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Alps

A landscape photo of the Southen French Alps during Fall A view of the Southern French Alps in Fall

The Southern French Alps are gorgeous in summertime, with green meadows, fields of lavender and sunflowers and sparkly lakes. In fall and wintertime, however, the Southern French Alps have an entirely different charm. As the days get darker, people stoke up the fireplaces and the land is covered in a blanket of snow. Before the snow comes, the weather is perfect for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, kayaking and even skydiving. After it starts snowing, usually in December, the Southern French Alps turn into a skiing paradise. Read the entire story here…»

 

Tour de France Logo Tour de France Logo

The country of France owes its prestige abroad to a wide range of images and traditions, from historic landmarks and sexy movie stars to unique scenery and multi-faceted cuisine, but for athletic-minded people, nothing spells summer in France like the internationally famous Tour de France. After some inconspicuous debut in 1903, watching the tour quickly became a favorite past-time for all French generations combined during the month of July. As time went by, the beloved national bicycle race eventually turned into a world-class sporting event steadily drawing a large following all around the world.

This year again, the Tour will take its participants and their supporters through some of the most stunning landscapes of the country. And you too can enjoy the natural beauty of the Alps or the South while catching a glimpse of some of the most popular names in the world of sports. Whether you prefer the quiet majesty of the mountains or the exuberant sunshine of the coastal area, there is no lack of tranquility or excitement. Read the entire story here…»

 

South of France 2-bedroom Chalet in La Salle (PR-10) Picture South of France 2-bedroom Chalet in La Salle (PR-10)

As the weather cools and the leaves change color here, thoughts turn to autumn festivals and harvests.  But not in France.  Home to numerous ski resorts, large and small, local favorites or world-renowned, France is a skier’s paradise and the French relish their ski holidays as much as their long summer vacations. Consider adding a bit of European flair to your next ski outing by visiting some resorts in the South of France and staying in a vacation rental in the French Alps.

Serre Chevalier, located in Briançon in the Southern Alps and near the Parc National des Ecrins (which itself is home to many ski resorts) and the Italian border, is one of the largest resorts in France, if not Europe.  There is a large area for skiing and snowboarding but they also offer many other activities, everything from show-shoeing to relaxing in the thermal baths.  Schedule your visit during one of their many events in order to witness some world-class skiing, a car race in the snow and ice, or the extreme sport of snow-kiting! Read the entire story here…»

 

Gap South of France alps Gap South of France alps

We here at New York Habitat have previously told you about some of the great UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the South of France and now we have two more to add to the list.  Earlier this month, UNESCO named about two dozen new entries to their list, including the Fortifications of Vauban, a group of twelve fortified sites along France’s borders, two of which are located near some great New York Habitat accommodations in the South of France.

Vauban was a famed engineer and architect who worked for Louis XIV, known for both building and improving fortresses and other fortifications on France’s border, as well as developing new way of attacking such buildings.  In total, he worked on over 300 different sites in France, but only 12 have made it onto UNESCO’s list.  The two in the South of France are located in the Alps, along the border between France and Italy. Luckily for you, the Alps offers lots of attractions for the whole family.The larger fortification site can be found in Briançon (also the highest city in Europe!) and includes city walls and numerous smaller forts within them, all available for exploration by the public.  The second site is in Mont-Dauphin, about thirty minutes south of Briançon.  This site has recently undergone restoration and there has been limited residential expansion in the region so the area within the city walls closely resembles life in the seventeenth century. Read the entire story here…»

 

South of France Accommodation: 2 Bedroom Rental in La Salle les Alpes, Southern Alps (PR-10) South of France Accommodation: 2 Bedroom Rental in La Salle les Alpes, Southern Alps (PR-10)

Thinking about hitting the slopes in the French Alps? Or maybe simply relaxing in a traditional chalet set against a backdrop of pristine snowy peaks is more your speed. The French Alps offerplenty of attractions for your fun.

Either way, New York Habitat’s two-bedroom vacation chalet in La Salle, Les Alpes Southern France (PR-10) can provide just the place to take in the stunning mountain scenery. In Serre Chevalier, a ski resort, New York Habitat offers a comfortable chalet that accommodates up to six people.

This two-floor accommodation has a living room on the first floor, furnished with a dining table with matching chairs and room for sleeping thanks to a double sofa bed and two pullout beds. Traditionally paneled in wood, the room features a traditional mountain cabin-style with a cozy ambience. Two large windows give a view of the surrounding snowy scenery.  There are also two bedrooms, one with bunk beds- perfect for children.  The apartment features an open kitchen that is ready for guests to cook. Read the entire story here…»

 

Gap regionLeisurely adventure in a timeless landscape

For many Americans, a French vacation conjures images of famous landmarks, Parisian cafes, and the awareness that not everyone has air conditioning nor prefers ice in their water glass! Part of the enjoyment of foreign travel involves surrendering one’s preferences and habits and welcoming the experience of local customs.

This American has just returned from 10 days in Gap, a provincial seat in Hautes-Alpes, an area of  the French Alps. Gap is located between Briançon and Aix-en-Provence. Returning from the island of Elba in 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte passed through Gap on his way to Briançon, and then on to Paris. In recent years, The Tour de France has passed through Gap several times with cheering spectators lining the route.

Situated in a mountain valley at an altitude of around 733 meters (2400 feet), Gap appears in the distance after a scenic 90 minute ride from Aix. The 100 year-old cathedral spire points skyward, surrounded by terra cotta roofs. Nearby mountains—Ceuzes, Bure, Charrance are easily visible and underline the constantly changing cloud patterns. Read the entire story here…»