The Best Cities In France For The First Time Visitor

Encompassing the cities from medieval era, villages engulfed by the alpines and the Mediterranean beaches, are what the cities in France are about. Famed for its fashion fiesta, classical art museums including the Louvre and the wonder of the world – the Eiffel Tower is the city of Paris.

paris - cities in france

The country’s rich history is attested by the ancient cave drawings, Lyon’s Roman theater and the Palace of Versailles. The French cuisine is renowned for its sophisticated and delectable dishes served with wine.

Here in this post I will outline six of the most visited cities in France.

Paris

A major city and a prime attraction for the tourists is the capital city of France – Paris. It is one of the cities in France which is a hub for its culture, art, gastronomy and the world famous fashion trends. Its 19th-century cityscape is crisscrossed by wide boulevards and the River Seine.

Apart from the top landmarks including the Eiffel Tower and the 12th-century, Gothic Notre-Dame cathedral, the city is known to have much more. Some of the top sights include the Louvre, Arc de Triomphe, a domed church called Sacre-Coeur and everyone’s favorite the Disneyland Park.

Nice

Sitting on the pebbly shores of the Baie des Anges is the city of Nice. The city used to be a retreat for 19th-century European elite. Since then it has attracted a great number of artists.

Honored is the collection of paintings by former resident Henri Matisse at Musee Matisse. Musee Marc Chagall features some of its namesake’s major religious works. Some places that top the tourist’s list are Chateau Grimaldi, Russian Orthodox Cathedral and the Parc Phoenix.

Lyon

No wonder you will find cinematic touch to the Lyon city for it’s the birthplace of cinema. This historical city is known for its cultural and foodie delights. The Roman Amphitheater des Trois Gaules and the medieval Renaissance architecture in Vieux (Old) Lyon are marks on the historical map.

Connecting Vieux Lyon and La Croix-Rousse hill is Traboules, a covered passageway. Some of the top sights in the city include the octagonal Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourviere, a tree lined Public Square, the treasury museum at Lyon cathedral and the expansive Lyon Zoo.

Bordeaux

The port city of Bordeaux rising by the Garonne River in south-western France is a hub of the wine-growing fields. Also famed are the city’s Gothic Cathedrale Saint-Andre, century old mansions and commendable art museums such as the Musee des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux.

Centered on the Three Graces fountain is the grand Place de la Bourse, overlooking the Miroir d’Eau reflecting pool. A day tour of the city is incomplete without Pont de Pierre- a stone arch bridge and. Puerta de Cailhau- a castle like arch and once the entry point of the city. Also not to miss is the Tour Pey Berland- a 15th century bell tower atop which give you a picturesque view of the city.

Lille

Bordering with Belgium is the city of Lille in northern France. Once an important merchant center of French Flanders, and many Flemish influences remain, today is a cultural hub and bustling University City. Characterized by the 17th-century brick houses, cobbled streets and the large central square is the historic center named Vieux Lille.

Annecy

Set on the convergence of Lake Annecy and the Thiou River is this little Alpine town of Annecy. The cobbled streets, pastoral houses and winding canal of Vieille Ville (old town) awaits the laid back travelers to rejuvenate.

Overlooking the city is the medieval Chateau d’Annecy which was once home to the Counts of Geneva. Today it is a museum housing a natural history exhibit along with some regional artifacts such as Alpine furniture and religious art.

All in all France has left its imprint in a gamut of fields ranging from food to architecture. Whoever visits this once falls in love with its impeccable wines, astonishing museums and a welcoming environment.

Mohit Agarwal

Mohit Agarwal is a civil engineer by profession & started travel blogging to share his experiences while traveling to new places without any planned itinerary, as it adds up to more adventure & exploring more about the city. He also loves photography to capture natural views with no or minimal filters.

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