France is a beautiful country that is comprised of wonderful landmarks, a buzzing culture and an awesome cuisine. Now, it’s also a country that is blessed with an abundance of lovely, friendly people. No matter what region you head to, you’ll no doubt be welcomed with open arms.
For some tourists, though, they only want to visit cities that have a lot to offer. That’s why we’ve compiled the largest cities in France by population, so you know you’ll have a great time there…
10) Lille – 227,533
Those who frequently utilize the Eurostar will refer to Lille as the “stop on the journey to Brussels”, but it’s much, much more than that. For many, it’s loved because it’s kept to its roots of being a market town.
If you really want to experience that, then head to Wazemmes Market and sample the fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as clothes, furniture and everything in between.
9) Bordeaux – 239,399
Since 2007, the city has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and that means it’s full of interesting culture and things to see. One of the first places you should visit is the Place de la Bourse, which includes an unforgettable reflecting pool.
Moreover, you’ll also have the Bordeaux Cathedral, Tour Pey Berland and Grand Theatre to check out.
8) Montpellier – 264,538
Did you know that the University of Montpellier is one of the oldest universities across the globe, having been opened by William VII back in 1289? Well, that’s the sort of fact that sums up Montpellier.
It’s jam-packed with history, as well as fantastic things to do so you can create as many memories as possible. For instance, there’s a selection of art museums that are some of the best France has to offer.
7) Strasbourg – 272,222
Due to its close proximity to the German border, there is plenty of German influence throughout the city’s architecture. But, one thing that remains completely French is the Notre-Dame cathedral, which is absolutely colossal in Strasbourg.
One thing to notice about this region is its cleanliness; you’ll struggle to find any imperfections whatsoever.
6) Nantes – 287,845
Right at the mouth of the River Loire, you’ll find Nantes, which offers a shed-load of brilliant things to do. If you’re someone that has a passion for history, then you’ll love the Chateau des ducs de Bretagne.
Alternatively, maybe you’re some that loves a bit of shopping? In that case, head to the Passage Pommeraye, which is a 19th century mall!
5) Nice – 344,064
Considering this is the capital of the Cote d’Azur, you shouldn’t be shocked to learn it prides itself of glitz and glamour. The gorgeous beaches and the bright-blue sea is complemented perfectly by the high-end restaurants and stunning scenery.
If you really want to appreciate Nice in all its glory, then stroll up to Castle Hill for a mesmerizing view across the region.
4) Toulouse – 447,340
Despite having quite a large population, Toulouse is often overshadowed by some of the other bigger tourist destinations. But, that’s a magnificent thing, because it means the local culture hasn’t been drowned out.
It’s a stunning place to go, and the multitude of pale coloured buildings earnt Toulouse the “Pink City” moniker. Yes, the architecture, art museums and history are important, but the aerospace industry is booming there right now.
3) Lyon – 491,268
There are plenty of reasons to visit Lyon, other than its deep population. Not only is it a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to the array of architectural landmarks, it’s also established itself as the modern capital of gastronomy.
You’ll absolutely love immersing yourself in the historical culture that is attached to Lyon. There’s a plethora of things to do, though; you’ll find the Parc de la Tete d’or, the Vieux Lyon and many food places.
2) Marseille – 850,636
Marseille is a massive port city; one that has retained plenty of its old charm, while ensuring that it’s kept up with the times. You’ll just thrive off of the vibrant atmosphere, believe us.
Especially at the Vieux Port, which still remains the focal point of the city, and for good reason too. If you’re looking for some adventure, then why not check out the Marseille Cathedral, Palais Longchamp or Calanques National Park?
1) Paris – 2,249,975
Being the capital city and often celebrated for its romance, it’s no surprise that Paris is the largest French city. Not only do you have the renowned Eiffel Tower, amazing restaurants and fun places to visit, you also have a bustling culture to delve into.
Choose from Disneyland Paris, the Louvre or Notre-Dame to fill out your days. You’ll literally never get bored and will most likely plan to return as soon as possible!
There you have it! The 10 largest French cities by population. Although it’s hard to say which cities are the best to visit, it’s hard to go wrong with these ten. Although these 10 cities are the largest in France, which cities have you visited or would you like to visit? Comment below and tell us all about them.
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