Attracting over eighty million visitors each year, France is by far the world's most popular tourist destination. Choose from our top B&Bs in France. So whether it's the sun, the snow, the stylish cities or simply the famous French cuisine that appeals to you, a bed and breakfast in France is an authentic, affordable way to explore the country.
Our Brittany accommodation choice is Le Moulin de la Fontaine des Eaux, an eighteenth-century flour mill set in a wooded valley close to the charming medieval town of Dinan. A convenient half an hour from the port of Saint Malo, this friendly property has five self-contained suites including one family room. A continental breakfast is served on the sunny, south-facing terrace, and guests can spend a lazy summer's afternoon sunbathing on the lawn or watching kingfishers and herons by the millpond. The courtyard area is perfect for barbecues.
The South of France has long been a popular destination for holidaymakers. Situated on the River Orbiel, just outside the town of Mas Cabardès, is La Maison Fleur de Felice, a fifteenth-century auberge with three tastefully decorated rooms whose features such as exposed wooden beams and ornate furniture combine rustic charm with classic Provençal style. Modern conveniences are not lacking, with television, DVD and broadband internet access, but they are somewhat overshadowed by the spectacular Montagne Noire views on offer in the garden.
Loire Valley B&Bs
Also known as the garden of France, the Loire Valley is another popular holiday destination, extending approximately from Orléans in the East to Nantes and the Atlantic Ocean in the West, with more than three hundred châteaux in between. Chauché is a small village sixty kilometres south of Nantes and is home to La Belle Vue des Arbres, a pleasant B&B with a large garden bordered by woodland on one side and open countryside on the other. Guests can enjoy a number of outdoor activities, including bike riding, walks in the country and fishing in the pond.
Our second Provence B&B, Hostel de lÂ'Etoile, is located on the outskirts of the fashionable French Riviera city of Marseille, the oldest city in France and an important centre for art and culture. Set within an attractive walled garden, this historical house has three individually decorated rooms with impressive views of the surrounding landscape. Situated conveniently close to the Technopôle Marseille, facilities include wireless internet access, parking and a swimming pool.
As France's fourth largest city, culturally-rich Toulouse is home to a wealth of historical architecture, including the Place du Capitole, Saint George's Square, the Church of the Jacobins and, of course, the Saint Sernin Basilica. In the midst of all this is Les Loges de Saint-Sernin, a typical nineteenth-century bourgeois townhouse which provides bed and breakfast accommodation in four light and airy rooms, elegantly decorated with fireplaces, large windows and balconies offering views over the city.
Achieving consistently high ratings from customers, Le Moulin de Villez offers tastefully furnished, country-style rooms in a peaceful setting in Giverny, close to the famous home and gardens of the impressionist painter, Claude Monet. Set in an ancient mill with a still-functioning wheel, the luxurious rooms of this chambre d'hôtes (a typical French guesthouse) feature en-suite bathrooms and large windows or balconies with garden views.
Le Mans B&Bs
A fifteenth-century château, complete with turrets, towers and a wide moat, sets an enchanting scene for a romantic getaway in France. Set in wooded grounds amid the town that grew up around it, the château B&B offers spacious, en-suite rooms and facilities including a library, a meeting room, badminton, croquet and even Chinese massage. Nearby, guests can try their hand at horse riding, fishing and archery, as well as more modern pursuits such as golf and karting, and, of course, the races at Le Mans are not far away.
A two-hundred-year-old stone merchant's house is the setting for Janie's Place, a small bed and breakfast which features just 3 cosy rooms, a spacious courtyard and an attractive walled orchard garden, and serves delicious vegetarian cuisine prepared using home-grown vegetables. The property is located just an hour from La Rochelle, Cognac and Poitiers in historic Angoulême, a charming town of pavement cafés, quaint boutiques and typical French markets protected by ancient city walls.
The medieval bastide village of Castillonnes is located in Lot et Garonne, an area of southwest France famous for its good food, fine wine, rich history and unspoilt countryside. It is also home to Maison de Poitiers, an eighteenth-century inn which offers B&B accommodation in 5 beautifully appointed guestrooms. Featuring themes such as the Chambre Chinoise and the Chambre Baroque, each has been individually designed and impeccably furnished with antique French furniture.
Built as a command post by the Knights of the Order of the Maltese Cross, our third Provence property, Domaine de la Fosse, spent much of its life as a fruit farm and vineyard. The property now concentrates half of its efforts on growing rice and the other half on providing first-class B&B accommodation to visitors to the Petite Camargue area. Guestrooms are simply and rustically decorated but feature understated touches of Classic French style.
La Roseraie is an elegant town and country guesthouse offering luxury bed and breakfast accommodation in light and airy guest rooms. Meals are enjoyed in the Grand Maison, surrounded by antique mirrors, chandeliers, paintings and fresh flowers, and there is a large outdoor swimming pool with a bar. Set in four acres of private parkland, the property is just a few minutes' walk from the village of Neuville-de-Poitou, and is centrally located for visiting the châteaux of the Loire Valley as well as the seaside town of La Rochelle.
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Find out more information about travel in France at FranceGuide.com.
By: Eleanor Brown