France is one of the most visited countries in the world. And it perhaps will come at no surprise that the French capital, Paris, is one of the most sought after tourist destinations in the world. So if you’re planning a trip to France and wondering where you should visit (and where you might rather skip), these are the most visited cities in France ranked by popularity.
The most visited cities in France
Paris is the most visited city in France and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. The city is known for its iconic landmarks, such as the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, and Notre-Dame Cathedral. The city also offers a rich culinary scene, with famous dishes such as croissants, macarons, and escargots to try. In fact, if you fancy sweet treats be sure to allocate at least a few days to visiting Paris, as you will be spoiled for choice with the best patisseries in the world.
Nice is a beautiful city on the French Riviera, known for its long coastline and subsequent beaches, vibrant street life, and rich history. With a charming old town and vibrant nightlife, there is enough to see and do in Nice for at least a few days, before continuing your journey along the Mediterranean coast.
Lyon is the third-largest city in France and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is known for its historic architecture, museums, and vibrant cultural scene. One thing that surprised me during my time in Lyon, was to learn that it is the gastronomic capital of France. I was almost certain that would be Paris, however, it comes on good authority that Lyon is in fact the heart of gastronomy in France. So be sure to pack your loose-fitting pants, the best way to experience Lyon is to eat it!
Marseille is a bustling port city in the south of France, known for its vibrant street life, historic landmarks, and beautiful coastline. If you find yourself in the South of France, then you won’t want to miss Marseille. From the Vieux-Port to the Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde, there are endless reasons to add Marseille to your trip to France, especially in the summer months.
Bordeaux is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most famous wine regions in the world. The city is known for its beautiful architecture, museums, and perhaps most importantly wine tours. If you’re a wine lover like me, then you won’t want to miss the opportunity to visit Bordeaux, a city and region steeped in wine making (and drinking) history.
Strasbourg is a beautiful city in northeastern France, known for its historic architecture, picturesque canals, and Christmas markets. If you are looking for idyllic locations to visit during winter, Strasbourg and the greater Alsace region are certainly in the top few choices for having the best Christmas markets and charm during December.
These are just a few of the most visited cities in France, but the country has many other great destinations to explore, from the beaches of the French Riviera to the castles of the Loire Valley. As there are four distinct seasons in France, be sure to check the weather and build your trip around the regions of France that thrive in your given season.