Favourite French Areas for Expats
Recent surveys might indicate that nations like Australia, Canada and the United Arab Emirates are becoming more popular with expats than traditional European boltholes, but France is still holding a prominent position in most lists of top locations for emigration.
Property might not be as reasonably priced as it once was, and the employment sector might be struggling, but France still has plenty to offer – whether you’re a young professional looking for an international lifestyle, an expat family looking for a safe environment, or of a certain age and searching for that perfect place to retire.
While many posts focus on France’s many glorious and bustling major cities, we’ve decided to take a more rural approach and discuss the quieter areas expats favour!
Auxerre – Burgundy
This commercial and industrial area is famed for producing Burgundy wine and having an artistic and historic vibe. At only an hour and a half from Paris, Auxerre is conveniently located and blends a modern infrastructure with hundreds of years of architecture. A great option for young professional expats or emigrating families.
Juan Les Pins – Cote d’Azur
This picturesque village is perfect for young professionals who like to play as hard as they work. Nightclubs, glorious beaches and casinos are the area’s main claim to fame, and it has excellent transport links, being just 13km from the Nice Cote d’Azur airport.
Saint Gaudens in Haute – Garonne
If you’re hoping to retire in a beautiful, historic location, or want to raise your children in a quiet town with a traditional community feel, this could be it. Stunning architecture, cobbled streets and a striking view of the Pyrenean Mountains give the town an old-world feel, while modern amenities and its close proximity to Toulouse ensure that you have easy access to everything you need.
Val-d’lsere – Rhone-Alpes Region
Due to its connection to the 1992 winter Olympics and popularity as a ski resort, sporty expats will love Val-d’lsere. Other major plus points are the area’s quaint chalet architecture, its easy distance to both Lyon and Geneva, and its breathtaking surroundings.
Over the last few years Limoges has become increasingly popular with international expats due to its comparatively reasonable property prices and living costs. Despite testing times nationally, Limoges’ economy is doing pretty well and the picturesque country environment, mild climate and range of cultural sites all add to its manifold attractions.
Are you an expat living in France? Is there an area of the nation you’d particularly recommend? Or somewhere you don’t feel is suited to expat living?
Let us know on Facebook and Twitter, or start up a conversation in The Expat Hub forum!