Holidays and Things to do

La Piscine Museum Roubaix | An art deco wonder in the north of France

La Piscine Museum Roubaix | An art deco wonder in the north of France

Written by on February 7, 2019 in Museums and Châteaux

Roubaix is in the suburbs of Lille, capital of Hauts-de-France (Nord, Pas de Calais, Picardy). It was once famous for its textile production, an industry which had been active in the area since the 14th century. In the 19th century Roubaix was known as the “French Manchester”, one of the world capitals of textiles. It […]

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What’s on in France March 2019

What’s on in France March 2019

Written by on February 4, 2019 in Month By Month

Provence – Tourrettes-sur-Loup, Alpes Maritime, Festival of Violets. The whole village smells of violets, there are farmers markets, and a violet parade with a battle of the flowers! Held annually first weekend in March. tourrettessurloup.com Rhone-Alpes Grenobles 7-28 March 2019: Grenoble Jazz Festival. For more than 40 years this festival has established itself as a premier jazz […]

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A photo guide to the Chateau de Chambord Loire Valley

A photo guide to the Chateau de Chambord Loire Valley

Written by on February 4, 2019 in Museums and Châteaux

The Chateau de Chambord is a French Renaissance masterpiece. This jewel of the Loire Valley was begun in 1519, the year Francis 1 became King of France. The flamboyant Francis I loved to put on a show and at Chambord, his imagination ran wild. This grand castle in true Renaissance style was designed to shout […]

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Gastronomy

Recipe for French gingerbread Pain d’Epices

Recipe for French gingerbread Pain d’Epices

Written by on January 22, 2019 in Desserts

Whenever I visit the small town of Buxy in France’s Côte Chalonnaise, you will likely find me at the tiny market held in the centre ville on Thursday mornings. Though there aren’t many stalls, every-thing on offer is absolutely delicious. I especially look forward to stopping by the stand selling honey and French gingerbread, or […]

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Chestnut cream-filled meringues with chocolate sauce

Chestnut cream-filled meringues with chocolate sauce

Written by on January 22, 2019 in Desserts

Taking hardly any time at all to prepare these sweet, crunchy meringues filled with chestnut cream and covered in hot chocolate sauce are a dreamy dessert! Serves 6 Preparation time: 10 minutes 1.5 cups (200g) thick crème fraiche 1 heaped tablespoon mascarpone 2 teaspoons sweet chestnut purée (crème de marrons) 50z (150g) bittersweet chocolate 5 […]

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Recipe for Apple and Blackberry Clafoutis

Recipe for Apple and Blackberry Clafoutis

Written by on January 22, 2019 in Desserts

Clafoutis is one of the most versatile French desserts and finds its origins in the Limousin, a lush, green region situated in the heart of the Massif Central. If you’ve never made or tasted clafoutis before, think of it as a ‘custardy’ type of cake. It doesn’t call for that much flour, so there isn’t […]

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Culture and Language

A most incredible art event for 2019 | Lille3000 is weird, whacky and wonderful

A most incredible art event for 2019 | Lille3000 is weird, whacky and wonderful

Written by on January 11, 2019 in Art and Artists

In 2015 I went to the Lille for the opening parade of Lille3000. I had no idea what to expect. I’d heard from friends that it was a quirky and incredible art “event” but nothing prepared me for the reality. Held every few years, Lille3000 is a huge event with what seems like a strange […]

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Who was Jean Jaurès | History of France

Who was Jean Jaurès | History of France

Written by on December 18, 2018 in French Icons

Wherever you go in France you’re sure to come across a Place Jean Jaurès, a rue Jean Jaurès, Avenue Jean Jaurès, schools and even metro stations of that name in Paris and Lyon. Every French school child will learn about Jean Jaurès. He is one of the most well-known figures of French history, though he […]

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A Soap story from Marseille | Savon de Marseille

A Soap story from Marseille | Savon de Marseille

Written by on December 18, 2018 in French Icons, French Style

Genuine Marseille soap is made by artisans with the provenance, passion and long-standing tradition in their blood to lay claim to makers of genuine Marseilles soap. A bar that contains 72% olive oil – and once tried, you will always be loyal to its soapy concoction. History of Marseille Soap In 1688 Louis IV passed […]

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Regions of France

Bordeaux City | Pey Berland district

Bordeaux City | Pey Berland district

Written by on February 2, 2019 in Aquitaine

Bordeaux city has several distinct districts each quite different from each other. Pey Berland has a blend of old and new and a hip vibe plus Bordeaux’s only shopping mall. Pey Berland Bordeaux This district is an interesting mix of elegant 18th century architecture and contemporary 1960s construction. It’s home to the administrative center of […]

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5 Brilliant things to do in the Haute-Pyrenees, France

5 Brilliant things to do in the Haute-Pyrenees, France

Written by on February 1, 2019 in Rhône Alpes

The French Pyrenees are a mountain range unlike any other. Situated along the French-Spanish border, these mountains have a distinct medieval history. Although they are less famous than their eastern sisters the Alps, their relative obscurity gives the Pyrenees a distinct peace. Robynne McTaggart of Le Belvedere, a gorgeous holiday rental home in the lush […]

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The French Renaissance in the Loire Valley

The French Renaissance in the Loire Valley

Written by on January 31, 2019 in Centre

2019 sees a major celebration of the French Renaissance heritage in the Loire Valley and the Centre-Val de Loire region.  We look at what sparked the French Renaissance and how the key date of 1519 marks the 500th anniversary with a rich programme of events and celebration… What is the French Renaissance? The finale of […]

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Live in france

Your garden birds need you

Your garden birds need you

Written by on February 12, 2019 in Pets And Animals

There has been a sharp decline in many common garden birds across the whole of Europe over the last 40 years.  Winter and early Spring often present bleak and extremely cold conditions, with long periods of sub-zero temperatures in many parts of France.  It’s important to remember that birds die of hunger, rather than cold, […]

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The Good Life France | Expats in the Hautes-Pyrénées

The Good Life France | Expats in the Hautes-Pyrénées

Written by on January 23, 2019 in Living in France

Robynne McTaggart loves to spend time in France, whether skiing in the alps or enjoying the summer in the picturesque villages and glorious countryside. With a business doing well in Perth, Australia where she and husband Garry live, Robynne decided to find a home of her own in 2006. She set herself a goal – […]

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Escape to the Chateau | Dick and Angel talk about the good life in France

Escape to the Chateau | Dick and Angel talk about the good life in France

Written by on January 19, 2019 in Living in France

Dick Strawbridge and wife Angel Adoree relocated from the UK in 2015 to do up a run-down 5-storey chateau with 45 rooms in Mayenne, Pays de la Loire, France. “It was cheaper than a one-bedroom flat in East London” says Dick – but it needed a lot of work to transform it into the home […]

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Property in France

Cheap properties for sale in Charente, Poitou Charentes

Cheap properties for sale in Charente, Poitou Charentes

Written by on February 4, 2019 in Property for sale

The department of Charente in southwest France, is in Nouvelle Aquitaine, previously known as Poitou-Charentes. It’s one of the sunniest corners of France with roughly 25% more sunshine hours than the UK. Served by excellent motorways, airports close by, plus fast trains to Paris from the departmental capital Angouleme. There are plenty of opportunities for […]

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Top tips to help you with your move to France

Top tips to help you with your move to France

Written by on February 2, 2019 in Buying a Home

Dick and Angel Strawbridge of Escape to the Chateau fame share their top tips for those dreaming of buying a chateau and moving to France. But these do’s and don’t’s are good for anyone making the move to the good life in France… Key things to consider when you move to France Location is key: […]

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5 Top tips for Chateau hunters in France

5 Top tips for Chateau hunters in France

Written by on January 30, 2019 in Buying a Home

Lots of us dream of owning our own chateau in France. Some of us take a massive leap of faith to make those dreams come true. It isn’t always easy, especially if you buy a listed property which comes with restrictions, requirements and remits galore. But owning, renovating, bringing a chateau back to life – […]

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Recent Articles

Bon weekend from Paris…

Bonjour, Hope you had a great week. This week I’ve been in Paris and what a time I’ve had – totally and utterly spoiled, and not only because I didn’t have to get up and feed chickens, ducks and geese, walk the dogs or provide maid service for the cats! I’ve been working on an […]

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Showtime in Paris – and a very special ticket offer

There’s plenty to see and do when you visit Paris but to get a real feel for its authentic love of the arts – take in a show! From concerts to comedy, circus and cabaret, musicals to theatrical performances – there’s something for everyone of every age and every taste. And, from 25 February to […]

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We’re giving away award winning, utterly delicious French rosé wine!

We’re delighted to have teamed up with Mirabeau Wine of Provence to make two wine lovers very happy! All you have to do is sign up to Mirabeau’s Facebook page to go into a draw so they can contact winners. Two winners will be chosen* and each will receive two crates of scrumptious rosé wine […]

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