France is a country where supreme wining and dining mesh seamlessly with beautiful scenery, a distinct sense of culture and a proud national history. As a destination, it offers something for every taste and budget. While the well-known tourist spots are definitely worth a visit, there’s a another side to France that is full of a charm that many travellers don’t get to see. Here are 4 of the best places to meet the locals on your trip through France.
Know Your Local Café
If you really want to get to know the local people, you have to find their favourite café! There’s nothing more quintessentially French than sitting outdoors sipping a strong coffee and enjoying a warm buttery croissant as you watch the world go by. Cafés provide a meeting point for the local people to catch up and enjoy each other’s company, and by finding the best one in your area, you will be able to immerse yourself in the local culture. It’s a simple yet fulfilling experience, so grab a good book and spend a few hours enjoying the best that French café culture has to offer.
Almost every town boasts a thriving market where all of the locals meet and spend the day browsing goods and crafts. You will be able to gain a deeper understanding of what it is like to live like a local by spending a few hours wandering through the markets and seeing the fresh produce, gourmet goods, arts and crafts from the village. There’s simply nothing like a traditional French market, from the vendors spruiking their wares to the locals looking for the best bargains, the air is filled with a unique energy and bustling vibe that simply has to be experienced.
Visit the Church
Even those who aren’t religious will find that the local church is a great place to understand more about the culture and history of a town or region. From magnificent cathedrals to quaint country chapels, each one has a unique story to tell. To really see how the locals live, attend one of the Sunday masses for a truly unique travel experience.
A Gourmet Adventure
One of the best ways to meet the locals is to do a tour of the village and visit each of the traditional producers of gourmet goods. In the charcuterie, you’ll find the tastiest local cured meats and delicatessen style produce, while the boulangerie will fill you with the irresistible scent of freshly baked bread of every kind. The local chocolatier is a master of their craft with simply delectable handmade chocolates and sweet treats perfect for the sweet toothed traveller. For an experience like no other, spend some time in the patisserie and see the amazing workmanship that goes into creating the finest pastries, cakes and tarts for your enjoyment.
You will meet an incredible array of people, from the artisans to the locals who frequent their establishments as part of their daily shopping routine. Whether it’s warm croissants or the finest saucisson, your day will be filled with tempting treats that will sate any appetite.
Discover France like a local with these great ways to explore the path less travelled. For more info on the best French flight deals, be sure to check out Flight Centre. Saving money on your tickets let you increase your travel budget and have more to spend on exploring France from a local’s perspective. Let yourself delve deeper into the unique culture of this beautiful country, and enjoy a truly unforgettable travel experience.