france flag

“Le drapeau tricolore”

The origin of the flag dates to 1790, the French Revolution when the ancient French colour of white was combined with the blue and red colours of the Parisian militia.

Thanks to its historical, cultural and geopolitical characteristics France is one the multipurpose journey destinations. Whatever your objective would be, you will find it in abundance at France due to its variety and richness in tastes.

France[1] is located in the Western Europe; bordering Bay of Biscay and English Channel between Spain and Belgium, bordering the Mediterranean Sea between Spain and Italy.

France is also neighbour to Switzerland, Germany and Luxembourg.

Area         : 551.500 sq km
Population: 62.814.233 (July 2012 est.)
Language : French
Currency  : Euro

 France 3

The capital city is Paris and it is located in the centre of Île de France region which is home to 11,5 million of above mentioned population. Other popular cities are; Lyon and Bordeaux for gastronomic pleasures, Monpellier and Toulouse as student cities, Marseille and Pyrenees for the explorers, Normandy, Alsace, Lille and Strasbourg for historical, political or general visits. Last but not least, spare some time for Cannes, Nice and St Tropez at the Côte d’Azur, which lies on the south east of France at Mediterranean Sea and offers great enjoyment.

The main hub for arrivals by air is Paris Charles de Gaulle, which is served by both major and budget airlines. The main access points by train from most countries are Gare du Nord, Gare de Lyon and Gare d’Austerlitz. The Eurolines coach service connects most European countries to France, and the main arrival point in Paris is Gare Routière. Once you are in France you will take the benefit of most extensive rail network in Western Europe, which is run by government owned SNCF.

France’s cultural heritage is the fruit of a long history and French passion for the arts. Some 750 pieces of property are classified on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The architectural heritage is particularly important, whether it be religious, civilian, military or industrial. France’s museums count exceptional collections bearing testimony to the history of art from around the world, such as the Louvre and the great schools of French paintings of the 19th and 20th centuries. France is also the country of great writers and distinguished composers, not to mention the homeland of cinema, renowned filmmakers, as well as actors and actresses who have been recognized around the world.

As I particularly witnessed all of these above mentioned amenities of life during my various visits I recommend you to plan your vacation on advance. Take your camera, read some French literature, watch some French movies and try to learn few French words to make your staying flawless. Although English is  widely spoken, efforts to express yourselves in French is highly appreciated.

For further information you can visit the official website of the French Government Tourist Office and
 in addition to that, you can find information on festivals, expos, events and concerts here at your finger tip.

Au revoir!

[1] French Republic comprise of Metropolitan France, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mayotte and Reunion. However, in this essay the term France only refers to the Metropolitan France.

Ergun UNUTMAZ, 26/02/2013