Where to Stay in Bordeaux

Hotel Burdigala

  One of France’s larger cities, Bordeaux offers a great selection of ‘where to stay’ options, from five-star hotels to family-friendly B&Bs imbued with Bordeaux’s wine-culture style. Whereas in many areas of France, you cannot find truly luxurious accommodations worthy of the five-star designation, Bordeaux offers a solid selection, and the following list of ‘where to stay’ ... Read Full Article

Dangerous Chateau Castelnaud, in France’s Dordogne Valley

Chateau Castelnaud

  Humans have been developing ingenious ways of killing each other for millennia. Some weapons are simple and brutal while others show a horrifying creativity, but eventually all become quaint museum artifacts. Such are the exhibits in Chateau Castelnaud, a 13th-century fortress high above the Dordogne valley, in France’s Périgord region, now a privately owned museum of medieval ... Read Full Article

Chateau de la Treyne, a French Escape for Romance and Cuisine

Chateau de la Treyne on Dordogne River

Chateau de la Treyne, in southwestern France, is a romantic, fairytale castle in a lovely garden surrounded by forest. My stay there was just about perfect. I’ll try not to gush, but it’s hard not to. I got to play Cinderella and didn’t have to hurry home at midnight. Not until two days later did I step back into the mundane world, and since I was in France it still felt magical. When John and ... Read Full Article

Chateau des Milandes, a World Village in France

sculpture of Josephine Baker in dancer garb

Josephine Baker was a legend in her own time. While she was an accomplished vaudeville dancer and singer, film star, civil rights activist, and spy, she relished her most important role as mother of 12 adopted children from around the world. Their home was Chateau des Milandes, in the Dordogne area of France. Today the chateau is open to the public, and filled with Josephine Baker memorabilia. ... Read Full Article

Discovering Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux pont de Pierre

Bordeaux is a port city on the Garonne River, located in Southwest France. Of course, one of the first things that comes to mind when one hears Bordeaux is wine (have no fear, I will extrapolate on this major part of Bordelaise culture a bit further down). The city of Bordeaux, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, is also home to many historic monuments, gardens, museums and chateaux. What to see ... Read Full Article

Get Away to France’s Arcachon Bay

Carcans Plage

Arcachon, located in the southwest corner of France, was once a wooded Atlantic coastline with just a few huts, endless oyster beds and the biggest sand dune in Europe. That all changed in 1857 when Napolean III christened the town of Arcachon and brought all of the debutantes from Paris and the Cote D'Azur to the Atlantic coast to wait out the winter in peace. Today, this little stretch of beach ... Read Full Article

Breathtaking Biarritz, France

Beautiful Biarritz

Casino lovers, beach bums, shoppers, surfers, golfers, photographers, big spenders, history buffs, art lovers, architecture affectionados, thalassotherapy patients, foodies…Biarritz has something for everyone. Biarritz is located in France’s Basque region, on the Atlantic and at the base of the Aquitaine mountain range. The city’s historical significance stems from the fact that Napoleon ... Read Full Article

Caves of Southwest France


The ancient paintings that are found on cave walls throughout the world could be “the greatest art museum on the planet,” according to the noted French prehistorian Jean Clottes. The richest trove of prehistoric drawings and carvings, some dating back 35,000 years, is in the limestone caves of southwestern France. After visiting several caves, I’m hooked, always looking for more. The ... Read Full Article

Once is Not Enough: Our Stay at Ostapé


On a recent trip to the Basque region of France, we spent one wonderful night at Ostapé, a country inn owned by Catherine Pere-Verge and operated by Alain Ducasse, who grew up in Basque country. We arrived at Ostapé late afternoon in the middle of a rain shower. The rolling hills surrounding the estate of 45 hectares were shining in the rain and suddenly the clouds parted and the sun broke ... Read Full Article

Enjoying the Southwest Region of France

Abbey at Rocamador

  From rolling forests to surfers dream beaches, from spectacular caves to towering gorges; the Southwest's countryside appeal makes it a terrific spot for active, adventurous travelers. Offering ample opportunities for biking, hiking, rock climbing, and horseback riding, this region has it all. With so many off-road retreats, Southwest France comes with a caveat: take it slow! There is ... Read Full Article