Guide to Authentic Luxury Travel in France

Wander With Wonder – Discovering Wow Moments Around the World or Across the Street

Explore the epitome of luxury travel in France, from the captivating French Riviera to enchanting Paris. You can stay in luxurious hotels, enjoy Michelin-starred dining, and taste exquisite wine.

France is elegant, making it a perfect destination for those seeking luxury. If you’re embarking on a luxury trip to France, this article is your guide to enjoying the finest aspects of French luxury travel, from the best time to visit and the best things to do to the best places to stay and what to pack for your trip. Whether strolling through the pretty Parisian streets or cruising the French Riviera, this guide ensures your travels are nothing short of extraordinary.

Central square in the old town of Aix-en-Provence city in the south of France. Photo courtesy iStock by Getty Images

When is the Best Time to Visit France?        

The best times to visit France for luxury travel are spring (April to June) and fall (September to October). Spring weather is pleasant, with blooming flowers and fewer tourists. Fall offers a similar charm, with mild temperatures and the added beauty of vibrant autumn foliage. Both seasons allow you to indulge in high-end experiences without the peak summer crowds.

Carcassonne, France, highlights the beauty of the country in spring. Photo by Susan Lanier-Graham

When you visit in spring or fall, you can relish Michelin-starred dining, stay in opulent chateaux, and explore iconic destinations like Paris, the French Riviera, and Bordeaux’s wine country. The Cote d’Azur is bustling with events like the Cannes Film Festival in May, while Paris is always abuzz with cultural and fashion events. For wine enthusiasts, fall is the perfect time, as it coincides with the grape harvest in regions like Bordeaux and Burgundy, offering exclusive vineyard tours and tastings.

Getting Around France

There are many ways to get around France on your luxury trip. Depending on your travel style, you can explore its diverse regions in many ways.

For a unique and luxurious travel experience, you can book barge cruises in France, a perfect option for a luxury break. These elegant vessels navigate France’s intricate network of canals and rivers, offering a slow-paced, intimate way to see the country. You’ll enjoy gourmet meals, exceptional service, and the opportunity to disembark for private tours of local attractions, vineyards, and bustling markets.

Half-timbered homes line the streets and canal in Colmar, France. Photo by Janoka82 via iStock by Getty Images

Traveling by train is also an efficient and comfortable way to get around. The TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse) connects major cities like Paris, Lyon, and Marseille, offering high-speed travel and scenic views.

Car rentals provide the freedom to explore off-the-beaten-path destinations at your own pace. It is perfect for exploring regions like Provence or the Loire Valley, where charming villages and historic sites are easily accessible by car. France’s well-maintained highways and scenic routes make driving a pleasure.

Domestic flights are also an option for quickly covering long distances and connecting cities like Paris, Nice, and Bordeaux. Whichever mode you choose, France’s transportation infrastructure ensures a seamless and enjoyable way to explore the country.

The Best Things to Do in France   

France allows you to explore in the most luxurious way possible. It offers plenty of exclusive experiences, highlighting the country’s charm and cultural richness.

Built between 1578 and 1607, Pont Neuf, the “new bridge,” is the oldest standing bridge across La Seine in Paris. Photo by Eric Jay Toll

Here are some of the best things to do in France on a luxury travel:

Explore Paris in style. Visit iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, and Notre Dame Cathedral. Enjoy private tours and skip-the-line access to avoid crowds.
Indulge in gourmet dining. Dine at Michelin-starred restaurants for exquisite French cuisine.
Wine tasting. Discover world-class vineyards in Bordeaux and enjoy private tastings of acclaimed wines like Margaux and Saint-Emilion. Or visit the famous Champagne houses in Reims.
Chateau living in the Loire Valley. Stay in a luxurious chateau and explore the historic castles and gardens of the Loire Valley.
Relax in the Riviera. Relax on the coast of the French Riviera, enjoying yacht cruises, beach clubs, and the glamorous atmosphere of Cannes and Saint-Tropez.
Discover art and culture in Provence. Experience the artistic legacy of Van Gogh in Arles, explore the lavender fields of Provence, and stay in boutique hotels in picturesque villages like Gordes.
Unwind in a spa. Unwind at luxury spas in regions like Provence or the Alps, where you can indulge in rejuvenating pampering and wellness programs.

Spring on the Côte d’Azur. Photo by Susan Lanier-Graham

The Best Places to Stay in France

For a luxury trip to France, consider staying at magnificent chateaux, luxurious hotels, and exclusive retreats that epitomize French elegance and hospitality. Explore the Loire Valley for grand chateaux with opulent rooms and expansive gardens. Along the French Riviera, indulge in glamorous hotels and resorts nestled along the Mediterranean coast. These properties boast private beaches, Michelin-starred dining, and world-class spa facilities.

Château de la Messardière near St. Tropez, France. Photo courtesy Château de la Messardière

In Paris, opt for a palace hotel renowned for its sophisticated decor, exceptional service, and proximity to iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre Museum. Boutique hotels in Provence offer intimate settings amidst lavender fields and vineyards, providing a tranquil escape with gourmet dining and wellness amenities. The French Alps are home to luxurious ski resorts with panoramic mountain views, ski-in/ski-out access, gourmet restaurants, and lavish spas.

When planning your luxury getaway, consider using luxury vacation specialists who can book luxury vacations in France and will help you decide the best places to stay. Whether you prefer historical chateaux, chic urban hotels, or secluded countryside estates, these experts can help you choose the perfect retreat for an unforgettable stay in France.

What to Pack for a Trip to France

Don’t forget to pack essentials for diverse experiences and sophisticated settings when embarking on luxury travel in France. Here’s a list to guide you:

Elegant Attire. Pack stylish outfits for fine dining, evenings out, and exploring chic cities like Paris or Cannes.
Comfortable Shoes. Include classy yet comfortable footwear for walking tours and exploring historic sites.
Travel Accessories. Bring a quality camera for capturing memories, a portable charger, and a travel adapter for European outlets.
Toiletries. Carry high-quality skincare and grooming products to pamper yourself in France.
Travel Documents. Don’t forget your passport, travel insurance details, and any necessary visas.
Guidebooks and Maps are handy for navigating cities and planning excursions to vineyards, museums, and more.
Evening Accessories. Pack accessories like a scarf or shawl for cooler evenings and upscale events.
Swimwear. Bring swimwear for poolside relaxation if you visit coastal areas or luxurious resorts.

Minerve, France. Photo by Susan Lanier-Graham

When You Travel to France

France is the epitome of elegance, making it an ideal destination for luxury travelers. If you’re planning a luxurious trip to France, this article is your ultimate guide to experiencing the finest aspects of French luxury travel. We’ve got you covered, from the optimal time to visit and the must-see attractions to the most exquisite accommodations and essential packing tips. Whether you’re exploring the enchanting streets of Paris, indulging in the glamorous atmosphere of the French Riviera, or treating your taste buds to a champagne-filled adventure, France promises a luxurious journey like no other.

Ready to embark on your own luxury escape? Read more of our favorite articles about traveling in France.

The post Guide to Authentic Luxury Travel in France appeared first on Wander With Wonder.