For those of you trying to plan a fun vacay this summer, we have just the thing for you!
Montpellier, a beautiful city in the south of France is exactly what you need to relax, have fun, and explore at the same time!
This relatively small french city is part of the Languedoc – Roussillon department, close to Spain and Italy. Its amazing architecture, dating from the 16th century (and even before), combined with its beautiful beaches and young population (due to the big number of universities in the area) will guarantee an unforgettable trip!
How to get there!
Once you land in Paris, you have two options as to how to get to Montpellier ; by train or by plane.
Although taking a one hour flight might seem like the perfect, and easiest option, we strongly recommend you take the train (or TGV in french).
Both flight and train can be done directly from the Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris, you just have to find the corresponding platform. Tickets can also be booked online in advance for both of your options.
Taking the train might seem very tiring, afterall its a 4-hour ride, but the scenery you will be enjoying until you reach your destination is absolutely breathtaking. Getting out of Paris, the train will stop shortly in Marne-la-Vallee-Chessy (for Disneyland fans) and then head towards Lyon, Valence, Nimes and then reach its final destination, Montpellier!
Stepping off the train
Congratulations! You’re officially in Montpellier, in Gare Saint Roch – the train station’s name – and your journey is about to begin!
Take a look outside, you’ll see the city’s beautiful 19th century buildings and the tram lines passing by right in front of you! You can get practically anywhere with the tram so jump on it, it will also give you a chance to see some parts of the city before you really start exploring on your own!
Going out in Montpellier
So many things to do, so little time! Montpellier has everything you need for a great night out! Amazing little restaurants in the heart of the historic centre, some fancy restaurants with a huge wine list a few meters away, jazz bars, cool pubs, modern clubs, and hundreds of cafes anywhere you go!
The Place Saint Roch offers all of the above, and with an extra special bonus… the cute little stores and boutiques for some shopping, and the ice cream places and creperies for those who were eager to try out the original french crepes!
The Place de la Comedie, a few meters away, is probably the most famous square in Montpellier! The opera house, the stores and the well known Corum – Montpellier’s massive Conference centre, are all there.
The beauty of this city is that you can get basically everywhere on foot. You might be walking in Comedie and then, out of nowhere, realizing that you’ve reached the Botanical Garden (Jardin des Plantes) or the famous School of Medicine (Faculte de Medecine) and the Anatomy Museum, dating from the 13th century!
Massive and beautiful, the architecture of Montpellier’s School of Medicine will amaze you and you’ll keep wondering how it still operates as a university and it hasn’t been converted into a well guarder museum!
For those who need something more modern, or really want to go shopping, there are two big malls in Montpellier. The first is in Place de la Comedie, called Polygone, and the other, Odysseum, can be reached by tram. Odysseum is also close to Montpellier’s famous aquarium, Planet Ocean.
The aquarium is definitely a place to visit, even for those who aren’t huge fans of the sea world! From exotic fish to penguins and sharks, this place has everything one might only have seen on TV!
Go to the beach! Montpellier is known for its sandy beaches with their cool bars playing music throughout the day, and night! Again, you can get there by tram and the choices are broad! La Grande-Motte, Carnon, Palavas-Les-Flots, and Sete are some of the most known beaches in the area.. Just pick one! Or two!
Go wine tasting! You’re in the country of wine, you HAVE TO taste the french wine! And what better way to do it than go wine tasting in one of the most beautiful chateaux of the area, Chateau de Flaugergues! This beautiful castle with its massive gardens is ideal for couples. You will be getting a tour of the grounds as well as information on the history of the castle, and at the end of the day you get to pick which wines you want to test, and even buy some if you wish!
Take a long walk by the river! Rives du Lez, which crosses the city of Montpellier, offers stunning views during the day and night and many people go there to enjoy the sun, grab a bite or have a drink at the many restaurants and bars around it!
Because Montpellier is actually near the Mediterranean sea, people there enjoy the sun almost all year round. So if you were thinking that France isn’t the ideal destination for your summer holidays, think again! Montpellier is a city that you are bound to fall in love with, and will probably want to revisit!