How to Plan Your Summer In France

 
 Photographs by  Hannah Alyssa

Photographs by Hannah Alyssa

Our adventure began in Paris, where we filled our days wandering through the quiet streets of Montmartre and Marais and ended them admiring the Eiffel Tower, sparkling in all her glory, over banana nutella crepes. Three musts when visiting: La Maison Rose, Cafe Louis Philippe and Rue Crémieux, a photographer’s dream! Following bicycle rides through the Gardens of Versailles and a climb to the top of the Arc de Triomphe, we headed to our next destination: Annecy, known as the “Venice of the Alps.”

From the moment we arrived in Annecy, the Sound of Music soundtrack was on repeat in my head. You truly feel as if you’ve stepped into a fairytale with its charming canals (swans included) and overflowing window boxes. While it was quite cold and raining while we were there, we couldn’t resist a boat ride around Lake Annecy, and we happily warmed up with chai tea lattes at a quaint local café, Brumes.

On our way to Provence, we rented a car and drove to the port town of Cassis, where our morning started at the beach, lunch consisted of rosé and our afternoon was filled exploring hidden coves with crystal clear water and quiet winding streets dotted with an abundance of colorful blooms.

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Next, we checked into Hotel Le Colombier in Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, one of the most beautiful villages. After a breakfast of freshly made baguettes and jams, yogurt and summer fruits, we headed to Lac de Sainte-Croix and spent the morning paddle boating through its breathtaking turquoise waters. We ended the day running through nearby lavender fields and enjoying a glass of wine along with a lavender honey and goat cheese wood-fired pizza at Brasserie Chez Benoit.

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On our way to our next destination, we rolled the windows down to take in the heavenly scent and sight of the endless miles of lavender fields. Nothing can compare to the French countryside in the summertime! We arrived in Gordes, a beautiful village that allowed us to easily enjoy day trips to the nearby enchanting towns of Oppéde, Lacoste, Lourmarin and Saignon.

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Upon leaving Gordes, we made our way to Loire Valley and twirled our way through Château de Chenonceau. After exploring the gardens and inside the castle, we rented a row boat and paddled under the château’s arches - truly a day from a dream. With Bastille Day approaching, we had no choice but to return to Paris. Our final day in France was spent wandering through Tuileries and Luxembourg Gardens, enjoying steak frites at L'Entrecôte de Paris and taking in the grand Bastille Day fireworks show over the Eiffel Tower. Au revoir, mon amour! ...Until next time.

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Photographs by Hannah Alyssa Film scanned by Richard Photo Lab