Visiting Paris in December and January

Visiting Paris in December and January

Two years ago I spent New Year’s Eve with my friend Laurie in Paris. While some would prefer visiting in the Spring (aka “April in Paris”), winter in Paris can be wonderful. Here are some things to consider:

Outdoor cafes:

Paris in winter France

They have heaters, so you can still “people watch” and won’t get cold, especially if you order a Vin Chaud, which is hot, spiced wine.

 

 

 

Continue reading →

10 Tips For Renting A Home In France

10 Tips For Renting A Home In France

The first time I stayed in a house and not a hotel in France was in 1978 at a family friend’s place in Gordes, Provence. It gave me a taste of what it was like to really live as a local in a small town where one would walk to the local bakery each morning to pick up a warm baguette. Since then, I have truly appreciated the benefits of renting a home rather than just getting a hotel room. This post covers 10 tips for renting a home in France.

La Rouviere, France. renting a home
La Rouviere, France. Photo: J. Chung

Continue reading →

Jan’s 5 Favourite France Experiences (Out of 100)

5 Favourite France Experiences

This is the beginning of my Top 100 list of great France experiences. I was only going to do 10, but there were so many to choose from that I decided I would simply list 5 and will keep adding on to the list.  So here are 5 that every traveler to France should consider:

Experience Chateau de Tertres, France.
Chateau de Tertres, France. Photo: J. Chung

Experience #1: Touring many Chateaux In The Loire Valley

1. Touring Many Chateaux In The Loire Valley (and staying in a few). I keep going back to the Loire to see the chateaux. While there are so many, I do love returning to Chateau de Chenonceau, which spans the River Cher. It is the second most visited Chateau in France (after Versailles). I have also been fortunate enough to have stayed in:

Continue reading →

Women Travelling Alone In France

Women Travelling Alone In France

To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world.    

                                                    Freya Stark (1893-1993)

Not quite France.
Not quite France. Photo: J. Chung

The other day I remarked to someone that I had recently travelled to France alone. This was not the first time that someone (female) responded with astonishment that I could do this, that I had the guts to do this. A woman travelling alone? Yes! I sensed their fear had to do with one or many of the following: Continue reading →

Tips and Tricks To Save $ Flying To France

Saving money travelling to France

Although it’s only been a week since I have been home, I am now planning my next trip to France—in the Spring 2015. I hope to go for 2 months; however, let’s see how the costs pan out.
In my research, one of the best tips I can share has to do with using one’s frequent flyer points. I have a ton of points with Aeroplan, which is a Star Alliance member along with Lufthansa, LOT, Austrian, Brussels Airlines, Singapore Airlines, and many more. I collect my Aeroplan points primarily through Air Canada; however, the tax and fuel charges by Air Canada, when I am using my Aeroplan points is ridiculous. For a one-way, direct business flight from Toronto (YYZ) to Paris (CDG), the tax is $492.16 and 45000 Aeroplan miles. That’s just one way! Round trip would be $984.32 and 90000 miles. Economy is $584.3 and 60000 Aeroplan miles return. One might as well just pay for a flight. Certainly you are getting kind of a deal going business class; however, the taxes/fuel surcharges are insane!

So, what is one to do?
Continue reading →