Top 10 Fairytale Villages And Small Towns In France To Visit 

Have you ever imagined the feeling of walking along enchanting streets along valleys dotted with fields of vineyards? Imagine walking through the old-style villages where one can easily forget about time! 

Take yourself back to the roads paved with cobblestone that are rimmed with colorful houses having wooden beams and the exuding aroma of flowers. Discover the old castles on the peaks, or dive into the maze of vineyards.

In today’s article I will share 10 of France’s most enchanting villages and small towns. Get ready to explore new places, listen to interesting stories, and feel like a true inhabitant of French fields and farmlands. 

Every village has a unique attraction that lies hidden, waiting to be explored by you.

1. Colmar

Our magic journey begins in Colmar, a tiny charming town located in the French Alsace region with many wine fields. Colmar has earned the nickname “Le Petit Venise” due to its romantic canals. 

Prepare yourself to be astonished when you take a walk through cobblestone streets bordered by bright houses having wooden beams on them.

If you’re a history buff like me, visit the Unterlinden Museum which has a fabulous collection of medieval and Renaissance art.

Must Try Traditional Dish
I would recommend to try the German specialty called Flammekueche (pronounced “flam-koo-kuh”). This mouth-watering dish has a crispy bread crust topped with camembert cheese and onions.

2. Annecy

Annecy is a town lying right in front of the impressive French Alps mountain range. Commonly known as the “Venice of the Alps“, Annecy has water canals making it a mixture of beautiful nature and wonderful city life.

Don’t forget to visit ‘Palais de l’Isle'(Island Palace ) which was a Prison in the 1100s and now it’s a Historic Building.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
To taste the local food, try Tartiflette which is a yummy dish. This warm and rustic dish is prepared with potatoes, bacon, onions, and Reblochon cheese, which is a local and velvety kind of cheese.

3. Carcassonne 

Coming next is Carcassonne, a town in southern France, whose streets are literally from the history books! This perfect spot is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site because of an old castle that was built a long time ago. 

In my opinion, The entire town is enclosed by giant walls and towers of castles, which makes you feel like a real knight or princess.

Be prepared to go up and down the fortifications and the towers that feel like walking on a film’s set! The view from the Château Comtal, an ancient castle, will certainly take your breath away.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
I suggest you try the local food Cassoulet (ca-soo-lay) for the best experience. It is, I would say, a tasty delicacy with white beans, sausages, and meats.

4. Èze

The next destination is Èze (pronounced “ezz”), a village with an idyllic landscape sitting on a cliff overlooking the amazing French coastline. This picturesque village where one can enjoy the sights of the beautiful Mediterranean Sea.

Get ready to contemplate amazing views of Côte d’Azur (French Riviera) among picturesque lanes of local Éze. Walk through the quaint village, stopping by the art galleries, craft shops, and cozy cafes.

I recommend you to visit Jardin Exotique d’Eze (Eze Exotic Garden), which is full of the most amazing collection of cacti and succulents from around the globe.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
In order to daze your tongue, try socca, a mouth-watering savory chickpea pancake which is a local delicacy.

5. Gordes

This village is like a fairytale dream, with small green hills rolling in Provence, an area in the south of France. Picture a town that has been built on the top of a cliff with houses in bright colors of sunshine stone and roads that are cobblestone lined up.

Get ready to be wowed as you walk around Gordes’ little streets, glancing at the delightful houses with flowers on them. Not a château to miss standing on the hill with a view of the whole surrounding.

If you’re wondering about the city’s past, visit the Town Hall (Hôtel de Ville), a majestic building dating back to the 1600s.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
Give a shot to a Calisson which is very tasty local food. It is a provincial dessert flavored with candied fruit and ​almond paste!​

6. Mont Saint-Michel

Then comes Mont Saint-Michel, an island in France with a beautiful tall church on the top. This fantastic place is safeguarded by UNESCO as it is highly ancient and distinct in its kind.

Let’s go for a walk through small streets that feature several stores and cafes. Take the route to the stunning church which was built in medieval times for perfect view of the ocean.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
Want to check out local food? Go for Moules-frites (pronounced as “mool-fruit”). ​

7. Riquewihr

Riquewihr is a village that looks like the dream of a child. This village popularly known as the “Pearl of the Alsace Wine Route” is famous for its tasty wines and rows of colorful houses with tiny wooden beams.

You will be left speechless! Take a walk along the cobblestoned roads sprinkled with eye-catching, vibrant houses covered with flowers.

 Don’t miss the Dolder Tower that is from the 1200s and Maison des Vignerons (Winegrowers House), a famous building from the 1500s.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
I would recommend trying Kougelhopf.  It is a delicious and sweet cake baked in a bread pan that includes raisins and almonds.

8. Roussillon

This little village is nestled in the Provence region in the south of France and it is like none other. there is a clay called ochre which makes all the houses and cliffs mixed with red yellow, and orange colors.

Discover the old ochre mines, which now look like a piece of art with their red rocks and caves. Do not forget to go on Ochre Trail – a walking path passing beautiful, colored rocks with breathtaking views.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
Would you like to try out some delicious local food, please have a bite of Calisson d’Aix. It’s a typical dessert you will find in Provence and it’s flavored with candied fruit and almond paste.

9. Dinan

Dinan! This small town in Brittany, France, is exactly the place where you can breathe the history of the past. Picture a town with huge walls and towers still erect, and stunning wooden houses lined with cobblestone roads.

In my opinion, Go around the 2-mile-long walls stocking the town’s spectacular scenery. Don’t forget to visit the Saint-Malo Church where you can admire the colorful stained glass.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
You should get a Crêpe Bretonne (sounds like “crep bre-ton”). These are very thin pancakes prepared from special flour and cheese.

10. Eguisheim 

Eguisheim is a fairy tale village at first glance. This village is not only named “one of France’s ‘Most Beautiful Villages’, but it is also known for its colorful houses that have wooden beams and narrow streets.

Discover Eguisheim streets adorned with flowers. Don’t forget to stop at the Chapelle Saint-Léon, an 11th-century church with incredibly beautiful panoramic views of the vineyards.

Must Try Traditional Dish 
Try Flammekueche ( flamm-koo-kuh). It tastes great as a savory tart that has a crispy bread crust with cheese, onions, and in some cases some bacon on top.

Final Thoughts

France features a plethora of idyllic villages and towns you can discover. One can find everything ranging from storybook villages full of decorative homes to historic towns lined with medieval castles.

This article took you on a quick look at 10 such places. Now get your bags, strap on your hiking boots, and prepare yourself to feel the beauty and history of France!

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