The road trip is a way of travelling which allows you to discover the different places of a region, a country, or even several countries! You can travel the roads by car, van, camper van or even motorbike. In all cases, the objective is not to settle in one place, but to discover a multitude of cities, villages, monuments and landscapes. In France, the diversity of landscapes makes it an incredible country for a multi-faceted road trip. In no time at all, you can go from a big city to a countryside full of small villages, or from the mountains to the sea. So for those who wish to discover or rediscover the great wealth of the historical and landscape heritage of France, here are 10 of the best road trips to do in France
1- The Great Alps Route
This itinerary is to be preferred by the lovers of the mountain of course. The ideal is to do it by motorcycle or car. Over hundreds of kilometers, we cross no less than three national parks and 17 passes. On the program of this vertiginous journey, incredible crests and moments spent at the edge of sumptuous mountain lakes with turquoise waters. Fans of beautiful panoramas will have plenty of time to immortalize breathtaking landscapes! From the shores of Lake Geneva, you will reach passes such as the Aravis pass, and then during the journey, you will also end up along the shores of the Mediterranean. As far as national parks are concerned, let's mention the Mercantour, where you can take the time to stop and walk along winding paths and wander through typical villages
2- The Basque coast
Between the sea and the mountains, the Basque coast never ceases to surprise road trip enthusiasts. The best place to start is Bayonne, after having taken the time to spend some time in the city, full of charm and with a rich heritage. Then head for the beautiful city of Biarritz to stroll around its fishermen's port, swim on the Grande Plage and admire the sunsets at the Rocher de la Vierge. Bidart and Guéthary are other charming towns with typical houses, where you can stop off in the restaurants to taste the rich gastronomy, cheeses and other delicatessen products. Then comes Saint-Jean-de-Luz, where you can enjoy discovering the monuments as much as strolling along the Pointe-Sainte-Barbe and observing the agitation of the sea on the cliffs. A road trip can end with Irún in Spain, for the pleasure of changing country and discovering a city with a rich past
3- The castles of the Loire Valley
This is a perfect road trip for lovers of history, beautiful monuments, wines and ancestral cities. Crossing the Centre-Val de Loire region and continuing with the Pays de la Loire, the road reveals superb castles, some medieval, others Renaissance. Chambord, Amboise, Chenonceau, Saumur or Angers reveal buildings that tell the story of their walls and the great historical figures who have passed through them. On the road that leads to the foot of these jewels, you will also discover beautiful wine-growing landscapes, those of the Sancerrois, Chinon andAnjou regions. So many places where you can enjoy tastings at the producers
4- From the Opal Coast to the Bay of the Somme
The seascapes of northern France are magnificent and deserve a road trip to enjoy the fresh air and discover many charming towns. On the Côte d'Opale, the Grand Site des Deux Caps, with the Cap Blanc Nez and the Cap Gris Nez, offers breathtakingly beautiful panoramas of greenery and sea! We also like to stop in the charming villages likeAudresselles, with its beautiful fishermen's houses, or Wimereux, splendid with its Belle Époque villas. You should also not miss Le Touquet and the castle ofHardelot. A road trip on the Opal Coast should be combined with a stopover in the Baie de Somme. The medical city of Saint-Valéry-sur-Somme, the beautiful beaches of the Crotoy resort and the seals basking on the seashore also leave incredible memories.
5- The Landes road
The Landes department is surprising and a must for a road trip in the summer. Between the pine forests, the dunes, the beaches and the charming villages always very animated in summer, there is enough to spend unforgettable moments. The trip can start with a trip to the Huchet stream, the little Landes Amazon. This is a river that connects the Léon lake to the Atlantic Ocean, and travelling on it by boat really gives you the feeling of being far away, in the heart of a wild and preserved nature. A trip also inevitably passes through Hossegor, a town with a Basque-Landesque style. This is where you can take the time to swim and surf, an essential water sport in the area! The Landes also offers the natural beauty of the Marais d'Or and the forests to be explored by bike. In short, there's never a dull moment!
6- The Napoleon Route
The Route Napoléon is first and foremost a historical itinerary, since it is the road that the Emperor took on his return from Elba, determined to regain power. From Golfe-Juan to Grenoble, the road trip takes visitors to the beautiful towns on the Mediterranean coast, such as the prestigious Cannes. Then, as you go inland and cross the hilly landscapes, you stop in towns steeped in history and with architecture so emblematic of the South of France: Grasse, Castellane and Sisteron. In the heart of nature, you will ride through the mineral landscapes of the Taulannes and Chabrières clues, before following the Durance valley by mountain bike. Then the trip can end in Grenoble, where you can enjoy its heritage, its museums, but also its beautiful surrounding nature
7- The Breton coast
Brittany offers varied and beautiful seascapes. They are perfect for a road trip that will blow your mind. From the beautiful historic city of Saint-Malo, you can then head to Erquy to enjoy its beautiful beaches suitable for swimming. Then comes the Pink Granite Coast and its rocks with incredible shapes and colors. Later, the cliffs and the rough sea of Finistère offer endless panoramic walks. Heading south, the Gulf of Morbihan awaits travellers for a stopover that combines escapades on wild islands and nautical activities. A road trip on the Breton coast is also an opportunity to stop in beautiful cities of character, to admire the architecture and eat seafood or a crêpe over a glass of cider. Let's mention Dinan, Perros-Guirec or Locronan
8- The Auvergne volcanoes
A road trip in Auvergne is an excellent opportunity to get closer to nature. In the morning, the brown that spreads over the volcanoes almost gives the feeling of waking up in the heart of Scottish landscapes. The route includes stops for hiking and biking among the volcanoes. The panoramas are then exceptional, especially when you see the highest peak of the Massif Central and the Monts Dore: the puy de Sancy. On sunny days, there are also lakes that await bathers and those who like to picnic. The Chambon and Aidant lakes are great places to spend a nice day. And then there are the beautiful villages of the Puy-de-Dôme, Saint-Floret, Usson or Besse, with their beautiful stones and where you can linger at a good table to taste some good local specialities, including cheeses.
9- The Alsace Wine Route
Wine tourism is very popular and can be part of a road trip, as long as you are reasonable of course! In Alsace, the Wine Route allows you to cross green vineyards and meet producers who are always happy to share their know-how and let you taste their wines. But this road trip is also the opportunity to stop and visit some superb heritage sites, such as the convent of Mont Saint-Odile and the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle. Alsace is also a region rich in beautiful villages. Bergheim, Riquewhir and Kaysersberg are just some of the towns to marvel at the colourful, timber-framed houses and bucolic atmosphere
10- Vendée and Charente Islands
Head to the West of France for a road trip in harmony with the Atlantic Ocean. From the Vendée, the coastline reveals Noirmoutier, a real gem with its wild beaches, its small towns with white houses and blue shutters, and its cycle tracks which allow you to discover the island from one end to the other. Further down, a stop in Les Sables-d'Olonne is an opportunity to spend time in a lively town, where the Penotte Island district is a real open-air museum, with its walls covered with frescoes made of shells. Once in Charente-Maritime, travellers can embark on a tour of the islands. The island of Ré can be explored by bike, through the chic villages. The island of Oléron is bright, with its wide beaches where you can sunbathe. You have to take the boat to reach the island of Aix, but it is certainly the most authentic. Finally, you can reach Ile Madame on foot at low tide, and discover a wild environment, suitable for long walks in contact with the fauna and flora