The Alsace region, on the Eastern edge of the country, has seesawed between French and German control for centuries. Its capital, Strasbourg, is an intriguing blend of both influences—as reflected in its architecture, culture, and cuisine. Grand Île, its UNESCO-listed central island, surrounded by the Ill River and the Faux-Rempart Canal, is home to the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Strasbourg, with its Gothic edifice and animated astronomical clock. Don’t leave without experiencing a winstub (a tavern serving traditional Alsatian eats, including the do-not-miss tarte flambee).
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The French Riviera isn’t lacking in hotspots, but nowhere sizzles quite like Saint-Tropez. This hedonistic haven—made iconic by sex symbol Brigitte Bardot—has attracted international jetsetters and glitterati since the 1960s. In the decades to follow, its clothing-optional beaches, upscale resorts (Pan Deï Palais and Hôtel de Paris Saint-Tropez are top picks), ritzy yachts, and lively nightclubs have become a playground for the rich and famous. If you’re looking for Champagne-fueled fun and fabulous celeb spotting, Saint-Tropez is for you.