More About Franche Comte

Traditional style gites in Franche Comte are scattered around the superb countryside, allowing for unrestricted access to the wonderful scenic activities on offer here. It isn’t just about the great outdoors here though, there is plenty to do and see in the towns and cities in the east of France. The advantages of choosing a holiday cottage in Franche Comte include being able to set your own agenda at your own pace, having a base for family and friends to meet and relax at any time of the day, and also for having a wealth of facilities at your disposal for a truly French experience. Make the most of the local produce – fabulous foods and wines – in your very own self catering accommodation and local markets, and don’t forget to spare a little time for trying out some locally produced wines!

Franche-Comte Cottages & Gites

The rolling green hills and pine forests of Franche Comte in the east of France are perhaps some of the country’s best kept secrets, where both tranquillity and fun activities are never very far away. Since the region shares a border with Switzerland, it has lots in common in terms of food, architecture and culture – giving a thoroughly European feel that sets it apart from much of the rest of the country. For lovers of both history and the outdoors, Franche-Comte has lots and lots to offer – so why not visit and see for yourself.

Things to Do in Franche Comte

Franche Comte is not endowed with a great many cities but that’s part of the region’s charm. It's communities are especially rich in history and things to do. The main city and capital is Besançon, which was France’s first ‘green city’ and has been blessed with the UNESCO World Heritage honour. Belfort, the home of the Statue of Liberty’s architect, Frédéric Bartholdi, offers lots of museums and a fascinating old town. The Château de Montbéliard (the castle of the Dukes of Württemberg) is the main attraction of Montbéliard, while Dole on the western side of Franche Comte is significant as the old capital of the region – until Louis XIV conquered the area. In amongst these charming towns and cities though, you’ll find tranquil hillsides, green forests and rivers a plenty!

Franche Comte Attractions

We want you to enjoy the best that Franche-Comte has to offer and so here's a selection of our favourite things to see and do;

Besancon Citadel

Offering fantastic views over the old quarter of Besançon city, Besançon Citadel has long been one of the big attractions in the region. You can easily while away many hours exploring the old ramparts of this impressive structure, but you’ll also find a selection of interesting museums, including a zoo, an insectarium, a noctarium, an aquarium, vivariums, a climatorium, botanical gardens, a pedagogical exhibit on evolution and a children's farm! You may well find yourself coming back the next day to finish it all off!

Royal Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans

Salt was big business in 18th Century France, and you get a real sense of that when you visit the Royal Saltworks of Arc-et-Senans. Unfortunately, the full plans for the saltworks were never completed, but what was finished is most impressive. The central building and surrounding saltworks structures house a number of fascinating exhibits, both historical and artistic. If it’s too warm to spend a lot of time in these buildings, however, we recommend spending some time in the beautifully landscaped gardens that surround it: Probably the favoured option for younger visitors!

Jura Mountains Regional Natural Park

The influence of the Alps and Switzerland are never very far away in Franche Comte, and we think any visit to the region should include a trip to the Jura Mountains Regional Natural Park. There are plenty of planned summer and winter activities to enjoy in the park, many especially focused on maintaining traditional artistic and agricultural activities in the area. But the real draw are the great views offered by these mountains – and even if you don’t feel particularly fit when you come here, there are plenty of gentler walks and hikes to enjoy. Don’t forget your hiking boots!

Read More [+]