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Why This Iconic European Country Looks Set To Be The World’s Top Destination Again In 2024

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It’s unusual for there to be a year when France is not one of the world’s most visited countries.

This historic and iconic European nation has true international appeal, drawing tourists in from near and far each year to see its magnificent cities, its luxurious coastal hideouts, and its rich culture.

And the year 2024 looks like it will be no different.

female traveler outside of mont saint michel in normandy france in summer

New data from the World Travel and Tourism Council and its partner ForwardKeys shows that France looks set to be ‘le king’ of travel again in 2024 – with international arrival figures for the first half of 2024 already at 93% of those in 2019.

Why is France’s popularity as a travel and tourism destination just so unbreakable?

The Pulling Power Of Paris

Despite the fact that France’s most iconic city Paris could well be one to miss this year due to inflated prices and huge crowds expected for the 2024 Olympic Games, it hasn’t stopped droves of tourists making plans to visit.

Recent data shows that hotel occupancy rates for 2023 were far above those of 2019 for more than half of Paris’ hotel classes, while the city has once again been named as one of the top global destinations for this year by the users of popular travel website Tripadvisor.

the eifel tower in paris with a sunset and fall leaves in the foreground

If you do want to avoid those extortionate prices and hordes of tourists from around the world who will descend on the ‘City of Light’ this summer, then consider visiting in winter.

Our travel experts claim that the streets are quieter at this time of year and that many of the city’s romantic locations look great with a winter aesthetic.

Young woman enjoying beautiful landscape view on the riverside from the tourist ship during the sunset in Paris

Cultural Icons Beyond The Capital

It might sound cliched, to borrow a French term, but France really does have a little bit of something for everyone.

If you’re seeking the same historical and cultural thrills of Paris but want to avoid the hustle and bustle, then there are plenty of other fascinating destinations to try.

Bordeaux is a beautiful riverside city dripping with chic that is also at the heart of one of France’s most famous wine regions.

place de la bourse in bordeaux with a female traveler outside

Then there’s Lyon, which lies just a few hours south of Paris where you’ll be able to witness Roman architecture, unique covered passageways, and icons such as the Fourviere Basilica.

And how could we forget the quintessential French experience of traveling along the Cote d’Azur?

This is a place to unlock your inner film star as you hop between glitzy, sun-drenched beauties such as Nice, Cannes, and St. Tropez.

aerial view of a beautiful harbor in nice france cote dazur

Year-Round Appeal

We can all imagine ourselves sauntering around sunny harbors in Marseille, or perhaps enjoying the fresh coastal air of picturesque rural villages in Brittany, but France is not only a summer destination.

In the fall, Normandy is perfect – not only will it be blessed with bright and beautiful colors, but it’s world-famous for amazing cider.  

As for winter, France has more than enough to satisfy. The country has some of the best-regarded skiing destinations in all of Europe within its borders in the French Alps.

fuicular going up a mountain in grenoble in alps region of france

It also has some great mountain towns that are rewarding to explore in the colder months without partaking in winter sports such as Grenoble.

Getting More Connected All The Time

France knows how popular it is as a global destination, and it also knows how important tourism is to its economy.

Because of this, the country is constantly working on ways to make traveling a more pleasant experience for all those who arrive on its shores.

By the Spring of this year, it is expected that you’ll be able to easily get into central Paris from its other airport Orly, which will reduce the stress and busyness at Charles De Gaulle Airport.

There are also nearly always new flights being added to French destinations, which only confirms its endearing popularity.

view of the eifel tower and paris at sunset from a plane window

It’s not just the air that’s connecting France – if you are thinking of traveling around the continent of Europe, you can easily add France to that itinerary thanks to its extensive and ever-increasing railway network.

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

Pamela Shields

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