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  • 1 Maison Carrée Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    Place de la Maison-Carrée

    This is as pure and well-preserved a Roman temple as may be found anywhere. Erected in the reign of Augustus, it was dedicated to the "princes of youth", the emperor's grandsons. It exudes a fragile charm, due to the harmony of its proporti..

  • 2 Grotte des Demoiselles Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    St-Bauzille-de-Putois

    This crevice in the plateau of Thaurac dominates the Hérault Valley. Right from the entrance, visitors are struck by the size and number of the concretions. Narrow corridors lead to a sort of platform overlooking the central part of the cave, an imme..

  • 3 Grotte de Clamouse Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Route de St-Guilhem-le-Désert

    Discovered in 1945 when an exceptional summer drought enabled explorers to get past the source of the Clamouse, this cave is renowned for its number and variety of delicate white crystalline formations. It has two types of concretions: classical stal..

  • Since 1890, this pretty name has been used to refer to the stretch of coast between the bays of Mont-St-Michel (St Michael's Mount) and St-Brieuc. You can admire wonderful panoramic views at Pointe du Grouin and Cap Fréhel, the coast's most grandiose..

  • 5 Château de Valençay Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    2 rue de Blois

    Built around 1540 in the Renaissance style and inspired by Chambord, Valençay is not to be outdone by the nearby châteaux of the Loire Valley. Note the first touches of the Classical style: superposed pilasters and domes instead of pepperpot roofs. T..

  • 6 White Lake Peak Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    At an altitude of 3,327 m, the Pic du lac Blanc offers a fine view of Les Deux-Alpes, Lake Lauvitel, Mount Ventoux, L'Alpe-d'Huez, Taillefer, Belledonne and Chartreuse. On the main terrace, a wider panorama enables you to see the Pic Bayle, Grande Ca..

  • 7 L'Oisans Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Demoted by Mont-Blanc when Savoie was annexed to France, the Oisans range is the second highest massif in France, with some parts reaching over 4 000m. Wilder and more unspoilt than its more famous rival, it nonetheless attracts nature-lovers and cli..

  • 8 Vallée de la Romanche Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    The road linking Bourg-d'Oisan and the Col du Lautaret cuts through the wild gorges of the Infernet to touch the bottom of the former glacial valley of the River Romanche. It runs alongside the impressive Chambon Dam and skirts the austere Combe de M..

  • 9 Vallée du Vénéon Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Heading out of Le Bourg-d'Oisans towards La Bérarde, the road enters the extensive glacial Le Vénéon valley beyond Les Clapiers. To the right, the Pont-Escoffier power station is fed by the Le Plan du Lac dam. The Tête de la Muraillette peak (altitud..

  • 10 Écrins National Park Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    120 rue Gambetta

    Created in 1973, the Parc des Écrins was designated "Parc Européen de la Haute Montagne" by the Council of Europe. Its almost 100 000ha (270 000ha including the peripheral zone) make it the most vast French national park. Cut into by deep v..

  • 11 Vercors Massif Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Rising above Grenoble like a fortress, the Vercors became the largest natural park in the northern Alps in 1970. It is reached by narrow gorges such as the gorges of Engins, Grands Goulets or La Bourne. The high, open plateaux are covered with forest..

  • 12 Cascades du Hérisson Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    The source of the Hérisson is at an altitude of 805m, and the river tumbles down the slopes in spectacular waterfalls. It rapidly reaches the Doucier plateau, dropping 255m in 3km. In the gorges, it forms numerous waterfalls, such as the famous Casca..

  • 13 Cascade de l'Éventail Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    A path (leaving from Doucier, further west) leads to the foot of the Cascade de l'Eventail, from where you get the best view of the waterfall. The water tumbles in a series of jumps from a height of 65m, forming a grandiose pyramid of foaming water. ..

  • 14 Le Puy-en-Velay Episcopal City Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    pl. du For

    The episcopal city is reached from the Place de Tables via rue des Tables, the latter's flights of steps lined by old houses. A majestic staircase and the multicoloured lava-stone façade of the cathedral lie ahead, opening onto a well-preserved distr..

  • 15 Mont Mezenc Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    Formed of a procession of domes and volcanic peaks, called "sucs", the Mézenc massif draws the line between the waters of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. It has two radically different faces: it is steep in the direction of the Rhône; o..

  • Leave Sarlat heading southwest towards Beynac-et-Cazenac. Beynac, listed as "one of the most beautiful villages in France", boasts a charming location with a castle perched on the cliff above the village. Further east, on the left bank of t..

  • 17 Massif de l'Aigoual Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    The Aigoual mountain range is crisscrossed by a number of scenic roads, cutting through young forests or running along ridges which offer splendid views. Even though the summit is lost in cloud more often than not, on fine days it commands a tremendo..

  • 18 Cathedral Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    pl. Georges-Leclerc

    Begun in 1056, this cathedral is renowned for its elegant proportions, purity of design and profusion of ascending lines, culminating in 78m-high spires. The bold turreted lantern tower, noted for its slender ribbing, stands at a height of 41m at the..

  • 19 The Merveille Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    The name, which means the Marvel, refers to all the buildings built on the north face of the mount between 1211 and 1228, to house monks, pilgrims and distinguished guests. From the outside, the buildings resemble a fortress. The interior is a fine e..

  • 20 Cloisters Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    The cloisters seem to be suspended between the sea and the sky. The gallery arcades display richly sculptured foliage, ornamented with the occasional animal or human figure; there are also a few religious symbols. The carving is further set off by de..

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