Top 21 Winter 2023 Destinations in France for an Enchanting Holiday

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Summers in France evokes poetry, spring evokes romance, and winter? What about winter? If you have never experienced winters in France, then you are missing out on a plethora of things, one of which is having the country all to yourself. There are some of the finest destinations to explore in France during the winter season!

It does depend on the month you are planning to go there, but from November to February, you are bound to discover some of the most fascinating activities to do in France during winter. With the tourist season coming to an end, France once again belongs to the French, and this is your opportunity to blend in with the locals. Unearth the top places to visit in France in winter for an unforgettable experience.

21 Finest Destinations To Explore In France During Winter

France transforms into a vision of beauty during the winter season. If you are considering a visit to France in the winter, consider yourself fortunate to witness the country in one of its most spectacular forms. Here are 21 exceptional places to explore in France when winter arrives. Most of them are cities, so if you were looking for the best cities in France to visit during winter, here they are!

  • Nice – One Of The Most Pleasant Getaways
  • Nantes – Indulge In Classical European Music
  • Menton – Awaits The Lemon Fest
  • The French Alps And The Pyrenees – Escape To The Snow
  • Roquemaure – Embrace The Spirituality
  • Monaco – Twirl While Ice-Skating
  • Perigord – Delight Your Taste Buds
  • Camargue – Paradise For Bird Lovers
  • Corsica – Conquer The French Mountains
  • Bordeaux – Too Much Wine Is A Myth
  • Aquitaine – For A Warmer Winter
  • Provence – A Charming Paradise
  • Bloise – The City With Gothic Architecture
  • Beaune – A Walled Town In Burgundy
  • Cannes – More Than Just Award Functions
  • Calmora – Embodying The Spirit Of Winter
  • Lyon – The City Of Light
  • Martinique – For Sunbathing And Enjoying The Sea
  • Marseille – A Vibrant Port City
  • Alsace – A Historic French Region

Snow-covered Paris

1. Paris – The Obvious Choice

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The city of Paris is enchanting in every season, but in winter, adorned with a layer of snow, the trees, the Seine, and the Eiffel Tower take on a new appearance. Visit Galeries Lafayatte to catch a glimpse of the stunning Christmas tree adorned with golden ornaments. Winters are also the ideal time to indulge in ice skating, with the ice rink at Champs-Elysées being an inviting spot to glide on ice. Closer to Christmas, the entire city of Paris is adorned with twinkling fairy lights, and the streets are lined with freshly cut pine trees decorated with garlands and ornaments. You won’t find a more enchanting sight anywhere else! Truly one of the finest cities to explore in France during winter. Activities to enjoy: Eiffel Tower, Louvre Museum, Notre-Dame Cathedral Accommodation options: St Christopher’s Inn, Grand Hotel De Paris How to reach: Paris has 3 airports that are well-connected to almost every part of the world.

2. Nice – One Of The Most Pleasing Getaways

Nice during winter season

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Delight in the Nice Carnival, which lasts for over two weeks. Observe the immense floats pass by, and participate in the battle of flowers, the Flower Parade. When you visit, it is essential to stay until the end, as the flowers are plucked and showered upon the pedestrians, a spectacle you shouldn’t miss. And, do not overlook the opportunity to take a ride on the enormous Ferris wheel that is exclusively available during winter in Nice. It is one of the finest destinations to explore in France during the winter season. Activities: Promenade des Anglais, Matisse Museum Places to reside: The Negresco, Hôtel Nice Excelsior How to arrive: SNCF trains are the most dependable means of reaching Nice.

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Musical performance in Nantes

3. Nantes – Immerse Yourself in Classical European Music

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If you have a fondness for classical music, then a holiday in France is a necessity during the winter season. The Classical Music Festival in Nantes, known as La Folle Journée, is where artists from all around the world come together to perform music exactly to your liking! Without a doubt, this is one of the top cities in France to visit during winter to experience the enchantment of music. Undoubtedly, Nantes is among the best destinations to visit in France during winterThings to do: Château des ducs de Bretagne, Machines of the Isle of Nantes Places to stay: Radisson Blu Hotel, Nantes, Hotel ibis Nantes Centre Tour Bretagne How to reach: The most convenient way to reach Nantes is by taking a TGV train from Paris and alighting at Nantes.

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Beautiful Menton

4. Menton – The Lemon Fest Awaits

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If you are heading to Menton during winters, there is scarcely a thing you could do more correct. The marvelous Fête du Citron, or Lemon Festival in Menton is a work of art. Floats, statues and figurines of all sizes are erected in the center of town for two weeks, and all of them are constructed from lemons and oranges. The festival occurs towards the end of winters, and typically commemorates the arrival of spring. The opportunity to witness the colorful fruit fest in Menton is just one of the many advantages of spending winter season in France. Things to do: Val Rahmeh-Menton Botanical Garden, Serre de la Madone, Basilique Saint-Michel-Archange Places to stay: Hôtel Princess et Richmond Menton, Hôtel Lemon How to reach: You can board a regional train that runs from Nice to Ventimiglia and get off at Menton.

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Skiing in French Alps

5. The French Alps And The Pyrenees – Escape To The Snow

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When searching for the best places to visit in France in January, this is where you should go! Among other places to see in France in winter, The French Alps have got be the most stunning sight to behold in winters. January to February is the ideal time to indulge in winter activities in France. One can enjoy a wide array of snow-based pursuits, such as cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, ice climbing, ice abseiling, downhill skiing, dog sledding, and snowboarding. If you’d prefer to spectate instead of participate, the Snow Polo event held every January in Megève, one of the popular ski resorts in France. Things to do: Neuschwanstein Castle, Jungfrau, Chillon Castle Places to stay: Hotel Mercure Chamonix les Bossons, RockyPop Hotel How to reach: The place is well-connected to the other parts of the country. Grenoble is the nearest international airport.

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Musical parade in Roquemaure

6. Roquemaure – Embrace Spirituality

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If you’re searching for destinations to explore in France in February, then why not pay a visit to the village of Roquemaure, where the town church holds the mortal remains of the patron saint of lovers, St. Valentine! On the 14th of February, these relics are taken out of the vault and carried around the town in a procession. The Festou di Poutoun, the festival of the kiss, is also held around this time, on the weekend nearest to Valentine’s Day. This is one of the most enchanting places to visit in France in winter. Activities to indulge in: Parc Amazonia, Île de Miémar, Castle Manissy Accommodation options: Hôtel le Clément V, Chambre cocoon How to reach: Public transport is the best way to reach Roquemaure

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Ice-skating in Monaco

7. Monaco – Twirl As You Ice-Skate

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The Stade Nautique Rainier III in Monaco, an expansive outdoor swimming pool, transforms into an ice rink of epic proportions. There is also the option of going ice-karting, with 6 laps. Now, where else would you get the opportunity to go ice-karting, and race at never-before-seen velocities! Additionally, the pool is in close proximity to the harbor, thus offering vistas of grand yachts, Monte Carlo, and of course, the Mediterranean Sea. Ice-skating is one of the must-try activities in France in winter. But that’s not all! The fauna in Monaco is another one of the thrilling aspects and you can’t afford to overlook it! Activities to indulge in: Casino Monte-Carlo, Musée océanographique de Monaco, Prince’s Palace of Monaco Accommodation options: Hotel de Paris Monte-Carlo, Fairmont Monte Carlo, Hotel Novotel Monte Carlo How to reach: Nice – Cote d’Azur Airport is situated 22 km away from Monaco and offers regular connectivity.

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Truffles in Perigord

8. Perigord – Excite Your Taste Buds

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If you explore France in winter, then Perigord is a place you must visit! Although no longer native to France, black truffles are still a delicacy that many associate with Perigord, a special region in the country. The optimal time to enjoy the freshest French winter black truffles is from December to March, with January and February being the moment when they achieve the pinnacle of their taste and aroma. Go ahead, satisfy your appetite! Things to do: Discovering Lascaux, The Marqueyssac gardens, Castelnaud-la-Chapelle Castle Places to stay: Logis Hostellerie du Périgord Vert, Hôtel Le Relax How to reach: You can board Dordogne, the high-speed train from any of the nearest railway stations to reach Perigord.

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Flamingos in Camargue

9. Camargue – Bird-Lover’s Paradise

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When pondering where to go in France in winter, don’t overlook Camargue. Camargue, in summers brimming with locals and tourists on camping trips, tells a different tale in winters. It falls on the migratory path and is an oasis for bird enthusiasts as numerous bird species spend the winter season here, making it one of the most enchanting places to visit in France in winter. A particular favorite are the pink flamingos, whose plumage becomes even more vibrant during this time of year, preparing for their yearly mating ritual. Things to do: Discovering Arles Amphitheatre, Church of St. Trophime, Musée de l’Arles et de la Provence antiques Places to stay: Hôtel les bains de Camargue, Le Mas de Peint, Mas de Sylvereal Camargue How to reach: The nearest airport to Camargue is located in Nîmes, Marseille Provence, which is well-connected via road.

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Hiking in Corsica

10. Corsica – Conquer the French Mountains

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When contemplating where to spend winter in France, consider a visit to Corsica. Perhaps you have witnessed an abundance of snow and indulged in skiing, but if you do find yourself in France during the winter season, make your way to Corsica for a milder climate. With fewer tourists present, you can partake in trekking, mountain scaling, and game hunting, all while enjoying a sunny Christmas! Activities to indulge in: Calanques de Piana, Scandola Nature Reserve, Cap Corse Accommodation options: U Paesolu, Hotel Artemisia, Radisson Blu Resort & Spa, Ajaccio Bay How to get there: Corsica is well-connected to Ajaccio, Bastia, Calvi, and Figari airports.

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Choicest wine in Bordeaux

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Indulging in various types of wines is regarded as one of the top activities to experience in France. Exploring Bordeaux, one of the finest cities in France during winter (or any time of the year!), is a true delight, especially for wine enthusiasts. Although you won’t have the opportunity to witness vineyards in full bloom, you will have ample wine selection at your disposal. Numerous wine tasting festivals take place during the winter months, offering you the chance to have the place almost all to yourself since the tourist season is winding down. If you are visiting France in February, consider this destination a must-visit. Activities to engage in: Exploring Place de la Bourse, Bordeaux Cathedral, Place des Quinconces, etc. Accommodation options: Bordeaux Ville Arena, Seeko’o Hôtel Design Bordeaux, Hotel De l’Opéra How to get there: The most efficient way to reach Bordeaux is via the well-connected beltway, despite the potential crowds.

12. Aquitaine – For An Warmer Winter


So, once you’ve played around in snow, you would definitely be on a lookout for an warm weather if you’re visiting France in winter. This beautiful place is renowned for its surfing situation which indeed is buzzing around the year, particularly in Moilets beach. This place should definitely be in your itinerary when wondering where to spend winter in France. The sunny beaches of Aquitaine are picturesque and are excellent for leisurely unwinding as well, making it one among the top places to visit in France in December. It acts as a gateway to Bordeaux and Dordogne. Also, don’t forget to attend Carnaval de Periguex and Festival du Film at Sarlat if you’re around here during winter. Activities to do: exploring Places to stay: LE DOMAINE DE GUILLALMES, Belair le Camping, Domaine de Bellevue How to reach: The optimal way to reach Aquitaine is via bus. You can board any of the local buses from the city you are staying as Aquitaine is well-connected to other parts of France.

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13. Provence – A Comfortable Paradise

A woman holding wine glass amidst lavender field in Provence, France

Located in Southern France, Provence enjoys a serene, crowd-less winter season with temperature ranging around 14 degrees. This means you can enjoy a comfortable time on your French vacation without worrying about massive tourist crowd around. The bustling Christmas market will have you in the best of your moods! Provence is a lovely pick if you’re looking forward to further head to Nice and Marseilles. This is one of the finest places in France to visit in winter. Activities to do: Sightseeing at French Riviera, Verdon Gorge, Palais des Papes Places to stay: Le Club Mougins by Diamond Resorts, Logis Hôtel de Provence How to reach: Provence is well-connected via air, water, and land to the other parts of the country.

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14. Bloise – The Gothic City

is a hillside town proudly situated on the banks of the . This place exudes a late vibe with its ancient cathedral and cobbled streets. If you’re wondering about , then this is it. The regal palace – – boasts lavishly decorated chambers, paintings, and sculptures from the 16th to 19th century. The city is a perfect destination during the winter months when the breezy atmosphere adds to its antique charm. Standing on the bridge and gazing at the tranquil river creates a romantic moment for you and your partner. : Plan a visit to , , , etc. : , , . : The best way to reach Bloise is by taking trains to Tours or Orléans.

A bridge in the Bloise city on the river Loire in France

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15. Beaune – A Fortified Town In Burgundy

Beaune is a fortified town in the heart of the Burgundy wine-making region in France. This place is considered to be one of the top , as it houses many intimate French restaurants. It’s the perfect time of the year to indulge in France’s finest red wines and savor dishes like Beef Bourginon and Coq au Vin. Don’t miss visiting the architecturally stunning . : Explore the , , , etc. : , . : High-speed trains and regional trains are the most convenient modes of transportation to reach Beaune.

Beaune in Burgundy, France

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16. Cannes – Beyond Award Ceremonies

Situated in the southern part of France, Cannes experiences its fair share of winter. Although it doesn’t get as chilly as other parts of the Northern Hemisphere, temperatures do drop to 14 °C, providing pleasant weather during the winter in France. This is one of the finest destinations to enjoy the winter season in France. A visit to this remarkable place during this time will be an unforgettable experience. One of the best things to do in Cannes during winter is taking a leisurely stroll along the marina. : Wander around the marina, marvel at the yachts. : . : The closest point of entry is Nice Côte d’Azur Airport. Alternatively, you can travel by train to Cannes.

take a trip to Cannes

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17. Colmar – Essence Of Winter

Colmar is among the finest destinations to explore during France winters. The shimmering lights, the aroma of wine, and the cozy atmosphere of the town uplift the spirits in the winter season. The markets of Colmar offer a wide range of presents, gastronomic delights, and an array of activities to engage in. The place boasts numerous indoor eateries that offer fantastic choices in terms of beverages and dining. Things To Do: Indulge in beverages and fine dining at Michelin-starred establishments. Places To Stay: Colmar Hotel How To Reach: Take a train from Paris l’Est to Colmar

Colmar Tropicale French Village

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18. Lyon – City of Illumination

Lyon is considered one of the top destinations to visit in France during winters due to the wide range of activities that can be enjoyed, such as sightseeing, exploring museums, and visiting silk shops. During this season, you can witness the magnificent Festival of Lights, which has now become one of the most thrilling tourist attractions. Observing the Festival of Lights is just one of the numerous activities to engage in Lyon. This is also an ideal place to savor French cuisine. Lyon is renowned as one of the prime cities to explore in France in January. Things To Do: Experience the Festival of Lights. Places To Stay: Première Classe Lyon Centre Gare Part Dieu How To Reach: Take a train from Paris Gare De Lyon to Lyon Part Dieu

gives the spiritual vibes and charm

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19. Martinique – For Sunbathing And Some Ocean Bliss

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Craving for some sunshine and sand amidst the chilly France Winterss? Well, here is your ticket to get it! One of the premier destinations in France during winter, Martinique is a splendid Caribbean paradise adorned with palm trees, pristine sandy beaches, and the enchanting ocean. Opting for a stay at a beachfront hotel in Martinique will enhance your experience. Take a leisurely stroll along the beach, explore the stunning botanical gardens, embark on a volcano trek, or perhaps engage in all of these wonderful activities in the picturesque Martinique. An island with a storied and captivating past, Martinique is an unmissable gem! Things To Do: Embark on a volcano trek and engage in scuba diving. Places To Stay: Hotel Bambou Martinique, Simon Hotel How To Reach: Martinique Aimé Césaire Airport serves as the primary gateway to Martinique.

Martinique France

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20. Marseille – A Port City

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One of the greatest French urban communities to visit in winter without a doubt is Marseille. It is additionally one of the most underestimated ones yet you shouldn’t ignore it! A port city which presently has numerous journey transport travelers visiting it, Marseille encounters a mysterious and captivating winter, the best part being that it is moderately hotter than different zones. On the off chance that we talk about the bone-chilling chilly, at that point that comes in December and the city is so caught up with Christmas adornments and celebrations that you will disregard it and appreciate everything. Activities: Attempt French Provençal dishes, take an excursion to Old Port Spots To Stay: InterContinental Marseille, Hotel Manon, Hotel Le Ryad How To Reach: Marseille-Provence Airport is the closest air terminal and is found only 27 kilometers away.

Marseille France

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21. Alsace – A Historical French Region

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Searching for spots to go in France in winter? All things considered, look no further on the grounds that we as of now have the best one for you. OK, enough of mystery games! Its Alsace. In the event that you wish to see a district that has held the former world appeal in the most captivating and excellent way conceivable go to Alsace and you will be wonderfully astonished! With many Alsatian towns and the authentic towns of Colmar and Strasbourg, Alsace makes for a sight to observe! Activities: Touring, visit the cute bistros, visit the verifiable wine trails Spots To Stay: Ibis Strasbourg Center Historique, James Boutique Hotel How To Reach: Strasbourg Airport is the closest air terminal to Alsace and is found at a separation of 41 kilometers.

Alsace France

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France is dazzling in any season and the best part is that it appears to be unique in every season! Be that as it may, winters are uncommon; they give you a sentiment of being at home in this traveler center. The previously mentioned places to visit in France in winter are altogether viewed as features of the nation. Plan an outing to France in Winters, to get the best French encounters. Let us know in the remarks beneath and offer this with your movement mates.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In France In Winter

What can you do in France in the winter?

France has its own allure in winter, from ski resorts to vivid carnivals, shopping at christmas markets, sampling delicious winter french food, enjoying activities like snowshoeing and ice climbing to witnessing stunning mountain ranges there are numerous things you can do in France in the winter.

What is the coldest city in France?

Mouthe is known for having the chilliest recorded temperature in France.

Is France open for international tourists, after the covid situation?

Yes, France has opened its borders for international tourists. However, one should be completely vaccinated to enter France. Additionally, make a point to follow all the guidelines and take necessary precautions even while traveling.

Which are the best places to celebrate Christmas in France?

Paris, Toulouse, Morzine, Montbéliard, are a portion of the most famous spots to celebrate Christmas in France where you can encounter clamoring boutiques and one of a kind mood that add to the merriments of the season.

Is the Eiffel Tower open in December?

Yes. The Eiffel Tower in December is open from 9:30 am to 11:45 pm. The last entry to the tower is at 11 pm, and for the top at 10:30 pm.

Does Paris have Christmas markets?

Yes. Paris has various Christmas markets where significant shopping occasions are held from November onwards. The absolute most well known ones are Marché de Noël at Notre Dame, Le Village de Noël at Les Halles, Abbesses Christmas Market at Montmartre, Village de Noël at Champs de Mars, Village de Noël at La Défense, Alsatian Christmas Market at Gare de l’Est, and Marché de Noel at Saint Germain des Prés.

What do you wear in France in winter?

Winter Skirts and Dresses matched with fleece tights, boot socks, and a couple of boots would be an ideal decision of apparel for the frosty winter days in France. Fleece skirts, slight sweaters, and a pleasant thick scarf would be extraordinary to handle a day of touring in France.

What is the best time of year to visit France?

Spring (April to June) and Fall (September to November) are viewed as ideal occasions for visit France. During the referenced seasons, the climate can fluctuate from one spot to another yet the group is commonly lesser. Nonetheless, France is a year-round objective, you simply need to pick your objections cautiously!

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