As part of the Mandiri Private Luxury Trip “A Path to Unforgettable Italy-France” with Mandiri Private Banking to Europe held a while ago, after Milan and Monaco, our one-of-kind luxury Europe vacation led us to France. We discovered six cities in this country, including Nice, Grasse, Cannes, Lyon, Beaune, to reach our final destination: Paris.
Indonesia Tatler, together with 24 loyal Mandiri Private Banking customers, really enjoyed all the privileges in experiencing this visit to France venturing to six cities in five days. Because there are so many wonderful things to do and see in France, it can be overwhelming trying to narrow down the best selections for your trip.
So we have narrowed down a few of our favourites, which we recommend for your trip. Gear up yourself with stylish shoes, coats, shawls, and shades to blend in with the fashionable crowd and follow this itinerary!
Stroll along the Promenade des Anglais in Nice
Nice was a one-night stopover for us before we headed to another destination, but we still managed to pass along the beautiful palm-lined seafront of Promenade des Anglais. So, when in Nice, don't miss a stroll by the sea with its beautiful views over the Baie des Anges (Bay of Angels).
You can walk along the beach or observe people from the beach chairs; this spot has amazing views with so many cafes and restaurants at which to chill. From here, you can enjoy easy access to all the lively city has to offer. You can also relax and rent a bike to enjoy the city, and if you have more time, see the popular flower market or flea market in the old town.
Explore the capital of perfume in Grasse
Some of you have maybe visited France several times, but if you want to try a different experience, why not visit Grasse? Grasse is widely known as the perfume capital of the world and is home to dozens of fragrance companies—it may well be the sweetest-smelling city in Europe. So, what to see in Grasse? The top sights are undoubtedly its perfume factories.
We spent one day in Grasse and had the chance to join the guided tour at one of the most popular and oldest factories, the Parfumerie Galimard. This tour includes an overview of the history of perfume making, and how the scents are made, also a visit to a gift shop where we can purchase fragrance products. If visiting Grasse in the spring or summer, you’ll likely have the option to explore one of the nearby gardens or fields that contain the local flowers.
Delve into the glamour of Cannes
Next up, our journey took us to Cannes, home of the Cannes Film Festival. This is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities of southern France and we enjoyed a day of strolling leisurely through the main streets, with all their lush palm trees, high-end boutiques, and beautiful people and beaches.
You can also enjoy this city by strolling the beach and admiring the dozens of luxurious yachts and sailboats: Cannes surely combines glamour with opulence. And if you have more time to spend in Cannes, walk to the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, where the eponymous film festival takes place and view the famous steps with the red carpet.
Witness a beautiful sunrise in Lyon
For those of you who want to avoid overcrowded Paris or the French Riviera, the dynamic and vibrant city of Lyon would be a perfect destination. We were only in Lyon for one night and left early in the morning for another destination, so if you’re like us and only have a short time in Lyon, you can devote your morning to see the beautiful sunrise.
Head up to the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, a church with a nice view overlooking the city. Try to go to see a sunrise from this spot, which offers an awesome experience. If you have more time, you can also visit the remarkably well-preserved Roman amphitheatre or hang out in the hippest area in Lyon: Croix Rousse.
Taste fine wine in Beaune
Home to some of the finest wines in the world, Beaune, the Burgundy wine capital famous for its grapes and wines, is also a must-visit during any trip to in France, especially for wine lovers. Here, you can join a wine tour to experience authentic wine tasting, where local experts will walk you through cellars, and you can learn all about the winery’s unique wine-making techniques.
We also visited one of the wineries, Domaine Roy, with a tour through the cellars and workshops, where the guide explained to us how he works, prepares his harvest, and raises his wines. After that, we browsed their wine selection, and have a guided tasting, before we ended our session and ate a local lunch at a small nearby restaurant. Fun and educational!
Perfect shopping day in Paris
Of course, no visit to The City of Light is complete without shopping! For you who want to indulge in retail therapy, other than shopping at the glitzy Champs-Elysées, we would also recommend shopping time at Marne La Vallée at La Vallée Village, an outlet shopping experience with local and global luxury brand names and authentic last-season items at discount rates, which shouldn't be missed by luxury travellers.
In addition, we also had a great shopping time with a personal shopper service and the privilege of VIP access at Galeries Lafayette Haussmann. This service includes tax registration, the all-important bag carrying, and in-the-know purchasing tips. A perfect Paris shopping day!
Other than shopping, why not try the unique experience of discovering the city via a classic car ride? You can see Paris from the vantage point of a vintage vehicle, ending up at the Eiffel Tower to take the mandatory group picture. Don’t forget to also spend an unforgettable evening to watch a spectacular Lido de Paris cabaret on the Champs-Elysées. This burlesque show, with all of its glitz, glamour and fabulous costumes, was also one of the highlights of our trip!
Photo credit: Dewi Irma, Thinkstock, Pixabay, France 24, Thousand Wonders, BK Wine Tours