France

France is the largest country in western Europe, and also the most visited country in the world. France has a lot to offer any traveler. France has Atlantic, Mediterranean and English Channel coastlines. Paris is a gem of a city. France is one of the best countries in the world to camp in. Driving is easy, roads are good.

Regions

Articles

Recommended France

  • Paris – endless word class museums, The Eiffel Tower, fine bars and restaurants, Parisian street life, outstanding architecture.
  • Cote d’Azur – beautiful beaches, the warm Mediterranean sea, and the Principality of Monaco
  • Food – French food is worth the hype.
  • Wine – probably the worlds best
  • Dune de Pyla – Europe’s biggest sand dune in Gironde
  • Western and south western FranceBiarritz and endless beautiful beaches
  • Brittany – rugged coastline and Celtic connections
  • Normandy – pay your respects to the servicemen at the beaches and fine memorials

Campsites and free camping in France

French campsites and among the best in Europe, and free camping areas are provided. What more could a camper want? Read more.

Vehicle ferries to and from France

There are many ferries to chose from when getting a vehicle to and from France. See the ferry section.

Driving in France

Driving in France is generally safe and easy. Read more.

Crime

France is a relatively safe and crime-free country. Vehicle break-ins are amongst the biggest problems, so always secure your vehicle, and leave nothing on display. Sensible parking can also reduce you risk of a break-in.

Costs

France is an expensive country. Fuels is expensive, campsites can be expensive, but free camping is provided. Eating out can be expensive, but ingredients are great and cheap. See the country cost comparison.

Information

Currency Euro (€)
Capital city Paris
Time zone +1hr GMT
Religion Catholic and Muslim
Emergency numbers General emergency 115
Police 17
Ambulance 15
International operator 1008
Electricity 220v continental
Border crossings France is a Schengen state

 

Geography

French food and drink

Food and drink is a highlight of France. Home of the baguette, Camembert, brie and some of the worlds best wines. Read more.

The French Language

English is understood in most tourist areas, but speaking French will get you further. If you learnt French at school it is worth trying to use it in France. It may be easier than you think. The French speak quite slowly (when compared to the Spanish) and having at least a few phrases is worthwhile. Try a French language CD for use in the car when driving, you can learn a lot from these.

Health

Health care is excellent and generally free, but European residents need to get a E-111 card from your home country.

Surfing in France

France has thousands of kilometers of coastline, with hundreds of breaks to choose from. Biarritz, Hossegor, Lacanau-Ocean, and many other places to try.

Articles

West coast France

Les Sables-d’Olonne Les Sables-d’Olonne Campsites Camping Roses (Municipal campsite) Rue des Roses A lovely leafy quite campsite 400m from the beach.  About €20 for 2 people in September. Expensive.

Brittany

Brittany has a rugged coastline, and many connections with southwest Britain. It is a beautiful place to visit when the weather is good, but the winter arrives early here.

Camping in France

There are few countries as good as France to camp in. The French love to camp, and there are good quality campsites everywhere, although they can be expensive. Free camping is tolerated, and special aire de campings are provided.

Driving in France

Driving in France is straightforward. The road network is excellent. Most motorways are toll roads, although some are free, so its worth checking when planning a long journey. French drivers are generally of a good standard, although some are a little impatient.

French food and drink

French food French food is one of the highlights of visiting France. Patisserie sell lovely pastries such as pain au chocolat, buttery croissants, and lots of other things. Try the quiches. From the delicatessen try cheeses like camembert and brie, meats such as ham and salami. Baguettes are of course everywhere.

Normandy

Driving and parking in Normandy is easy.  There are lots of camper vans and motorhomes touring around, do you wont feel out of place. There are designated rest areas and car parks. D-Day beaches The …

Paris

Paris is an amazing city.  The many monuments, museums, food, drink and street life are sure to please even a traveller with a dislike of cities.  Driving is not for the faint hearted, but can be a good buzz once you get used to it. 

South of France

Do you have information about the South of France? Please contact us.

South West France

Moilets Plage Free camping at Moilets Plage North of the resort is a aire natural (free camping spot), on the D652 road. Hossegor Hossegor is a bright and lively surf town.  Home to several major surf competitions, the waves here are great. 
  1. What food can I take with me
    We are about to go on holiday in France in our camper van, what foods if any are we allowed to take with us, if you fly you cant take anything, is it any different, we would like to take bacon as its not freely available in France, and just other stuff such as milk and what we need for the first day or so till we get to a supermarket

    Reply

    1. As far as I know, you can
      As far as I know, you can take any food you like on the ferry or Channel Tunnel with a campervan. However, French supermarkets sell everything (almost) than British one’s sell. I love french food, and so love stocking up at french supermarkets. I wouldn’t take too much with you.

      Reply

  2. Buying a van in France
    Hi me and some friends are planning on touring around Europe in a van and are looking to buy a van in France.
    Does anybody know of some good web based (English speaking) sources specifically aimed at travellers like us for buying a vehicle (preferably in Calais or Paris.
    Thanks, Matt

    Reply

    1. Hi Matt
      Where are you coming

      Hi Matt

      Where are you coming from (NZ)?
      Buying and insuring a van from the UK is way easier for you than one from France Unless you speak good French then it might be an option.

      Reply

  3. Stopping for a sleep after Eurotunnel
    Hi folks,
    Was just wondering if anybody knows of anywhere i’d be able to stop for a kip after going through the Eurotunnel. I booked a late night crossing (as it was the cheapest option) and have to drive down to Folkstone from Dundee so will be totally knackered by the time i make it to France. Having never driven abroad before i’d like to have a kip as soon as possible after the tunnel so that i’m fresh as a daisy for the long drive down to Biarritz. It’s about 1250 miles so think it’s best to stop somewhere and do the trip over 2 days. 😀 Thanks, Brian.

    Reply

    1. There will almost certainly
      There will almost certainly be an Aire near to where to surface in France. Where in France do you leave the train?

      Reply

      1. Hi Darren. I get on at
        Hi Darren. I get on at Folkstone and get off at Calais. I’ll be driving down to Bergerac which is a fair bit down so will definately need a wee bit of shut eye first. Do you need to book a space at an Aire or do you just turn up and hope their is space?
        Thanks, Brian.

        Reply

        1. Aires are car parks only for
          Aires are car parks only for motorhomes and campervans. Some charge a few Euro’s, most are free.
          There is one in Calais. See these pages

          http://www.visitfrance.co.uk/picture.cfm?p=3308
          http://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/continental-touring/18909-safe-aire-near-calais.html
          http://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/continental-touring/3698-overnight-parking-calias.html

          Reply

  4. Try just north of Audierne.
    Try just north of Audierne. We followed the coast road beyond the town and followed signs for La Plage. We found this empty car park, 5 minutes from the beach. No restrictions, no payment!

    Reply

  5. free camping in Brittany
    Hi there, great site!

    Years ago I did a lot of free camping in France at picnic spots in the forests. There were lots of them, and we never got any hassle.

    Does anyone know if that’s still the case? I’m thinking of somewhere in the middle of Brittany

    Reply

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