The 20 Best hidden gems in France
Here is your selection of the best hidden treasures of France, the most beautiful secret places of France.
Book your flights, your accommodation and your tours and activities in France at the best price and discover the Best Secret Travel Destinations in France such as the cities of Saint Cirq Lapopie or Eze.
Need more inspiration? Discover the Best Places to Visit in France, Best Things to do in France, Most Beautiful Beaches in France, Best Castles in France but also the Best Christmas Markets in France and Best Ski Resorts in France.
A 15-minute drive from Colmar and only a 1hour drive from Strasbourg, Eguisheim is one of of your Best Secret Places in France.
With its colourful facades, typical Alsatian houses and stork nests, Eguisheim is a destination straight out of a fairy tale.
Where to stay: "Hotel Restaurant L'Auberge Alsacienne" with modern rooms and a traditional restaurant.
2. Monet's Garden
Giverny - Normandy
Once in a while, the hand of man intervenes to create a magnificent landscape and sublime gardens that is now seen as one of the most beautiful Secret Places in France.
Without a penny in his pocket, the painter Claude Monet had to leave Paris and moved in as a single tenant in this house located in Normandy.
The property underwent major landscaping work including the creation of a pond and the building of three greenhouses. Monet finally acquired the house after 7 years of tenancy. These gardens were to inspire him with his most famous paintings including "Les Nymphéas".
Come relax in this soothing and inspiring place just 1 hour’s drive from Paris and book your flights and accommodation at the best price and your tours and activities in France such as a "Half-day trip to Giverny from Paris" and disccover one of the Best Hidden Gems in France.
How to get there: Book your flights to Paris (1h by car).
Where to stay: "Le Jardin des Plumes" located in Giverny. Monet's house and gardens are only 500 m from the Hotel.
Close to the border with Italy, Menton is one of the most colourful destinations in France and one of the Best Secret Travel Destinations in France.
Located just a 50 minutes’ drive from Nice Airport, Menton is a perfect destination for a multi-day stay or a day trip.
Book your flights but also your accommodation at the best price as well as your tours and activities in the French Riviera such as the discovery of the city of Grasse and the possibility of making your own perfume at a Perfume Factory.
How to get there: Book your flights to Nice Airport (50 min by car).
Where to stay: "Best Western Plus Hotel Prince de Galles" located in the seaside town of Menton.
Located an hour away by car from Saint-Brieuc airport and Rennes airport, Cancale is one of the Best Hidden Gems in France.
This small town of 5 000 inhabitants is visited every year by travellers from all over the world who come to taste its wild oysters, enjoy its turquoise blue waters and its magnificent beaches.
Cancale is only a 50 minutes’ drive from le Mont Saint-Michel.
Where to stay: "La Mere Champlain" located in the heart of Cancale.
Riquewihr is one of the most beautiful villages in Alsace and one of the best off-the-beaten-track places in France.
The tourist success of this small village is largely due to its intact architectural heritage spared by the two world wars.
How to get there: Book your flights to Strasbourg or Basel (1h by car), your accommodation at the best price and your tours and activities in Alsace, such as a "full-day wine tour & tastings from Strasbourg".
Where to stay: "Maison Rebleuthof" a luxury apartment in the heart of Riquewihr's Old Town.
6. Estérel Massif
Golden Island - Var
This imposing volcanic mountain massif is one of the most incredible natural wonders in France and one of the Best Secret Places to Visit in France.
The Massif de l'Esterel is located in the Var, a department known for the beauty of its landscapes and its beaches which have been elected as being among the best beaches in France.
The best way to enjoy these landscapes is to hike. You may see deer, wild boar or turtles and be overwhelmed by the scents of thyme, rosemary, lavender and mimosa.
Where to stay: "Tiara Miramar Beach Hotel & Spa". This design hotel features a free onsite spa.
This is one of the best hidden gems in France but also one of the most beautiful French villages.
The village of Eze is located a few minutes from the very famous city of Nice and therefore only a 40 minutes’ drive from Nice airport.
Eze is a 13th century village hung on a rocky peak facing the Mediterranean. We come here for the beauty of the landscapes and for the authentic character of this small village and its medieval houses.
Where to stay: "Eze Hermitage Hotel" offering panoramic views of the area and a beautiful swimming pool.
8. L'ile Louet
Carantec - Morlaix - Brittany
This magnificent and tiny island is one of the Best Secret Places to Visit in France. It is located in Carantec, Morlaix bay, in Brittany.
The name of this island is not its first owner’s, Charles Cornic, but his best friend’s, Monsieur Louët.
It is now possible to stay overnight on this tiny island managed by the Carantec tourist office, but the place is often fully booked; we advise you to keep that in mind and book in advance.
How to get there: Book your flights to Brest-Bretagne Airport ( 40 min by car).
Where to stay: "Hôtel de Carantec" facing the beachfront.
Colmar is not really a secret destination, nor is it unknown but it is full of hidden gems which you will love.
Over the years this beautiful city has become one of the most visited destinations in France. It is no coincidence that travellers from all over the world book their holidays in Colmar. They also voted the city "Best Destination for Spring".
We fell in love with Colmar and have published a small travel guide on the best things to do & see in Colmar.
How to get there: Book your flights to Basel or Strasbourg (1h by car) and travel by train or by car to discover Colmar.
Where to stay: "Hotel Le Colombier Suites".
10. La Roque Gageac
Located in the Dordogne region, one of the most beautiful regions of France, La Roque Gageac is one of the best off-the-beaten-track destinations in France.
Enjoy your stay in the region to explore the most beautiful places of the Dordogne Valley such as the sacred city of Rocamadour, the village of Collonges-la-Rouge and many others.
Where to stay: We advise you to book in the guest house "Maison d'hôtes Anne Fouquet".
11. Menenham Village
Kerlouan - Brittany
This is not really a village but rather a hamlet. Meneham located in Finistere in Brittany is one of the Best Secret Places to Visit in France. It is known for the house between two rocks built to monitor the coast.
The entire hamlet of Menham was renovated about ten years ago and today it welcomes travellers wishing to discover how life was at the seaside in the 18th century.
If you are not passionate about history this is not a problem, you will be seduced by the beauty of the landscapes, the turquoise waters of the mer d’iroise and the wilderness of this Brittany coast.
Where to stay: We recommend the hotel "Relais du Silence Hotel de la Mer", an ecological hotel located on the seafront.
One of the most beautiful villages in France is located just 1h30 from Toulon airport in the Lot department.
Saint-Cirq-Lapopie is a small medieval village of 200 inhabitants. The village has also inspired artists like André Breton who lived there.
Explore in his footsteps the narrow streets and medieval houses of one of the best hidden gems in France.
Where to stay: Book at the "Charme et jardin cœur St Cirq" highly rated for its location in the heart of Saint-Cirq Lapopie.
13. Dune du Pilat
Arcachon - Occitanie
With a height of 106 m and a length of 600 m, the Pilat Dune is the highest dune in Europe and one of the Best Hidden Gems in France.
The largest dune in the world is still 5 times larger but the beauty of the Dune of Pilat is truly awesome. Size aside, its most impressive feature is its presence, right there amidst a beautiful forest of pine trees.
Go down at the foot of the dune and you will arrive on the basin of Arcachon, world famous for its oysters.
A few steps from the dune you can eat at the restaurant "La Coorniche" renovated by the French designer Philippe Starck. You can also book your room at the best price at the 5-star hotel "La Coorniche".
How to get there: Book your flights to Bordeaux (50 min by car).
Where to stay: "La Coorniche" renovated by the French designer Philippe Starck.
The Dordogne valley is a favourite destinations for travellers exploring France. You will fall in love with the villages of Rocamadour, Carennac, Colonges-la-Rouge and Meyronne, ranked among the Best Secret Places in France.
During your stay you will taste the best of French gastronomy and exceptional wines.
There is also food for the spirit as the Dordogne Valley is rich in exceptional monuments, medieval castles and its famous half-timbered houses.
Where to stay: The guest house "Château de Maraval" is perfect for an unforgettable stay in this region of France.
You will find the small village of Nonza in the South of Corsica. Located only 1hour drive from Bastia airport, Nonza is considered one of the most beautiful villages in France.
Come and enjoy the Mediterranean climate and discover one of the best hidden gems in France.
Below the village you can enjoy the beach of Nonza. There is always room for sunbathing since Nonza has only 73 inhabitants.
Where to stay: If you want to stay in Nonza we advise you to book at the "Hotel de la Corniche" with a clear view of the valley and the sea.
Bonifacio is certainly one of the most beautiful secret destinations in France. The island of beauty, the other name for Corsica, is itself one of the most beautiful islands in Europe.
How to get there: Book your flights for the "Figari-South Corsica" airport (30 min by car) located in the south of Corsica and discover Bonifacio but also the sublime islands of Lavezzi.
Where to stay: "Solemare" offers views of the old port and the Citadel and you can enjoy its heated swimming pool and air-conditioned rooms.
Gordes - Luberon
The Notre-Dame de Sénanque abbey is located in the town of Gordes, awarded as one of the most beautiful villages in France.
You will be able to visit the two places, the Abbey Notre-Dame de Sénanque and the village of Gordes and its famous ‘gories’ on the same day.
Come visit this place in spring and early summer when lavender is in bloom!
How to get there: Book your flights to Avignon (30 min by car) or Marseille (50min)
Only a few km from the Spanish border, Collioure is one of the best hidden gems in France.
Collioure is a peaceful destination where the 3,000 inhabitants among them many artists, live in harmony with nature and the sea.
Where to stay "Hotel Madeloc" located 10 minutes’ walk from the seaside.
Cotes d'Armor - Brittany
Plougrescant is only a 50 minutes’ drive from Saint-Brieuc airport. Located on the Côte de Granit Rose in the Côtes-d'Armor, Plougrescant is a coastal town ranked among the best hidden gems of France.
This peninsula is known for this house wedged between two rocks but you can also see a house on a tiny island.
How to get there: Book your flights to Saint-Brieuc Airport (50 min by car).
Where to stay: Located a few minutes from Plougrescant, stay at "Hotel des Rochers.
20. Le Puy en Velay
Auvergne Rhône-Alpes - France
The Saint-Michel rock on which culminates the church of Puy en Velay is one of the symbols of Puy En Velay, one of the best hidden gems in France.
A land of spirituality, Puy-en-Velay attracts pilgrims from all over the world but also lovers of lace, an ancestral know-how still mastered by a few lacemakers who create refined and 100% artisanal lace.
Passionate about history? Do not miss the Renaissance celebrations of the King of the Bird which take place every year in mid-September.
How to get there: Book your flights to Lyon Airport (2h by car).
Where to stay: "The House of Lake Fugeres". Situated in the best rated area in Le Puy en Velay.
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