If you are looking for a Christmas present for someone who is planning a trip to France in 2016, or if you are coming to France with your other half and want to buy them something for Christmas that you’ll both enjoy (a total win-win!), here are 10 perfect ideas for you.
The FMH team all agree that books relating to travelling through or discovering the country you are planning to visit make great Christmas presents, so here are our top ten choices:
1. French Wine (published by Dorling Kindersley)
2. French Cheese (published by Dorling Kindersley)
These comprehensive but compact guides make easy work of discovering local wines and cheeses as you travel through France.
3. English/French phrase book – any make will do but we like the Lonely Planet French Phrase Book and Dictionary.
4. Maps or an atlas. These are great for trip planning and invaluable for anyone driving in France. If you are not sure which region/s of France the person you are buying for is going to visit, it’s probably best to stick to a national map or atlas, but regional maps offer a great deal more detail so go for those if they are just visiting one area. We think the Michelin maps and atlases are particularly good in France.
5. Narrow Dog to Carcassonne by Terry Darlington (Bantam Books). This book has been around for quite some years now and you might have to consider a second-hand copy if you can’t find a new one but it’s worth it! A really funny insight into the adventures of an English couple who cross The Channel and head through France on a narrow boat with their dog. Particularly suitable for anyone planning a long trip to France as they will enjoy Terry Darlington’s candid and often hilarious observations about France and the French way of life. It starts with, “We could bore ourselves to death, drink ourselves to death, or have a bit of an adventure….”
6. Wild Swimming France by Daniel Start. Discover the most beautiful rivers, lakes and waterfalls of France, most of which you would never find without this book!
7. The Campervan Cookbook by Martin Dorey (also published by Salt Yard Book Co). This brilliant recipe book is stacked with recipes for campervan cooks. With recipes designed to work on a two-ring hob in an ancient VW camper, they are a doddle in a modern motorhome or camper and it’s a lovely looking book too so makes a great gift.
8. The Best Loved Villages of France by Stéphane Bern. A beautiful and inspirational book highlighting over 40 great villages to explore across France.
9. Michelin Guide France. Probably the world’s most famous restaurant guide with 4,300 restaurant recommendations, all selected by the team of independent Michelin inspectors for quality of food and service.
10. Back Roads France (published by Dorling Kindersley). Twenty-five themed drives, each lasting one to seven days, reveal breath-taking views, hidden gems and authentic local experiences that can only be discovered by road.