france travel guide

France Travel Information

France is currently the most popular tourist destination in the world, with the annual 83 million international visitors surpassing the 65 million population of mainland France. Many tourists choose to travel to France’s capital, Paris and take in the rich culture and iconic monuments such as the Eiffel Tower. However, the rest of the country offers plenty of other wonders to discover.

Citizens from eligible countries looking to enjoy a short stay in France for tourism will be required to apply for the ETIAS France before traveling to the Schengen Area.

Travel to France with ETIAS

From 2022, passport holders from 60 eligible countries who want to travel to France for less than consecutive 90 days within a 180-day period will need to pre-register for the online ETIAS visa waiver for Schengen countries.

The ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System) is being implemented for short stays in France and will have a total validity of 3 years for entry to all 26 Schengen member states.

Travelers from countries including Mexico, Canada, and the United States will first have to meet the ETIAS France requirements to be eligible to apply. These are:

  • An eligible passport valid for 3 months upon arrival in France
  • A credit or debit card to pay the ETIAS for France fee
  • A current email address at which to receive the France ETIAS visa waiver.

Eligible travelers will have to complete the France ETIAS online application before travel to France. This will only take around 10-20 minutes and save the hassle of having to go to a French Embassy for a visa. Applicants will be required to fill in a range of personal and passport information, as well as explain their travel plans.

Applicants will also be asked some questions related to health and security, and all the data provided is then checked against European security databases to pre-screen any threats to EU border security. Upon approval, the traveler will be able to print a copy of the ETIAS visa waiver to present alongside their passport when entering France.

Where to Visit in France

Since it allows for a 90-day consecutive stay in France, those traveling with the France ETIAS should have enough time to get around most of the best attractions. Read on for the top France travel tips for the whole country.

The Best Attractions in North France

Northern France is absolutely brimming with impressive historical sites, such as the iconic abbey-island Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, in northwestern France. Lovers of fairytale architecture will also want to visit France’s Loire Valley, which boasts a number of stunning Renaissance-style châteaux.

Those who visit the town of Amiens north of Paris will be pleasantly surprised by the floating market gardens and gothic architecture. You can also visit the Jules Verne House museum, former home to the famous author of Around the World in Eighty Days.

On the other side of the country, visit Kayserberg in Alsace, close to the border with Germany. This charming traditional village boasts a range of magical Alsatian architecture straight out of Disney’s version of Beauty and the Beast. The surrounding countryside also boasts some of the best vineyards in France, with pinot gris wine a local specialty.

Travel to Paris

The French capital, Paris, is the most popular tourist destination in France and considered one of the most romantic cities in the world. Surprisingly, Notre Dame Cathedral is the most visited attraction in Paris, not the Eiffel Tower. The world-famous Louvre museum, which contains the iconic Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo, follows closely behind.

Those feeling brave enough can take a guided tour to visit the Paris catacombs, the vast underground tunnel network that once served as the city’s burial chambers. Or, for a relaxing day trip just outside the city, visit Paris Versailles Palace, the extravagant former home of the French royalty.

What to Visit in Southern France

Looking for an adventure holiday in France in Winter? Thrillseekers will want to head to the French Alps in the southeast for the best skiing and snowboarding in France, or the French Pyrenees bordering Spain.

If traveling to the southeast during summer, visit France’s lavender fields in Provence. The flowers bloom from June to August, transforming the landscape into a vast sea of fragrant purple.

However, the most enticing attraction in the region is the Côte d’Azur, France’s Mediterranean Coast. Long considered a luxury holiday destination, the region boasts 115 kilometers of golden beaches and affluent coastal towns such as Cannes, Saint-Tropez, and Monaco.

No matter which region you choose for a holiday, don’t forget to check France ETIAS requirements and apply for the France visa waiver before you travel to France!