Side Street Style: Why France is the perfect Family Destination

Side Street Style

A family travel and lifestyle blog

11/04/2018

Why France is the perfect Family Destination

Father and Son
The boys in Nice, France

France has always been very special to me, especially after living and working in Nice for a couple of months before having children. As a family we love visiting France whether it be a chic city break in Paris or getting a sun tan on the French Riviera or a quick road trip to the Opal Coast - we have always had a fantastic time as a family and it's why I picked France as the country I wanted to celebrate my 30th birthday in a few years ago.

I was pregnant at the time with my second and eldest who was four at the time was just coming into his own in terms of his passion for travel. We took the Eurostar from London to Pairs where we spent a few days exploring the array of family friendly museums and gardens before taking the fast TGV down to the South for a week of good food, relaxation, exploring small towns as well as taking in the culture of Nice and Cannes. You can read more about our stay in Valbonne and my 30th birthday celebrations ‘French style’ here.


Valbonne
Enjoying the sunshine in Valbonne


Then a year and a half ago we decided to take a little impromptu road trip to the Opal Coast in Northern France staying in the small hamlet of Hardelot near Boulogne-sur-Mer. We took the ferry from Dover to Calais and this part of France is in fact so close you could easily visit over a weekend. The ferry trip was smooth and had plenty to keep both kids entertained and time flies by, before you know it you’re in France. While there we spent a day exploring Nausicaa, Frances National Sea Centre which is located pretty much on the beach and is perfect for an action packed day out with kids.

That brings us to now and we are once again planning a trip to France, this time to Brittany this summer where we plan to spend a week by the coast, soaking up the sun and enjoying the simple pleasures of life while the kids can run free, build sandcastles and go swimming. With the weather being remarkably more reliable than ours in the UK, it makes for a great family destination when you’re craving some warm weather and we are really looking forward to our week long break.


Paris locks
My eldest looking at all the locks in Paris


What makes France the perfect family destination?

1. It's very accessible - with so many ferry services you can drive there and enjoy a road trip. France also has an excellent rail network and the Eurostar is so fast, making Lille and Paris so easy to get to - you could even visit as a day trip. There are also plenty of airlines that fly to a variety of destinations across the country for very reasonable prices.

2. It's a cheaper option compared to long-haul destinations - with so may gîtes (cottages), holiday parks and campsites, France is a great budget friendly country for families looking to get away. I would recommend booking in advance as it does get very busy in summer.

3. The weather is more reliable than the UK - Did you know that Nice in the South of France has roughly 300 days of sunshine! Even in Northern France you can pretty much guarantee good weather from May to September, making it one of our closest destinations for a proper beach break.


Water fountain
A beautiful evening in Cannes


4. It's culturally and historically rich - besides the beautiful beaches there are also plenty of castles, chateaus, art galleries, wineries, war time relics and breath taking countryside to take in. There really is something for everyone and if you’re feeling short on inspiration then do check out some of the great itineraries online to print off and work to.

5. It's foodie heaven - if food is your family’s thing then France is the destination for you, with nearly every region offering its own delicacies and traditional dishes. France is of course also a huge wine country so visiting a winery is a must.


France


What we also love about trips to France is how easy they are to organise, especially with sites such as France-Voyage out there, which are straight forward to book through and offer up plenty of inspiration and information. You can also book a variety of accommodation types through them, as well as discover attractions and restaurants and save your favourite things to do in the area that you are visiting, to reference later.

The site also has over 500,000 pages about tourism in France, so really is the best point of reference for any trips you are planning. Plus, it's updated daily so check it out if you are planning a trip this year.


French Riveria
Sunset in Nice

16 comments:

  1. Love France, it's one of our favourite Family destinations and fits our budget as well as we drive across and camp.

    Lisa J

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    1. Ohh I really want to do some camping in France this year.

      Laura x

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  2. We had a France holiday a couple of years ago and are heading back in October so see some ,more of the beautiful country

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    1. Oh so nice to hear you are heading back soon Kara

      Laura x

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  3. We went to the south of France a lot as a kids. I can't wait to take my son.

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    1. Ohh the South of France is one of my favourite places, was lucky enough to live in Nice for a while before kids - such a beautiful place

      Laura x

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  4. I love France and studied French up until year 2 in uni. I can't wait to go back before my French gets completely rusty. Paris is probably my favourite city.

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    1. Oh wow I would love to be able to speak French well!

      Laura x

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  5. I Went to Disneyland Paris last year and that was the first time since I was 16. I need to visit other places and Corsica and Cannes are on my bucket list.

    Thanks for Sharing.

    John M

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    1. Yes Cannes is so lovely - one of my favourite places. Bet Disney was ace though

      Laura x

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  6. Nice sounds like a great place to visit with 300 days of sunshine a year. It does seem very family friendly and I would love to take Mia on holiday to France. I’ve only been to Disneyland!

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  7. I have got to visit France soonest. I heard the weather is always nice as well!

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  8. I love France and it really is the perfect family destination. I love the fact it is so close to the UK too

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  9. We just adore France Laura, we have been on many cruise stops in the South which you cant not love and done a tour of Burgundy which was just magical there is something about the culture and the people that make France so special x

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  10. France is beautiful and I am planning to go back with the whole family soon. It's been one of my most favorite places!

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  11. I have never been to France but I really want to go, my daughter went to Paris last year and said it was utterly amazing!

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Lovely comments