I have been to France multiple times, and throughout my experiences there, I have gathered a list of tips that helped me and will hopefully help you if you ever decide to visit!
- It’s okay if you don’t speak French
It’s okay if you don’t speak French – Although I would recommend learning enough French to understand what is going on, don’t let a lack of understanding stop you from visiting! The first time I was exposed to the French language was when I traveled there for the first time. Being immersed in the French language and culture is very helpful for the language learning process. French people appreciate it when you try to learn their language, but most people will be happy to speak English with you. In my experience, many people asked me to practice English with them and help them correct their grammar, but everyone’s experience is different. Remember, French people aren’t rude unless you are.
- Beware of pickpockets
I believe that your encounter with pickpockets would be different depending on what city you travel to. But if you are in a large, tourist-filled area like Paris, you always need to keep a lookout. I would recommend bringing a crossbody bag or another kind of bag that you can keep close to you at all times.
- GO to places that aren’t well known to tourists
If you want to fully experience French culture, try going to places that aren’t specifically catered to tourists. If you feel comfortable, try going around the city by yourself instead of with a tour group. This way, you will be able to find places that you never would have seen in a tour group. If you are in Paris, I recommend stopping at one of the many parks in the city. Many locals and tourists both spend time in the parks, making it a great place to see all kinds of people in France.
- Go to the tourist areas
Although I personally prefer the small shops and cafes without tourists, I think that it is still important to visit big tourist sites like the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, and the Palace of Versailles. Although they tend to be much more crowded, they are an important part of the French traveling experience.
- Get comfortable with public transportation
In most of Europe, and especially in France, public transportation is very accessible and easy to navigate. Once you understand the maps and routes of the metro and the trains, it is easy to get anywhere. Having knowledge of the public transportation systems will help you take advantage of everything during your time in France!
I hope these tips will help you, and I hope you get a chance to visit the beautiful country of France!
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