The cold has indeed arrived with its share of snow, hail and icy rain. But this bad weather does not stop travellers! On the contrary, some places are even more beautiful when you discover them in winter. For that, there is no need to travel for miles: France and its varied landscapes, from the mountains to the coastline and the vast plains, contain treasures. The mythical Alps and Pyrenees will attract skiers, while the Côte d'Azur will continue to charm with its Mediterranean climate. But why not get off the beaten track and discover new places? Did you know, for example, that there are ski resorts in Corsica or that the heritage of the city of Beauvais is one of the most important in the country? Here are our 10 favorite destinations for a winter weekend in France
The island of Porquerolles, the Mediterranean in winter
The island of Porquerolles is the largest of the islands of Hyères, an archipelago located off the coast of the city of the same name. To enjoy all the beauty of its Mediterranean landscapes, the off-season is ideal, especially in winter. The sun always present deposits its soft rays on the rugged coasts of the south and the beaches of the north which, very popular in summer, offer a unique view of Porquerolles, much less touristic in winter. A winter weekend with a summer feel!
The piton de la Fournaise, summer or winter?
We leave the winter of the metropolis to join the summer! Reunion Island is ideal for a trip between November and April, since the seasons are reversed compared to the northern hemisphere: you will therefore enjoy another summer! Reunion Island owes its nickname "intense island" to its ever-active volcano: the peak of the Fournaise, one of its most famous. The spectacle of its eruptions is always grandiose, as are the colours of this magical place at sunset or sunrise!
The regional natural park of Les Ballons des Vosges, a green holiday
In a territory of 3,000 km2 in the heart of the Grand Est region, the Ballons des Vosges regional nature park is home to remarkable biodiversity. In winter, you can enjoy the many activities on offer: the park has no fewer than 20 winter sports resorts where you can practice downhill and cross-country skiing, surfing, sledging or even snowshoeing. Often forgotten in favour of the Alps or the Pyrenees, the Vosges mountains are nevertheless a very beautiful winter destination!
The Spanish Bridge, a trip to the Pyrenees
Not far from the village of Cauterets, the Spanish bridge owes its name to the mule track leading to Spain that was there. It is certainly one of the most beautiful natural sites in Occitania. Also known as "Little Canada", the Pont d'Espagne is famous for its waterfall on the Gaube river and its eternal snow-capped peaks like the Vignemale, which rises to an altitude of 3,298 m. Its gentle slopes make it easy to practice snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in winter
Asco, skiing in Corsica
By often associating Corsica with its rugged coastline where beaches and sumptuous coves follow one another, one would almost forget that it is above all a mountainous island that one travels through thanks to these mythical hiking trails like the GR 20 ! During the winter, it is even possible to ski in Corsica, especially in the resort of Asco. This village in Haute-Corse, not far from the mountains, offers a recently expanded ski area that allows you to enjoy the pleasures of snow to the full
Beauvais, the little-known
Beauvais-Tillé airport receives millions of passengers every year, but how many take the time to visit the surrounding area? However, the capital of the Oise is worth a visit, if only for its splendid 13th century cathedral of Saint-Pierre. It houses the highest Gothic heart in the world - it stands at 48.50 m! - but also one of the greatest organs in France. We will also visit the MUDO, the Oise Museum, especially for the building in which it is located: a splendid episcopal palace. Before flying to sunnier regions, Beauvais is a choice stopover!
Baume-les-Messieurs, Burgundian beauty
Baume-les-Messieurs is located in the heart of a remote part of the Jura. This typical element of the Jura landscape is a long valley that penetrates into a limestone plateau. Due to its outstanding geographical location, Baume-les-Messieurs ranks among the most beautiful villages in France. At the end of its remote location, we find the Baume-les-Messieurs waterfall, which comes from the underground river, the Dard. In winter, the spectacle is impressive because the frost creates impressive ice sculptures!
The caves of Sare, between traditions and legends
The Sare caves are the third most visited site in the Basque Country. Testimonies of an occupation dating back to prehistoric times have been found there! The guided tour sounds and lights allows you to learn more about the geology and origins of the Basque people and their language. Not far from the caves, we also visit the megalithic park where there is a reconstruction of the monuments present on the site in 2800 BC, as well as the museum dealing with the evolution of man. A prehistoric dive for young and old!
Rocamadour, sacred city
On the cliffside, in the Dordogne valley, Rocamadour is a breathtaking site overlooking the Alzou valley. Its winding alleys form a charming city centre where it is pleasant to stroll even in winter. Rocamadour is located on the road to Santiago de Compostela, where many pilgrims come to climb the 216 steps that lead to the esplanade of sanctuaries. This is where you can find the Basilica of Saint-Sauveur and the crypt of Saint-Amadour, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, but also six other chapels, including the chapel of Notre-Dame, known for its Black Madonna
The Aiguille du Midi, a unique site
It is the essential site of Mont-Blanc. The summit terrace of the Aiguille du Midi can be reached in less than 20 minutes by cable car from Chamonix. The ascent, with 2,700 m of altitude difference, is surprising! It leads to a sublime panorama of the Swiss and Italian glaciers and slopes of the Mont-Blanc massif. At the top, we also find 3842, one of the highest perched restaurants in Europe: the ideal place to warm up with local specialities!