Where to go on holiday in France this summer?

Où partir en France cet été 2020

Where to go on holiday in France this summer? Seeing the peak in attendance on my article dedicated to the most beautiful places in France, I wanted to publish a small article to encourage my visitors to travel to France this summer, and encourage them to discover the least touristy places in the country.

Bethmale Lake @ Pierre PRESTAT (Flickr CC)

The four criteria that I used to choose the destinations where to go on vacation in France this summer are:

– Destinations in France far from the crowds and the beaten track
– Ideal for two weeks of vacation with family, couple, or friends
– Places to settle and from which to shine
– Finally, we avoid the departments that will be affected by the 2020 drought

Where to go on vacation in France this summer 2020?

Source: Ministry of Ecological Transition

Where to go on holiday in France this summer

So I made this list by selecting the least touristy departments in France, from which I subtracted the departments concerned by the drought of summer 2020 according to the forecasts of the Ministry of Ecological Transition. And, of course, by withdrawing the rare French departments which are of no interest to me.

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1. Dig

If you are wondering where to go on holiday in France this summer, Creuse is not necessarily the first destination that will come to mind. However, the least touristy department in France has many assets! Here are some ideas of things to see and do in the Creuse:

  • Admire the panoramic landscape from the ruins of the Château de Crozant
  • Immerse yourself in the scenovision of Bénévent-l’Abbaye to discover life in the Creuse of the 19th century
  • Visit the forgotten villages of the land of 3 lakes
  • Visit the Guéret mountains animal park
  • Take a walk along the Verger gorges
  • Find solitude in the Millevaches Regional Natural Park, the least densely populated place in France

To know more : website of the Creuse Tourist Office

2. Ariège

  • Discover the Bethmale valley
  • Browse the alleys of Saint-Lizier, classified by Unesco
  • Admire the panorama from the castle of Montsegur, and dive into the history of the Cathars
  • Meet the shepherds, craftsmen, beekeepers, cabinet makers, artists, breeders, local pastry chefs
  • Walk, walk, walk, hike in nature or on the GR10
  • Make a part of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela

To know more : website of the Ariège Pyrénées Tourist Office

3. Gers

  • Follow the route of the castelnaux and bastides, magnificent fortified villages
  • Spend the night of the stars in August at La Ferme des étoiles
  • Take a tour of the armagnac cellars
  • Visit the Samatan fat market to taste foie gras
  • Take yourself for the fifth musketeer at the castelnau de Lupiac
  • Discover the Marciac Jazz Festival… from home
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To know more : Gers Tourist Office website

4. Ardennes

  • Admire the superb modern stained glass windows of the Notre-Dame-d’Espérance basilica
  • Cross the Ardennes along the trans-Ardennes greenway, on foot, on horseback, rollerblading, by bike
  • Contemplate one of the most beautiful panoramas in France from La Roche at 7h00
  • Visit the largest fortified castle in Europe in Sedan
  • Walk in the footsteps of Rimbaud in Charleville-Mézières
  • Discover the steep cliffs of Pointe de Givet and the wooded meanders of the Ardennes Regional Natural Park

To know more : Ardennes Tourist Office website

5. Mayenne

  • Stroll along the 4000 km of marked paths along the Mayenne on foot, by bike, on horseback, by barge …
  • Fall in love with Sainte-Suzanne, one of the “most beautiful villages in France”
  • Stroll through the impressive châteaux of Lassay-les-Châteaux
  • Discover part of the 630 km of the Vélo Francette, between the landing beaches (Calvados) and the port of La Rochelle (Charente-Maritime)
  • Practice freshwater fishing
  • Discover the route of the jewels of Mayenne to meet the department with the most inhabited private castles

To know more : Mayenne Tourist Office website

6. Lot-et-Garonne

  • Discover the cradle of Armagnac
  • Stroll through the beautiful medieval villages and bastides of the department
  • Take one of the 428 hiking trails, smell the scent of the pines of the Landes Forest for example
  • Get your stomach full by enjoying one of the most gourmet departments in France
  • Listen to a Raconteurs de Pays, these enthusiasts in love with Lot-et-Garonne who offer an authentic and original vision of their territory through stories
  • Pedal on one end of the Canal des Deux Mers
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To know more : Lot-et-Garonne Tourist Office website

7. Tarn

  • Discover the episcopal city of Albi
  • Visit the Toulouse-Lautrec museum in the bishops’ palace
  • Participate (in costume) in the oldest medieval festival in France in Cordes
  • Stroll along the colorful houses of Castres
  • Taste the Gaillac vineyard, the oldest in France
  • Discover the countless hilltop villages, fortified bastides, Remarkable Gardens, historical monuments and UNESCO World Heritage of Tarn

To know more : Tarn Tourist Office website

Where to go on holiday in France this summer?

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