With the advent of cheap flights from the UK to France, it is increasingly easy and popular to spend a weekend in the south of France.
You can set off on Friday evening, have the whole weekend somewhere glamorous, then return on Sunday evening – relaxed and ready to ask in the office on Monday ‘What did you do this weekend?’
Flights to France outside high season vary a lot according to your departure point but typical destinations for a long weekend in the south of France, both because they are accessible and because they are interesting when you get there, are Biarritz, Bordeaux, La Rochelle, Marseille and Nice. All these cities are highly recommended, and have plenty to amuse you without a car being necessary.
Biarritz and La Rochelle are on the Atlantic Coast, while Nice and Marseille are of course on the Mediterranean. Bordeaux is the only one of these towns that is not actually on the coast – it is slightly inland from the Atlantic. All the towns listed have their own particular appeal and advantages, and plenty of restaurants, hotels and nightlife etc.
Other destinations in the south of France are also possible for a long weekend, for example Bergerac and Rodez, which both have airports. These are smaller than the other destinations listed, and while enjoyable they have less facilities outside high season, and are mostly popular because of their easy access to the surrounding countryside and villages. You’ll still enjoy yourself, but even for a weekend stay a hire car is recommended.
All these destinations come highly recommended when you are heading off for a weekend, but which is best of all? Impossible to say, but for me I think Bordeaux just about wins. The city has had major refurbishments over the last 10 years, was European city of culture, has a very large centre of the town protected as a UNESCO heritage site, and is now one of the most exciting and vibrant cities in France. See Bordeaux hotels to find somewhere to stay or booking.com for all other cities mentioned.