France: La Vie en Rose Online
Whatever you deem necessary to an unforgettable French holiday, you can find on the Web. Book your flight and a place to stay, research a world-class restaurant or charming French city, and let the Web make your vacation dreams a reality. France has something to suit nearly any interest, so you can wine and dine, laze on a beach, hike and cycle across the quaint countryside, or shop your way through Paris. The choice is yours.
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You won't find the first-person sights, smells, sounds, and emotions of a place in most guidebooks. Whether they describe a vomit-inducing meal or tantalizing stretch of beach, other travelers' accounts are windows into destinations. Try reading a newspaper's travel section online (The New York Times, Washington Post, South Florida Sun Sentinel, and San Francisco Chronicle all have good ones) for archived destination pieces. Blogs and travel narratives delve even deeper.
- User experiences can be highly subjective, so be sure to consult a variety of sources and opinions and don't judge a place too quickly.
- Travel forums are helpful if you want direct feedback and personalized advice from other travelers. Use your discretion before you take someone's advice, however; read their previous posts and try to gain a better sense of their opinions and travel style.
- In the sidebars of most blogs you'll usually find blogrolls, which are lists of links to other blogs. If you like a blog, it might be worthwhile to check out its blogroll for other similarly veined sites.
- Another way to find useful travel blogs is to use a blog-specific search engine such as Technorati or BlogPulse.
- See our findingDulcinea Blog Guide for more advice and information about how to find and use blogs (and even write your own).
For general information about France ...
has a France travel forum where you can post questions and receive answers from France locals and other travelers. There are nearly 1 million members of VirtualTourist, so you can look forward to a diverse selection of replies.
has a forum for travel in France where you can ask questions and receive advice from other travelers. You can also post an online travel diary, with written entries and photos, to make it easier for your friends and family to keep up with your journeys.
brings together several writers to contribute to this France blog. A diverse mix of opinions and a broad spectrum of articles, photos, and France travel anecdotes are included.
For Paris ...
The Paris Blog
is a group effort by more than two dozen expatriates living in Paris. Entries are thoughtful and wide-ranging, and are separated into themes such as Family and Politics. Especially insightful are entries listed in "The French" section, which focuses on cultural differences between France and America. Photos, videos, and illustrations add flavor.
The Paris Traveler
is the voice of an American woman living in the City of Lights. She gives lively cultural commentary with helpful insider scoops, like how to park your car in Paris and where to take a cooking class. Scroll down and to the right for a long list of subtopics that will take you from "Interesting Locals" to "Performing Arts." The "Travel Tips" category is especially helpful.
is a BootsnAll Network blog written by travel and food writer Chris Card Fuller. Discussions of current events and life in Paris in a friendly, encouraging voice are supplemented by tips and advice.
For blogs about food and eating in France ...
Rick Steves' Web site
has a forum called "Food Lovers' France," where travelers can post comments related to food and restaurants in France. Read posts for names and addresses of eateries, as well as for unusual tips, including "Paris for picky eaters."
Chocolate and Zucchini
is a charming blog written by Clotilde Dusoulier, a Parisian with an insatiable love for food and cooking. She shares recipes, tips, and anecdotes about restaurants, chefs, and all things cuisine in Paris and beyond in a girl-next-door kind of way.
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