France - Culinary Travel Overview
A journey to France is nothing short of a pilgrimage for foodies and today’s culinary travelers take an even more focused approach to their itinerary planning.
Paris & Provence
Paris remains perennially popular and a French food urban adventure can happily begin and end within the city proper. Paris has a culinary legacy like no other city, with its dynamic markets, bistros, boulangeries and delightfully ubiquitous sidewalks cafes artfully situated beneath the Eiffel Tower. It is a feast for all our senses.
Paris pairs beautifully with sun-drenched Provence replete with lavender fields, hilltop villages, vineyards, teeming open-air markets – and the scent of garlic. The wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape complement this never to be forgotten cuisine.
We suggest adding Lyon into the mix. France’s 2nd largest city and the gateway to Provence, it’s considered its culinary capital and the options for cooking lessons and edible experiences are exciting. Dining runs the gamut from the traditional bouchons to Michelin-starred restaurants including that of Lyon’s favorite son, famed Chef Paul Bocuse.
See our delicious new tour — parfait for your group.
"Our Paris trip was wonderful and we loved the W Paris-Opera Hotel. Many thanks for all your help." — Kathleen & Karen, Chicago, IL
"Our group of 14 friends spent 10 days in France enjoying a culinary tour organized by Forks on the Road. Our days were a kaleidoscope of vineyard visits, cooking classes, chocolate tastings, art walks and incredible meals! We also loved our boutique hotels and browsing in local markets to find the perfect souvenir. Forks on the Road did an outstanding job and made this one of the most memorable trips I've taken in Europe. Highly recommended!"
— Judy Gilbert, Cape Cod, MA
Traveling south to the French Riviera presents the opportunity to sample its distinctive rustic cuisine including bouillabase, the hearty fish soup of Marseilles seasoned with saffron.
In the northwest, there is Normandy, home of French cider, Calvados apple brandy and Camembert cheese, and Brittany, the birthplace of the crepe, offer quaint villages, history and miles of dramatic coastline. This region includes several of France’s Sites of Exceptional Taste including Cancale, world famous for its oysters.
Burgundy and the Rhone are renowned for their wines. Central France boasts a plethora of Michelin-starred restaurants and it’s the destination to enjoy its signature dish Beef Bourguignon and dine on snails. Those who travel to the French Alps to ski and spa become enamored with its dozens of cheeses. Compte, with its nutty flavor, is alone worth the trek. The foods of Alcase and Lorraine have a distinct German influence and goose and foi gras are among the specialties.
Foodies on the forefront are heading to Pay Basque in the south western corner of France, nestled along the Spain border. (Spain’s Basque County is on the other side and locals go easily back-and-forth.) The old historical province of Gascony embraced the farm-to-fork concept long before it was considered artisanal and its cuisine is hearty and special. If you visit, enjoy a glass of Armagnac, the region’s brandy.
Francophiles and foodies contact us for culinary travel to France.