We had already revealed the countries where people live the happiest in the world, here is now the ranking of the cities where it is good to live in France! Unveiled recently in the Journal du dimanche and established by the association "Villes et villages où il fait bon vivre", this study takes into account the quality of life, but also security or the shops and services available. From north to south, from Normandy to the PACA region, almost 35,000 communes took part in the survey. If you're thinking of moving or are simply curious to know if your city of heart has won over the respondents, here's the list of cities with more than 2,000 inhabitants!
20 - Nantes, the city of the dukes
Regularly classified among the communes where it is good to live, Nantes is a green city that is home to a hundred parks and gardens. The banks of the Loire River have been laid out for beautiful bike rides, and there is no shortage of museums, offering the city an undeniable cultural dynamism. Among these, the natural history museum installed in the former castle of the Dukes of Brittany, but also the museum dedicated to Jules Verne, the local child, are to be discovered
19 - Cherbourg-en-Cotentin, the sea on the horizon
No, it doesn't always rain in Normandy! And even if this were true, Cherbourg-en-Cotentin is a pleasant city where people live well, as the result of this study shows! If you love the sea, you'll be over the moon here: Cherbourg shines on the Cotentin peninsula, facing one of the largest artificial harbours in the world, a true masterpiece of engineering. We also like its downtown and its beaches
18 - Anglet, at the top of the wave
Anglet, the second largest town on the Basque Coast, is becoming more and more attractive for its quality of life. Here, the natural assets are numerous: the ocean and the pine forest as a backdrop make it possible to envisage numerous outdoor activities such as surfing, of course, golf or thalassotherapy. The "chambre d'amour", which owes its name to the cave facing the ocean where two lovers met in the 17th century, also attracts the curious. And you, will you find your own love room in Anglet?
17 - Rennes, the heart of Brittany
As a student city and cultural destination, Rennes has everything to convince potential undecideds. Its historic centre with its cobbled streets and half-timbered facades is of a certain charm. Rennes also has many green spaces such as the Parc du Thabor or the Parc des Gayeulles, which are very pleasant in fine weather. On the cultural side, its Museum of Fine Arts, which houses works by Botticelli and Rubens, is worth seeing. Finally, biting into a sausage cake will give you a good idea of what Ille-et-Vilaine has to offer!
16 - Brest, between land and sea
Welcome to Finistère! Close to the wild coasts of Brittany, where the land ends, Brest is increasingly attractive for its rather dynamic job market and its unique living environment. Here, once your working day is over, you can take advantage of the host of nautical activities available: paddle, sailing, kayaking... To learn more about marine life, its Océanopolis is a sure bet that will amaze young and old alike
15 - Biarritz, the elegant one
Between Brittany and the Basque Coast, the hearts of the respondents sway! Biarritz comes fifteenth in this ranking. If the summer crowds can make it less pleasant during August, it is good to live in this sports city where surfing is religion. But Biarritz is not just about riding the waves, the range of activities on offer to the inhabitants is wide: golf, thalassotherapy and of course walks to discover the beauties of the Basque Country
14 - Le Havre, a surprising city
Its disconcerting architecture, the result of a post-war reconstruction, leaves visitors astonished. This city of Seine-Maritime, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, has managed to preserve the imprint of the past while looking to the future, and that is why the inhabitants are satisfied with their living environment! In addition to its beach in the heart of the city, Le Havre is also a gateway to famous seaside resorts such as Étretat or Honfleur
13 - Saint-Etienne, creative city
Saint-Etienne has always been a city at the forefront of design. It was here, for example, that the first railway line (outside Great Britain) was installed or one of the first trams was put into operation. Today, the city has retained the dynamism that can be seen in the streets of its city centre, along its murals such as the "toothbrush that makes you laugh". Another positive point is the attractive housing prices
12 - Rodez, a quiet town
In Aveyron, the town of Rodez seduces by its tranquility and security. In the heart of a sublime natural setting, it is also the ideal place to shine throughout the Aveyron. Architectural riches (Notre-Dame cathedral, bishop's palace...) and small pedestrian streets form its pleasant historic centre. With its 23,949 inhabitants, Rodez is a city on a human scale that could well convince newcomers!
11 - Strasbourg, the belle of the East
Strasbourg, the seat of the European Parliament, is no longer presented as the capital of Christmas thanks to its market. The city has a 2,000-year-old history that can be discovered through its monuments. Emblem of Strasbourg, its monumental cathedral serves as a landmark for newcomers. A city on a human scale, Strasbourg's gastronomy and art of living are internationally renowned! We bet you'll make new acquaintances in one of these friendly taverns that serve good sauerkraut!
10 - Lorient, the uncontrollable Brittany
After Finistère and Ille-et-Vilaine, it is Morbihan which is popular with the city of Lorient! Here, we live well, thanks in particular to the sea which allows an undeniable economic dynamism: Lorient is the third French fishing port and the first commercial port of Brittany. But Lorient is more than just its port, it is a city where traditions live on with a strong Breton identity, as shown by its Inter-Celtic Festival. A real dive in Brittany!
9 - Caen, dynamic and historic
Dynamic and a student, it is not surprising that Caen is in ninth place in this ranking. Marked by its history and that of its region, Caen recalls its past in its unmissable Memorial, but also in its William the Conqueror's castle, one of the largest in Northern Europe. The proximity of the green Normandy countryside and the Landing Beaches are another undeniable asset
8 - Bordeaux, the attractive
As we know, Bordeaux is one of the most attractive cities in France! The job market is flourishing and the geographical location - on the Gironde estuary and a few kilometres from the Dune du Pilat or the Lège-Cap Ferret peninsula - is remarkable. However, this attractiveness has contributed to a significant increase in the price of housing, but Bordeaux is still a city where it's good to live!
7 - Avignon, capital of the Vaucluse
Would we live there happily as a pope? Avignon and its three hundred days of sunshine a year have convinced its inhabitants! Culturally dynamic, the city is, of course, known for its Palace of the Popes, its bridge celebrated in the famous nursery rhyme, but also for its annual festival of live theatre (the largest in the world, by the way!). Avignon is a permanent show!
6 - Nice, the sea at the end of the street
With its 10 km of coastline, Nice has enough to seduce all those who would like to change their lives. Dynamic in economic terms - it is notably home to Europe's leading technology park - Nice also offers many cultural and sporting activities throughout the year (and of course, its typical Carnival!). Its mild climate, thanks in particular to the county hills and the coastline, makes it a pleasant town in all seasons
5 - Le Mans, for more than 24 hours
Well known for its motorbike racing, Le Mans is also a city of art and history, with the Cité Plantagenêt, an old medieval town of twenty hectares, at its heart. A good place to stroll, at the foot of the cathedral, it is certainly the most evocative image of Le Mans. A green city, Le Mans also has many pleasant green spaces such as the Jardin des Plantes, the Ile aux Planches or the Arche de la Nature, only 10 minutes from the city centre
4 - Angers, a green city
The capital of Anjou just misses the podium! With the pleasant medieval atmosphere of its town centre, its constant attention to the environment and the rather reasonable price of its real estate, Angers charms more and more inhabitants. In the heart of the Loire Valley, in France's third largest wine-growing region, Angers has a lot to offer: a simple stroll along the banks of the Loire will certainly be enough to convince you!
3 - La Rochelle, a Charente life
On the Atlantic Ocean, La Rochelle is a quiet town in Charente-Maritime. It would seem that life is sweet and pleasant there since it comes in third place in this ranking! Sensitive to ecology, it is home to great biodiversity and several natural ecosystems: sandy coasts, cliffy coasts, coves, small capes... Four ports and three beaches have also been developed on its coastline!
2 - Bayonne, capital of the Basque Country
It is known for its festivals which animate it every summer, yet it seems that Bayonne is pleasant throughout the year since it comes in second place in this classification carried out by the association "Villes et villages où il fait bon vivre" (Cities and villages where life is good)! Its motto Nunquam Polluta, which means "never defiled", shows, even today, how well the city has preserved its heritage. What's more, its exceptional setting is no longer to be proven: in 15 minutes by bus, the ocean awaits you!
1 - Annecy, the elegant Savoyard girl
Is it the presence of Lake Geneva? Or its efficient public transport? Or its dynamic job market? Still, Annecy is the city of more than 2,000 inhabitants where it is the "best place to live" in France according to this survey! Chic and elegant, its medieval centre is a jewel. Nicknamed the "Venice of the Alps" for its picturesque setting, the town is watered by the Thiou River and surrounded by the Bornes and Bauges massifs. A real postcard!