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Where to live the good life in France

House with blue shutters and roses growing over the door typical French house style

When it comes to living in France, there’s lots to tempt you. Wandering through a picture-perfect medieval village, sitting at a café with a coffee and croissant watching the world go by, an early morning stroll on a sandy beach, or watching the sun set over a craggy mountain. Sunshine, great food and wine, a slower pace of life and culture galore. The healthcare is superb and the street markets are a way of life. What’s not to love. The only difficulty is choosing where to go.

We asked property agent Patrick Joseph of My French House to share some of his favourite places for those dreaming of life in France…

Property for sale Cotes d’Azur / French Riviera

View over Villefranche-sur-Mer, a seaside resort along the French Riviera

Sun, sea and a super laid back lifestyle can be found on the Cote d’Azur/French Riviera. This area is famous for its luxury villas with infinity pools, prestige homes and exclusive apartments in famous seaside resorts such as Cannes, Nice, Antibes, Saint Tropez, Eze, Villefranche-sur-Mer and Menton. “You’ll also find delightful character stone homes in magical places such as Seillans or Fayence a bit further inland” says Patrick.

There’s plenty to fall in love with in the area. Pretty perched villages with cobbled streets, vineyards, beaches and glorious countryside. But it’s the sun, relaxed quality of life and outdoor lifestyle that really lures expats.

From Cannes and Nice by the sea, all the way up to Var inland – there’s a wide range of property available here and something to suit everyone, including a surprising number of affordable homes, even in some of the most alluring hotspots.
Properties for sale Cote d’Azur/French Riviera

Property for sale in Normandy

View over Mont Saint Michel in Normandy, sheep on the grassy plains in front of it

“Normandy offers great value and is easy to reach from the UK” says Patrick. The countryside and climate of Normandy is often compared to Devon or Cornwall in southern England, though the French side gets around 20% more sunshine per year.

Lush countryside peppered with villages, endless beaches and charming seaside towns. A long history that’s intrinsically linked to the UK – William the Conqueror came from Normandy, Richard the Lionheart ruled over the area when he inherited it in the 12th century and of course D-Day. The roads are traffic-free, there are street markets in almost every town and plenty of chateaux to visit, cycling routes and hiking trails. Normandy is also famous for its food – from dairy products and cheese, to sea food and cider.

There are five departments within the region of Normandy though Patrick reports that Manche, home to Mont-Saint-Michel and Calvados with its long coast line, D-Day beaches, museums and the historic capital city of Caen, are the two most popular. “There’s a huge choice of property for sale here” says Patrick. “Stone and half-timbered houses, character cottages, farms, mansions and properties with income are plentiful in Normandy.”

And, though it may be often likened to Devon in the UK, you’ll find it offers affordable prices and a  laid back lifestyle.
Properties for sale in Normandy

Property for sale in South West France – Occitanie

Carcassonne, medieval citadel with pointed towers and castellated stone walkways in south west France

There are two main regions in the southwest (known as le grand sud-ouest): Occitanie and New Aquitaine. The region of Occitanie (formerly known as Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées) is a land of plenty. Plenty of wide open spaces, beautiful towns, glorious countryside, coastal villages, wonderful beaches, vineyards, lakes and forests. This area has it all. It includes the departments of Gers A.K.A. Gascony, Tarn, Aude, Tarn-et-Garonne, Ariege, Haute Garonne and Haute-Pyrénées.

Glorious countryside, mountains and skiing in the winter months. The stunning beaches of Aude. The historic citadel of Carcassonne. You’ll never run out of places to fall in love with in southwest France that’s for sure.

And when it comes to properties, you’ll find a huge choice. Says Patrick “from castles to villas, character stone houses to charming cottages, manor houses and farmhouses and heaps more.”

With plenty of sunshine and excellent transport links to the area. A laid-back lifestyle, great gastronomy and fabulous wines. This is an area that has a lot to offer for permanent moves, second homes and gite businesses.
Property for sale in southwest France

Get in touch with Patrick of My French House. Bilingual property agents/immobilliers with property for sale all over France. Discover your dream home in France – and start your journey to living the good life.

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