Jessi Turnure

Multimedia Journalist

Europe’s Hidden Secrets: The France Edition

This week’s secret: Montpellier, France.

Montpellier, located in France’s south coast on the Mediterranean Sea and with a population of 265, 000, is the eighth largest city in the country.

Here’s five reasons to put Montpellier on your vacation wish list:

1. The weather.

Montpellier is a tropical paradise almost year round. During the winter months, the lowest temperature is about 40 F and during the summer, the high is about 85 F. How perfect is that?

2. The French cuisine.

French Crepe

Duck Pate

Steak Tartare

If you plan on visiting Montpellier, and really any where in France, you need to come with an open mind. Some of the best food I’ve ever had was food I never thought I would try. In Montpellier, the most unique dishes I tried were duck pate (a French delicacy, also known as foie gras: a duck liver with a rich, buttery flavor), steak tartare (a raw meat dish made from finely chopped or minced raw beef with seasonings) and caviar.

3. The shopping.

Place de la Comedie

The city center, Place de la Comedie, contains a plethora of intriguing stores and restaurants. Visitors can find anything from designer clothing to knickknacks to specialty foods and wines.

4. The sights.

Exercise equipment in local parks

In the heart of Montpellier, almost everything is in walking distance and there’s so much to see. The city has several unique parks like the one above that contains exotic plants from all over the world. It also has many awesome sculptures like the one above and even has its own Arc de Triomphe (just like every city in Europe it seems). And maybe the last picture is why Europeans are typically thinner than Americans?

5. The proximity

Palavas Beach

Palavas Beach Pier

Pic Saint Loup

Palavas Beach and Pic Saint Loup (Peak San Lou) are two of the main attractions in Montpellier and both are less than 40 minutes away by car. Palavas Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches on the Mediterranean Sea with plenty of activities for people of all ages, such as camping, surfing and snorkeling. Pic Saint Loup offers visitors a bird’s eye view of the entire city and houses some of the most beautiful wineries in the world.

Stay tuned! Next week’s secret comes from Belgium!

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