Last updated on September 12th, 2017 at 10:48 am
Nature attractions-France are particularly interesting to see and experience.
France is often called the crossroad of Europe. Indeed, France is in the middle of everything and its landscapes are as diversified as Europe itself.
Surrounded by ocean and sea and also being a neighbour of many countries, France gives many samples of European landscapes.
This diversity brings a big range of nature attractions. From forest and old volcanoes to sandy beaches and pinewood, France has a lot to offer if you are a nature attractions lover…
Here is some of the top natural wonders in France :
Nature Attractions-France 1: Mont Blanc
Where is it ? The Mont blanc is located on the eastside of France, nearby the border with Switzerland.
The Mont blanc has always been the pride of France. This majestic 4810 meters high giant overlooks the valley of Chamonix.
It’s the third most visited nature attraction in the world and it has a lot to offer. A fancy ski resort for some, an alpinism sanctuary for others – one thing is sure: the Mount blanc leaves everyone speechless!
Since climbing the Mont Blanc requires to be already trained and an experienced walker (the hike usually takes 3 days), there is a full range of other activities to do in this wonderful and magical area of Chamonix.
From the valley, you’ll already be amazed by the beauty of this summit, covered by snow. Waterfalls, gorges and lakes.
The waterfalls, gorges and lakes in the Mont Blanc massif are worth a visit.
Indeed, there are plenty of them to discover mostly between 2000 and 2500 meters of altitude, which creates a great opportunity for number of gorgeous walks and hikes.
Some of them tend to be long or demanding in terms of effort but the incredible beauty of the sceneries will make you forget the pain.
Here is the list of more nature attractions: Bérard Waterfalls, Dard Waterfalls, Diosaz Gorges, the White Lake, the Blue Lake, the Green Lake, the Blake Lakes and more.
Montenvers, the Sea of Ice
By taking a famous red train from Chamonix, you’ll access an incredible panorama of the Sea of Ice glacier, the Drus and the Big Jorasses.
From there you’ll get to visit the Ice Cavern to discover the mountaineers life during the 19th century.
The “Glacorium” is a complex dedicated to the story of the ice, the geology throughout times. It’s a pedagogic and interactive place to visit.
From this point, several walks are available to reach Chamonix by going down.
The area offers tons of lookouts. Accessible by hiking trails, there are more than 20 peaks to discover.
Those spots will give you freedom, the purest fresh air and a unique sensation of tranquillity.
Chamonix and the Mont Blanc area is of course a great place for ski and winter sports. That’s why the resort is famous all over the world.
Nature Attractions-France 2: Gorges du Verdon
The regional park of Verdon is located on the southern east side of France nearby the well known French Riviera.
The Verdon is a protected and preserved regional park. This natural site is vast and large, but today we’ll focus on the Verdon gorges.
This canyon is often considered the most beautiful canyon in Europe. And the place truly deserves the title. Indeed, this huge canyon is unbelievably magnificent.
The water has an unique colour and the contrast with the rocks and the sky is breathtaking.
For a perfect day (or more!) at the Verdon gorges consider renting a pedal boat. With that you’ll be able to go to the heart of the canyon.
The water is usually fresh, and even cold, but during summer, when the sun is burning, people love to take a bath in it.
The boat rental usually lasts from 1 to 2 hours which is enough. The rest of the day can be spend on the beach of the Sainte Croix Lake.
Beside water leisure activities, the Verdon is a good place for hikers, campers, cyclists and nature lovers.
This gigantic nature attraction in France is a must-do. Landscapes are sumptuous, and wild.
Nature Attractions-France 3: Etretat Cliffs
The Etretat cliffs are located in Normandie, north-west part of France. These incredibly beautiful cliffs are famous all over the world.
Etretat is a name of a group of several cliffs. Each of them has its name and its own shape. Their singular shapes inspired many artists.
Some people see an elephant drinking or even a boat! Its up to you to imagine whatever your imagination allows you to. The Etretat cliffs are home of many stories and legends to discover.
There you can also visit the market. A vibrant place where people meet around lovely workshops.
The Etretat Gardens are a great lookout. Indeed, from there you can see the sumptuous cliffs and the waves. The garden itself is a pretty place composed of plants and flowers and even sculptures made of plants, inspired by the Normandie landscapes.
Another famous place is the Etretat golf park. The Gold has an exceptional location, 50 meters above the sea. An original way to golf!
Around Etretat, there are other interesting locations to visit such as Honfleur, Le Havre or Dieppe.
Etretat and its improbable cliffs are surely an amazing nature attraction in France.
Nature Attractions-France 4: The Camargue
Where is it? The Camargue is a protected area in the southeast of France, not far from Marseille.
This incredible natural regional park is mostly made of swamps and vegetations. Home of many fauna and flora species, this place is considered as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO.
The Camargue is a well known destination and one of the popular places for French people living nearby for leisure activities and nature attraction. It’s where flamingos, bulls, birds, fishes, vegetation and men live together.
The swamps are very appreciated for their fauna and flora such as beautiful wild flamingos. Associated with a vibrant and surprising culture, the Camargue is lovely and charming. Perfect for romantic dates or family vacation, everybody loves this place.
It’s an inspirational nature attraction in France. The bulls, horses and birds create a poetic landscape to discover.
The Camargue also have huge and wild beaches and sand dunes, where horses walk along the water at sunset. Many leisure activities are available such as horse riding in the swamps, water sports, bird watching, boat getaways and so much more…
Nature Attractions-France 5: Auvergne Volcanos
Where is it? The Auvergne region is located right in the center of France. Often called the “human desert”, this area of the country has a very low rate of inhabitants per square meter.
However, this area is still a great place of interest for tourists. The nature attraction here is mostly the presence of old volcanoes.
They are a testimony of the past and the evolution of geology during past centuries.
Different mountains, lakes and forests are wild and unchanged by men. This is the perfect nature attraction in France for hikers and cyclists. The landscapes are wide, green and pure.
A huge range of walks for every level is available for tourists to take a breath of fresh air. One of the most famous and popular activities is the visit of the regional park of volcanoes.
This natural heritage is well preserved to guarantee an amazing experience for visitors.
Nature Attractions-France 6: Calanques de Marseille
Where is it? The Calanques of Marseille is located in the south-east of France. This incredible area provides sun, a nourishing sea and beautiful landscapes.
Between canyon and cliffs, this nature attraction in France is a gigantic playground for kids and big kids too! This endless source of fun is a must-see in the country.
The mediterranean sea here is sometimes translucent, sometimes the color of the sky, sometimes dark blue. This paradisiac site allows you to jump from the cliffs and rocks, snorkel, relax on the edge of a cliff, have a pic-nic…
Exactly what everybody expects from a natural site on the mediterranean coast. Hiking, cycling and rock climbing are also some favourites in the Calanques.
The biodiversity of the Calanques is rich: more than 140 different animal and plants species, all protected and preserved. Locals know some original and wonderful spots.
They’ll be happy to share some with you, to make you discover the pride of their city, Marseille.
Nature Attractions-France 7: Cap Fréhel peninsula
Where is it? The Cap Fréhel Peninsula is located within the Brittany Region (called Bretagne in French). The Bretagne, on the north-west of France is well known for its landscapes, myths and its rich History.
70 meters above the sea, cliffs of shale and pink sandstones offer a wonderful lookout. Probably one of the most beautiful of the entire Brittany.
The sea has the color of the emeraudes, the wind is strong and the sensations are great. The moors cover 400 hectares of the area, one of the largest in Europe. There is a majestic lighthouse as well.
From May to October, the Cape offers a symphony of shimmering colors. Plus, it’s an ornithological reserve. From there, you can watch thousands of birds.
Some of them are even pretty rare such as the Torda Penguin, only 20 of them live in the bay. If you are lucky enough you might be able to spot one.
There’s a walking trail to do at the Cape Fréhel Peninsula to reach the old fort. The one and half hour walk is so worth it! Indeed, the path along the coast is nice and refreshing.
At the end, you’ll reach the old building where you can visit the chapel or the donjon. This place has been used for movies purpose.
Nature Attractions-France 8: French Alps
The French Alps are a huge ensemble of cities, territories and landscapes Located between the Southeastern part of France and the east, this mountain rage occupies two regions and six departments.
It is also shared with other countries such as Switzerland and Italy. But, today, it’s gonna be all about the French part of the Alps.
Perfect for hiking, long walks, winter sports, retreats from the cities, the French Alps have wonderful landscapes and opportunities to offer.
Ski French Alps
Because of its location, the French Alps offer a high altitude and a huge snow cover, as well as bright and sunny days.
There is the 9 ski stations in the area, that every ski lover should try. Those are:
Serre Chevalier, Montgenèvre, Puy Saint-Vincent, Vars-Risoul La Forêt Blanche, Les Orres, Orcières Merlette 1850 et SuperDévoluy – La Joue du Loup (with a freeride spot, famous worldwide), La Grave – La Meije.
The Alps have also well maintained village-stations, loved for their authenticity and their charm.
Hiking French Alps
Not surprising but still exciting, hiking and walks are a must-do in this area.
There are plenty of climbing and hiking spots to discover, for experienced athletes or beginners. The Barre des Ecrins and the glaciers of Ecrins, Valgaudemar, and La Meije, are very much liked.
Sport and leisure activities
Because of the altitude, the French Alps became an exceptional spot for extreme sports and aerial activities: sailplane, parachute, helicopter and so much more.
Mountains and altitude have always been a source of rest and wellness.
In French Alps, enjoy the quietness and the beauty of the sceneries while relaxing in a spa facility or in an hydrotherapy center. This destination is recommended for the pureness of water, air and nature itself.
However, The French Alps are a amazing spot for sports and leisures in mountains and also to get some rest far away from the city’s agitation