Friday, April 4, 2008


What doesn't France have? During my recent trip to the French alps, I made sure to ride the ski lift all the way to the top of the runs in order to get a glimpse at Mont Blanc. At approximately 4,810 meters above sea level (15,780 feet for people like me who don't know the first thing about the metric system) it's the tallest mountain in Europe. France lays claim to it by a small margin, as it's right next to the border with Italy. It's truly an amazing sight, and it got me thinking about all the other amazing sights that exist within this relatively small country.

Just think about it: France has the tallest mountain, she has coasts on four bodies of water (the North Sea, the English Channel, the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea), and every kind of landscape, from palm tree-lined beaches to river valleys to mountain ranges lie within her borders. France has Roman ruins, Greek ruins, walled medieval cities and prehistoric cave paintings. She has the world's tallest bridge, the world's most famous tower, and the Mona Lisa, which is arguably the world's most famous painting. She has all this (and more!) tucked into a country that is smaller than Texas.

This is by no means an exhaustive list as it would take a lifetime to do and see all that France has to offer. But there is one more thing worth mentioning. In terms of tourism, France is the most visited country in the world. With all there is to see and experience, is it any wonder l'hexagone holds this title too?

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