pinterest verify Globerovers Travel Photography: F R A N C E

F R A N C E


  • GlobeRovers Rating: 7 / 10
  • Buzz Line: "Oh France is so lovely and Paris so romantic! What a cliché!"
  • Eagle Eye: Have to admit it is a lovely country with some very interesting architecture, food & wine, culture, landscapes, and even a few good people!
  • Hot Spots: Paris, the Mediterranean (French Riviera), the wine growing areas, mountains, and more!
  • The Low-down: I guess follow the crowds and enjoy France.


Sainte Chapelle on Île de la Cité, Paris


Sainte Chapelle on Île de la Cité, Paris, FRANCE


Louvre Pyramid (Pyramide du Louvre), Louvre Museum (Musée du Louvre), Paris


Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris


Arc de Triomphe, Paris


Saint-Germain of Auxerrois Church near Louvre Museum, Paris

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

The treasury. Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

The treasury. Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel near the Louvre Museum (Musée du Louvre), Paris

Louvre Pyramid (Pyramide du Louvre), Louvre Museum (Musée du Louvre), Paris

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These photographs are on film and covers Paris and the south of France.

Aix-en-Provence
Aix (pronounced "X") is a tourist and student mecca and only a 30 minute train ride from Marseilles.The University of Aix-Merseilles has a student population of about 30,000. Certainly worth a visit to see the streets, cafés, and the tens fountains.


Provencial delights in Aix-en-Provence



Cathédrale St-Sauveur in Aix-en-Provence




Cours Mirabeau with several fountains and tens of cafés for people watching, Aix-en-Provence



Arles
Arles is 36km south west of Avignon and less than 30 minutes by train. After Julius Caesar conquered the area in 49 B.C. Arles became the provincial centred and a 20,000 seat Roman amphitheatre was built to entertain the populous of plebs and their masters. Les Arènes was built to host sporting contests, chariot races, and the wildly popular bloody spectacles so beloved by the Roman public. Wild animals were thrown in with other animals or gladiators (usually slaves or criminals) who fought each other until most were killed. Even surviving criminals got their throats slashed if they survived the animals or other gladiators. Other highlights include the Romanesque churches, charming streets and small provencial restaurants. It also here where Van Gogh spent his last days painting the sunflowers and streets of Arles (for his boyfriend's bedroom) before he cut off his own ear, and later committed suicide.


Les Arènes Amphitheatre, Arles


Les Arènes Amphitheatre, Arles



View of Arles from Les Arènes Amphitheatre



Streets of Arles



Lunch time in Arles


The famous cafe painted by Van Gogh near Place du Forum


Avignon

Avignon is a wonderful charming town, over-run by tourists during the summer. Not so small anymore (pop. 88,000) if offers so much to see. Most of the town is ancient, and offers the spectacular Palais des Papes (some to the Popes before Rome), great art stores, old buildings, wonder little restaurants, and of course a huge variety of Côtes du Rhône wines. Compared with wine prices in Hong Kong (my hometown), the French wines are great bargains. I made sure to drink 3 bottles a day while traveling through the area. I found Provence food and wines are totally irresistible!! The historic village of Avignon is surrounded by a 4.3km wall, built during 1359 and 1370. Highlight: Palais des Papes, a huge Gothic palace, built in the 14th century as a fortified palace for the pontif. Walking through this huge place you can only imagine what life would have been like hundreds of years ago. Imagine this: The feast to celebrate Clement VI's coronation in 1342 comprised 4,428 chickens, 50,000 sweet tarts, 39,980 eggs, and 95,000 loaves of bread, among other numerous delights.


Avignon street with old water mill at the right



Avignon street



Palais des Papes, Avignon



Courtyard at Palais des Papes, Avignon


Cathedral next to Palais des Papes



Avignon street


Côte d' Azur area
The Southern and Central Côte d' Azur includes Cannes (the city of the annual International Film Festival, Grasse (the purfume village), St. Raphael, St. Tropez and the port city of Marseilles. Of all the above, Grasse and St. Tropez were the nicest, followed by the pretentious Cannes. Marseilles is more like Northern Africa / Arab world than France and crime seems to me to be in abundance.

Grasse
Just 17km north of Cannes lies Grasse, the home of French perfume. The smell in the air varies from wild aromatic scents to the smell of the sea breeze blowing in from the south


Village of Grasse


Streets of Grasse


Streets of Grasse


Cannes
In Cannes, more so than anywhere else along the Côte d' Azur, lots of money in your pocket is essential to survive the day. Its worth spending a day in Cannes but not worth blowing your money on accommodation. Cannes is small enough to cover on foot in 4 to 6 hours, and don't forget to have dinner in the old town, towards the southern end of the main beach. Large parts of the beach are "private" and only for paying guests. Please don't support this evil! Check out the marina and have a laugh at the rich bastards showing off their toys. Its total show biz with the rich sitting in their oceanliner-sized yachts while the wanna-bees parade by and some obviously drooling. For me, I thought they were monkeys in their cages and wish they could come down to earth and have a life! Go and check, but don't bother to throw them any of your nuts -- they won't appreciate the smaller things in life.


Cannes beach



Cannes restaurants



Cannes restaurants


St-Tropez
With a population of less than 6,000, St-Tropez is small and still fairly exclusive. St-Tropez is not on the train route so unless you have a car, you need to change to a bus from either Fréjus or St-Raphael. Bus ride along the scenic coastline and small towns takes just over an hour. Check out the old town!


Artists at work along the marina in St. Tropez



St. Tropez street


Marseilles + St. Raphael
I spent about 2 hours in Marseilles and what I saw was dirty, lots of Africans and Arabs just hanging around like vultures which creates an almost scary atmosphere. This is not the France you came to see, so my recommendation is don't waste your time in Marseilles St-Raphael has some nice beaches but probably not worth spending much time around this town either. I just drove through by bus.


Marseilles Marina. You wish you had your yacht here!


Èze
Èze, with a population of less than 3,000 souls, is a picturesque village perched on a rocky peak. The climb uphill towards Èze, from Èze-sur-Mer is a tough 30-45 minutes exercise, certainly worth it!


The view from Èze

The view from Èze


Village of Èze


Nice and Antibes
Nize [Neeze] is really not so nice anymore. It's nice days may be something of the past, as it is over run with tourists and maybe just another city by the sea. Anyhow, a great place to be based for day trips in all directions. Antibes is quite quaint. Did not spend much time there, but the dinner was fabulous!!


In the sun of Antibes



Near Nice



Seafood in Antibes


Menton
Menton is a short, scenic train trip to the north of Monaco, and is only about 10 minutes drive south of the Italian border. Its reputed to be the warmest spot on the Côte d' Azur. Menton, known for its lemons, also has nice cobble stone beaches, great historical buildings, romantic streets with street cafes, and for me the best was their ice creams parlours!!


Menton, near the Italian border, not far from Monaco


Menton beach


Paris


The ORIGINAL & REAL Mona Lisa, Louvre Museum, Paris


Seine River, Paris


Louvre Museum, Paris