Happiness and good humour are guaranteed in the fairy-tale world of Disney!
Northern France is the perfect destination if you want to come with your whole family. Whatever the region and final destination of your choice you can have a great holiday because it can suit everyone. If you want to come with your pet, please note that our holiday rentals on the Opal Coast also accept pets. The promise of a great family holiday in the north of France!
While families with children may prefer to visit the Opal Coast for its long sandy beaches, history lovers may prefer Normandy. It all depends on your lifestyle, your desires and the composition of your family. Not all places in the world allow you to come with just any member of your family and still make everyone happy. And it's true that between ports, natural parks, beaches, museums... everyone will be happy spending their holidays in the north of France! Do you know what the whole family might agree on at the end of the day? A good meal in a real French restaurant! Believe us you're probably going to fall in love with French gastronomy and wanting to come back as soon as possible for another holiday in the north of France.