When most people think about planning a trip to France, Paris is usually at the top of their list.
Of course, the City of Lights is a must, but there are so many other wonderful cities in France.
One of these is Nantes, located in western France near the Loire and Erdre Rivers.
Nantes is a city that’s rich in history and simultaneously modern. One only need take a stroll around Nantes to find architectural reminders of this rich history, including charming slanted buildings that survived WWII.
However, it’s also easy to find many modern elements, like the rental bike (“bicloo”) stations that can be found throughout the city.
What to do in Nantes, France:
France is known for its open air and covered markets, and Nantes certainly has an impressive one. Marché de Talensac (Place de Talensac) is a large covered market that is open everyday (except Monday). Here you can buy anything your foodie heart desires, including fresh bread and fish, fruits and veggies, artisanal cheese, tasty patisseries, or marinated olives. Pick up a picnic lunch from the market before heading for a walk through the Japanese gardens at the Ile de Versaille (10 min from Talensac) and then taking a stroll along the Erdre River.
The LU (http://www.lelieuunique.com/) is a former cookie factory (makers of the delicious Petit Écolier – little school boy— butter cookies with chocolate on top) that’s been converted into bar, restaurant, concert space, gallery, and bookstore. One of the original factory’s towers is still (safely) standing and offers an impressive panoramic view of the city for only 2€.
Take a ride on one of the “Bateaux Nantais,” tourist boats that run down the Erdre River. Opt for a nighttime ride so you can enjoy the city lights and unique ambiance.