Do you know what struck me most in France? No, not the Eiffel Tower, and not even a place for meetings and meetings in Paris — Boulevard Saint-Michel, where the youth hustle and voices forever reign. Most of all I was impressed by the endless expanses of vineyards and some elusive, barely present, but at the same time never leaving you a delicate aroma. Having been in many countries, I can say with confidence that I have never noticed such a thing.
Whether you walk along the streets of Paris, or drive in an open car across the province of Champagne, or walk on the coast of the island of Corsica, this thin, barely perceptible aroma of France accompanies you everywhere and always. And it cannot be compared with anything, not to be confused with anything, but it is also impossible to describe with words.
By the way, for all our stay in France, we never managed to meet a single person, from whom it would smell, I’m sorry, not very pleasant. The French love the flavors. Perhaps that is why we were constantly accompanied by a pleasant, delicately developing fragrance of France.
My husband and I began our vacation in France from the island of Corsica, and never regretted it. Although it was possible to first go to get acquainted with Paris, we decided to start acquaintance with France from its provinces.
Corsica impressed with its magnificence and diversity. Here, even the pickiest tourist will not be left disappointed. The island is warmed by the sun all year round, and you can fly to rest at any time of the year and immediately plunge into the warmth of the sun’s rays, into the overflow from the waves of the warm sea, and into the splendor of snowy mountain peaks.
And I will never stop wondering how this is possible when you just climbed the lift, and then, going down from the mountains, playing with your beloved snowballs – and now you’re on the beach, and everything is flooded with sunshine and the warm sea tempts.
The longer we rested in France, the deeper understood the French and their culture. By the way, this is the greatest misconception that the French are very rude people. This is a complete lie. The French are very friendly, open to communication and hospitable – unless you break any cultural norms, speak French and look into their eyes. That’s how simple it is! But this is understandable, I myself was annoyed at one time when tourists come to us in Russia and do not try to study at least a few sentences in Russian. After all, this is a kind of disrespect for the nation where you are visiting. And about cultural norms, you can always find information on this on the Internet or buy a book about France and the peculiarities of the local population.
So, we quickly found a language with the French, since both of us and my husband know French quite well. And before making out a tour, we learned some cultural characteristics and preferences of the French. For example, that for the French is not at all disrespectful, when discussing a topic, they interrupt you. Or that it is better not to mention the Second World War, as this topic still hurt their pride and prestige of the nation. Or the fact that in public transport there are special places reserved for women with children or people with disabilities. And what not to take them, even if they are empty.
These are seemingly subtleties, but they greatly facilitated our stay in France.
After enjoying a holiday on the island of Corsica, we went to France, to Paris. And just traveling by car through this small, but such an amazing country, we realized how much diversity and wonders are fraught with even the smallest region.
Paris met us with lights, the noise of voices and, of course, its grandeur. We didn’t manage to sleep in Paris. And not because someone interfered with this, but because it was a pity every extra minute spent in the realm of dreams. After all, how many interesting, exciting and new! At the same time, we did not go around Paris with tour groups. My husband and I armed ourselves with comfortable shoes, comfortable clothes and a backpack with a thermos and sandwiches, and every day we went to wander the streets of Paris.
When we were very tired, we took tea with cheese in some cafe on the embankment and gave ourselves not only physical rest, but also rest from so many impressions and emotions.
I do not want to re-state the same information that you can read on any site that describes tours to France. I just want you to understand one thing – if you ever have the opportunity and decide to give yourself an unforgettable vacation for two, then a vacation in France is one of the best gifts for you. The main thing is to try to learn a little French, and when you arrive in France, rent a car and feel free to travel around this good-natured, open and fabulous country.