France – the very essence of romance – beckons lovers with its enchanting streets, charming cafes and breathtaking landscapes. While Paris, affectionately known as the ‘City of Love’, often steals the spotlight, there are numerous other places across France that will set your heart aflutter. Picture late-night strolls along lamp-lit boulevards, the melodic ambiance of bistro dinners a deux and early morning visits to boulangeries avec ton amore. Get ready to swoon over our list of the most romantic places in France and start spreading some L-O-V-E…
Perched atop a hill in Provence, the village of Éze boasts one of the Côte d'Azur's most splendid panoramas. At over 1300ft above sea level, it offers breathtaking views of the glittering French Riviera and serves as a serene escape from the bustling world below. Éze's stone fortifications encircle the hill, leading to the village's sole entrance, and inside you’ll find narrow lanes winding past vine-covered galleries, cafes and restaurants. Stroll through the cobbled streets, before relaxing at a café with your beloved and savouring a coffee or aperitif. A visit to Le Jardin Exotique (The Exotic Garden) confirms Éze's status as an oasis; lush succulents and towering cacti paint a vibrant picture, with emerald green foliage contrasting against the deep azure of the sea.
Saint-Paul de Vence, the ancient charmer of the French Riviera, oozes that irresistible Côte d'Azur allure. Situated on a steep rocky promontory that spans over six miles, the village has its own romantic history: it was fortified by the King of France, destroyed in 1747 and then lovingly rebuilt by a group of impressionist artists two centuries later. In fact, Pablo Picasso was one of the artists who helped transform this classic Provencal stone town into an artistic hilltop enclave. Stroll along the sun-drenched main avenue – where celebrity homes twinkle like jewels in the surrounding hills – and be sure to stop by Café de la Place, where locals gather to play boules and revel in the tranquillity of a slow-paced life.
Colmar, the Alsatian wine capital, combines half-timbered charm with unreserved romantic appeal. Akin to stepping into the pages of Beauty and the Beast, you’ll find candy-coloured houses adorned with bright geraniums and French shutters lining the tranquil canals, with serene boats gently gliding by. Explore ‘la petite Venise’ (Little Venice) on a walking tour with your loved one and don't forget to pause for some Insta-worthy photographs. Colmar is teeming with a kaleidoscope of colours, from peach and periwinkle to lilac and canary, all of which can be seen during a bike ride through its winding streets and picturesque countryside. Make a stop at cosy Alsatian wine tavern La Soi for a glass of white wine and a hot tarte flambée on your return.
Nestled against the backdrop of the Alps, Annecy boasts one of France's most picturesque old towns. With canals meandering through the heart of the city and colourful buildings overlooking the pathways and bridges, the town has been affectionately nicknamed the ‘Venice of France.’ Annecy exudes romance, and the Pont des Amours bridge even has its own origin love story; legend has it that lovers who kiss in the middle of it will be united for life. The emerald-hued Lake Annecy against a background of distant snow-capped mountains makes for a mesmerising sight, and while here you can explore castles and cathedrals, wander along the city's charming streets and visit the L'Ecluse Fleurie (Bridge of Flowers).
We couldn’t list the most romantic places in France without mentioning the (aptly named) ‘City of Love’. Beyond the iconic Grands Boulevards lies a quieter, more intimate side of the French capital waiting to be explored; wander through picturesque passageways, like the book-filled Passage Verdeau or the gas lamp-lit Passage des Panoramas, which evoke a stuck-in-time charm; take amorous strolls along the well-loved Montmartre; or venture to the nearby vineyards – the last of their kind in the city – for private wine tours and tastings. Whether you're sauntering along the Champs Elysée, admiring the Eiffel Tower at night, enjoying a sunset cruise down the Seine or picnicking in the Luxembourg Gardens, every moment in Paris is imbued with romance.
Bordeaux captivates from the moment you glimpse its iconic 18th-century skyline. Bursting with charm and historic significance, palaces, castles and bridges contribute to the city’s fairytale-like ambiance. But Bordeaux isn't just about city charm; it's also the wine world's favourite playground. Picture grand chateaus, fine chardonnays and vineyard vistas that might well make your heart skip a beat. So, whether you're into breathtaking landscapes, historical treasures or just love a good glass of wine, Bordeaux's got your back as one of the most romantic places in France.
The island village of Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy resembles a scene plucked straight from the pages of a fairy tale. Its romantic side is best seen during the approach – a 760-metre-long bridge leads from the northern French coastline to the UNESCO World Heritage site. With the abbey of Mont Saint-Michel as its centrepiece, this legendary site has been drawing pilgrims for over a thousand years. Surrounding the abbey, you’ll find a picturesque village filled with meandering medieval streets, charming boutiques and cosy cafes – the perfect setting for your own fairy-tale sojourn.