France truly shines at Christmas! Every town and village is lit up with beautiful decorations. Shops and streets are decorated with charming windows displays and you the best of French cuisine is available no matter where you go. Oyster, foie gras, champagne and gourmet chocolates are part of local traditions as well as charming Christmas markets, local festivals and many other attractions for children as well as adults.
When organizing a trip to France during the Christmas holidays you have to visit these three hot spots:
- Lyon, for its “Fête des lumières” (lights festival)
- Paris for the Christmas lights, shopping windows and markets
- Nantes for its magical sound and light show in front of the cathedral
The Festival of Lights (Fête des Lumières) takes place in the beautiful city of Lyon from Thursday 8th of December to Saturday 10th. Starting from 8PM you can admire beautiful light and sound installations all around the city.
This Festival is a rendez-vous you can’t miss if you’re around: started in 1850, it now showcases nearly 80 artistic projects with 184 artists, and 76 places that are completely made up with new lights, stories and ambiances.
Guess which is our favorite one? It’s called Luminex and it’s placed just round the corner from our stunning Radisson Blu Hotel Lyon. It consists of a huge (4.5 meters high) light tower, made by 420 lights; which change in color, frequency and pattern to create thousands of different experiences.
To help celebrate this important event, our Radisson Blu Hotel in Lyon will light up its pyramid with a special pattern.
Talking about Christmas lights, Paris is definitely a must see.
Starting from November 21st, the famous Champs Elysées’ lights will be turned on and the Christmas market will be ready to welcome you. You could find the perfect French gifts or enjoy a yummy break. Do you know the Christmas market in Paris is the biggest market in Europe?
Paris is famous also for its shopping center’s Christmas decorations. Galleries Lafayette or Printemps windows will charm both the kids and their parents. Animated dolls, a magical atmosphere and twinkling Christmas light, will transport you into the French Christmas feeling.
This year, Nantes’ cathedral will be the scene of a dazzling transformation. Between 23 and 30 December, you will have the chance to admire a beautiful sound and light show displayed on the cathedral’s façade: “L’Odyssées des Rêves”, based on “Noah's Ark” by Alain Thomas.
Radisson Blu Hotel Nantes will also be transported into Alain Thomas’s magical world: an exhibition with a selection of hi works wildecorate and illuminate the hotel throughout the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Before leaving, don’t forget to do some Christmas shopping: Nantes, Lyon and Paris will offer you the best of the French style… and of course of the French cuisine!