120+ Inspiring Travel Quotes About France

If you’re looking for beautiful travel quotes about France (in English), you’ve come to the right place. I, too, am obsessed with wanderlust-fueling quotes, and this is the ultimate list that will make any Francophile’s travel feet itch. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

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120+ Best France travel quotes about France (including quotes about Paris, Provence, and more)


“I woke up one time coming out of a blackout, and I was on an airplane, descending to land in Charles de Gaulle Airport in France. And all I can think is I must have decided it was a good idea to go to France, and got my passport, and got on a plane.” – Joe Walsh

“In England, football is a religion. In France, football is not a religion. It’s wine and food.” – Robert Pires

“Other countries drink to get drunk, and this is accepted by everyone; in France, drunkenness is a consequence, never an intention. A drink is felt as the spinning out of a pleasure, not as the necessary cause of an effect which is sought: wine is not only a philter, it is also the leisurely act of drinking.” – Roland Barthes

“I had come to the conclusion that I must really be French, only no one had ever informed me of this fact. I loved the people, the food, the lay of the land, the civilized atmosphere, and the generous pace of life.” – Julia Child

Julia Child quote about France

“In France, cooking is a serious art form and a national sport.” – Julia Child

“France is the most civilized country in the world and doesn’t care who knows it.” – John Gunther

“Everything ends this way in France — everything. Weddings, christenings, duels, burials, swindlings, diplomatic affairs — everything is a pretext for a good dinner.” – Jean Anouilh

“In France you cannot not have lunch. If you stopped the French from having lunch, you will have a second revolution, I can tell you this. Not going to work – it is part of the French privilege.” – Christian Louboutin

“In France we have a saying, ‘Joie de vivre,’ which actually doesn’t exist in the English language. It means looking at your life as something that is to be taken with great pleasure and enjoy it.” – Mireille Guiliano

A quote about France

“France has been very good for me. It has given me a very worldly-cool attitude.” – Marianne Faithfull

“There is an admirable fact about the psychology of France: she knows no half measures, loathsome or sublime, she forges the thought and the beauty of a world or of a dung heap; her destiny is never to be mediocre.” – Josephin Peladan

“The Seine. I have painted it all my life, at all hours of the day, at all times of the year, from Paris to the sea…Argenteuil, Poissy, Vétheuil, Giverny, Rouen, Le Havre.” – Claude Monet

“My first encounter with a baguette, torn still warm from its paper sheathing, shattered and sighed on contact. The sound stopped me in my tracks, the way a crackling branch gives deer pause; that’s what good crust does. Once I began to chew, the flavor unfolded, deep with yeast and salt, the warm humidity of the tender crumb almost breathing against my lips.” – Sasha Martin

“It’s really a drag to sit around when you’re old, and think, ‘Ah, gee, I never went to France.’ Go to France. Life is very short; you’ve got to pack it all in there.” – Grace Slick

Go to France quote

“Paris, hours in the café, a certain spirit of rebellion, one side a bit too stubborn, the sea, the true, in Bretagne, the walking in Provence, the taste, the passion for literature, the libraries, the beautiful editions, remaking the world in a set of hours around a table and a bottle of wine. Talking without really saying nothing, just for the pleasure of talking. The museums, the theatres, the elegance, the delicacy, the heritage of the Illustration, a humanistic philosophy. The balance we got between a nordic rigor and a latin savoir-vivre, the insolence and the freedom.” – Clemence Poesy

“It’s a wonderful way to live, and not a bad way to go, either. The average Frenchman is still smiling three months after he’s dead.” – Bob Hope

“Does this boat go to Europe, France?” – Anita Loos

“Every man has two countries: his own and France.” – JFK

“I want to take as the canvas for my next picture the entire surface of France.” – Yves Klein

Yves Klein quote

“Remember gentleman, it’s not just France we’re fighting for, it’s Champagne!” – Winston Churchill

“The reason why all of us naturally began to live in France is because France has scientific methods, machines and electricity, but does not really believe that these things have anything to do with the real business of living.” – Gertrude Stein

“It was in France that I first learned about food. And that even the selection of a perfect pear, a ripe piece of Brie, the freshest butter, the highest quality cream were as important as how the dish you were going to be served was actually cooked.” – Robert Carrier

“Very occasionally, I wish I was French. The fantasy usually materializes just after a holiday, when I dream of living by the warmth of the Mediterranean, or after a trip to Paris during which I indulge fantasies of being a Left Bank cafe-bohemian.” – David Olusoga

I wish I was French quote

“The French approach to food is characteristic; they bring to their consideration of the table the same appreciation, respect, intelligence and lively interest that they have for the other arts, for painting, for literature, and for the theatre.” – Alice B. Toklas

“How can anyone govern a nation that has two hundred and forty-six different kinds of cheese?” – Charles de Gaulle

“So, ask the traveled inhabitant of any nation, in what country on earth would you rather live? — Certainly, in my own, where are all my friends, my relations, and the earliest and sweetest affections and recollections of my life. Which would be your second choice? France.” – Thomas Jefferson

“France cannot be France without greatness.” – Charles de Gaulle

“France is great because she is France.” – Victor Hugo

Victor Hugo quote about France

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“I love as you come into Paris, you’ve got the Arc de Triomphe and all that crazy traffic. Then I love the drive from Paris down to Antibes and you veer off east in through the Alps and you come into the south of France on the mountain road as opposed to the freeway.” – Luke Goss

“The sights you can find here in Paris are second to none.” – G-Dragon

“The heart of Paris is like nothing so much as the unending interior of a house. Buildings become furniture, courtyards become carpets and arrases, the streets are like galleries, the boulevards conservatories. It is a house, one or two centuries old, rich, bourgeois, distinguished. The only way of going out, or shutting the door behind you, is to leave the center.” – John Berger

“I do not believe there is another city on earth so beautiful as Paris nor another people with such an appreciation of the beautiful as the French…” – Edward Hopper

“Paris is always a good idea.” – Audrey Hepburn

Paris is always a good idea quote

“Brioches are a light, pale yellow, faintly sweet kind of muffin with a characteristic blob on top, rather like a mushroom just pushing crookedly through the ground. Once eaten in Paris, they never taste as good anywhere else.” – M. F. K. Fisher

“The whole of Paris is a vast university of Art, Literature and Music… it is worth anyone’s while to dally here for years. Paris is a seminar, a post-graduate course in everything.” – James Thurber

“I have been in Paris for almost a week and I have not heard anyone say calories, or cholesterol, or even arterial plaque. The French do not season their food with regret.” – Mary-Lou Weisman

“When spring comes to Paris the humblest mortal alive must feel that he dwells in paradise.” – Henry Miller

“The national characteristics… the restless metaphysical curiosity, the tenderness of good living and the passionate individualism. This is the invisible constant in a place with which the ordinary tourist can get in touch just by sitting quite quietly over a glass of wine in a Paris bistro.” – Lawrence Durrell

“When good Americans die they go to Paris.” – Oscar Wilde

“You’ll have to fall in love at least once in your life, or Paris has failed to rub off on you.” – E. A. Bucchianeri

A Paris quote

“There’s nowhere that life feels more eternal, your dimwit youth more important, than Paris.” – Charles Finch

“I think Paris smells not just sweet but melancholy and curious, sometimes sad but always enticing and seductive. She’s a city for the all senses, for artists and writers and musicians and dreamers, for fantasies, for long walks and wine and lovers and, yes, for mysteries.” – M. J. Rose

“We believed Paris was the start of us. It’s the kind of city that makes you think of beginnings, or even juicy middles. Paris is a book to savor, in whole or in part, at any time and in any season. At age ninety or at thirty-four, you can open any chapter and read from there.” – Michelle Gable

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” – Ernest Hemingway

“I love Paris for the million reasons that everybody loves the city. It’s an incredibly romantic and beautiful place.” – Alan Furst

“As an artist one has no home in Europe except in Paris.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

“I love Paris in the summer, when it sizzles.” – Cole Porter

Paris in Summer quote

“Paris is a city that liberates you as a woman from all your sins that you think you are guilty of; it washes away all of that, and you are free.” – Golshifteh Farahani

“April in Paris, chestnuts in blossom, holiday tables under the trees.” – E. Y. Harburg

“Paris is a place where, for me, just walking down a street that I’ve never been down before is like going to a movie or something. Just wandering the city is entertainment.” – Wes Anderson

“Like many other tourists, I’m afraid I fell in love with Paris at first sight.” – Yvette Mimieux

“Paris presents one incessant round of amusement & dissipation but very little, I believe – even for its inhabitants of that society – which interests the heart. Every day, you may see something new, magnificent & beautiful; every night, you may see a spectacle which astonishes & enchants the imagination.” – John Marshall

“It’s true, you never forget your first love, and, for me, that will always be Paris.” – Caitriona Balfe

First love and Paris quote

“I’d love to be a tabletop in Paris, where food is art and life combined in one, where people gather and talk for hours. I want lovers to meet over me. I’d want to be covered in drops of candle wax and breadcrumbs and rings from the bottom of wine glasses. I would never be lonely, and I would always serve a good purpose.” – Maureen Johnson

“Paris is the most beautiful city in the world. It brings tears to your eyes.” – Lee Radziwill

“Paris is a hard place to leave, even when it rains incessantly and one coughs continually from the dampness.” – Willa Cather

“I think anybody who’s ever traveled to Paris or any sort of older European city will get caught up in the romance of the history and the ghosts you’re surrounded by every day.” – Ben Feldman

“You can’t escape the past in Paris, and yet what’s so wonderful about it is that the past and present intermingle so intangibly that it doesn’t seem to burden.” – Allen Ginsberg

“Paris… is a world meant for the walker alone, for only the pace of strolling can take in all the rich (if muted) detail.” – Edmund White

“I didn’t choose Paris. I like to think that the city chose me.” – Charlotte Le Bon

I didnt choose Paris quote

“Paris just exudes love and romance and, for me personally, hope and joy and faith, too; it just means so much to me. That place made me feel so happy and so safe, and my spirit was just so full of joy.” – Ally Brooke

“Paris is an unsolved puzzle. She inspires me in a way that other places don’t. And she demands more of me. Just try to write about her without bumping into cliche after cliche.” – M. J. Rose

“Good talkers are only found in Paris.” – Francois Villon

“People wonder why so many writers come to live in Paris. I’ve been living ten years in Paris and the answer seems simple to me: because it’s the best place to pick ideas. Just like Italy, Spain.. or Iran are the best places to pick saffron. If you want to pick opium poppies you go to Burma or South-East Asia. And if you want to pick novel ideas, you go to Paris.” – Roman Payne

“Paris is a place in which we can forget ourselves, reinvent, expunge the dead weight of our past.” – Michael Simkins

“A walk about Paris will provide lessons in history, beauty, and in the point of life.” – Thomas Jefferson

“Though I often looked for one, I finally had to admit that there could be no cure for Paris.” – Paula McLain

A quote about Paris

“Everyone dreams of living in Paris.” – Natalie Portman

“Paris is certainly one of the most boastful of cities, and you could argue that it has had a lot to boast about: at various times the European centre of power, of civilization, of the arts, and (self-advertisingly, at least) of love.” – Julian Barnes

“What an immense impression Paris made upon me. It is the most extraordinary place in the world!” – Charles Dickens

“A final reminder. Whenever you are in Paris at twilight in the early summer, return to the Seine and watch the evening sky close slowly on a last strand of daylight fading quietly, like a sigh.” – Kate Simon

“There is but one Paris and however hard living may be here, and if it became worse and harder even—the French air clears up the brain and does good – a world of good.” – Vincent Van Gogh

“Whoever does not visit Paris regularly will never really be elegant.” – Honore de Balzac

Honore de Balzac quote

“You know, I sometimes think, how is anyone ever gonna come up with a book, or a painting, or a symphony, or a sculpture that can compete with a great city. You can’t. Because you look around and every street, every boulevard, is its own special art form and when you think that in the cold, violent, meaningless universe that Paris exists, these lights. I mean come on, there’s nothing happening on Jupiter or Neptune, but from way out in space you can see these lights, the cafés, people drinking and singing. For all we know, Paris is the hottest spot in the universe.” – Owen Wilson

“Paris was a universe whole and entire unto herself, hollowed and fashioned by history; so she seemed in this age of Napoleon III with her towering buildings, her massive cathedrals, her grand boulevards and ancient winding medieval streets – as vast and indestructible as nature itself.” – Anne Rice

“That Paris exists and anyone could choose to live anywhere else in the world will always be a mystery to me.” – Marion Cotillard

“There are only two places in the world where we can live happy: at home and in Paris.” – Ernest Hemingway

“There should be a name for the syndrome that occurs when you’re in Paris and you already miss it.” – Rosecrans Baldwin

Rosecrans Baldwin quote

“Paris is so very beautiful that it satisfies something in you that is always hungry in America.” – Ernest Hemingway

“The chief danger about Paris is that it is such a strong stimulant.” – T. S. Eliot

“He who contemplates the depths of Paris is seized with vertigo. Nothing is more fantastic. Nothing is more tragic. Nothing is more sublime.” – Victor Hugo

“The art galleries of Paris contain the finest collection of frames I ever saw.” – Humphry Davy

“This is what you do on your very first day in Paris. You get yourself, not a drizzle, but some honest-to-goodness rain, and you find yourself someone really nice and drive her through the Bois de Boulogne in a taxi. The rain’s very important. That’s when Paris smells its sweetest. It’s the damp chestnut trees.” – Audrey Hepburn

“You come to Paris, you get true originality, and it’s wonderful.” – Andre Leon Talley

“A breath of Paris preserves the soul.” – Victor Hugo

Victor Hugo quote

“Every time I look down on this timeless town, whether blue or gray be her skies, whether loud be her cheers, or whether soft be her tears, more and more do I realize that…I love Paris.” – Ella Fitzgerald

“I am going to enjoy life in Paris I know. It is so human and there is something noble in the city… It is a real city, old and fine and life plays in it for everybody to see.” – Katherine Mansfield

“The one who has not seen Paris in the morning does not know how beautiful it is.” – Irving Stone

“One never sees Paris for the first time; one always sees it again.” – Edmondo De Amicis

“Paris is the only place where I feel that I lead a life that I can call my own.” – Joan Juliet Buck

“When I stand at the top of the Champs-Elysées, with its chestnut trees in flower, its undulations of shining cars, its white spaciousness, I feel as if I were biting into a utopian fruit, something velvety and lustrous and rich and vivid.” – Anais Nin

“Everything begins in Paris.” – Nancy Spain

Everything begins in Paris quote

“Paris is not a city, it is the image, the symbol of France, its today and yesterday, the reflection of its history, its geography and its hidden essence.” – Nina Berberova

“But of Paris it can be said that the right bank of the Seine belongs to the world, and the left bank to France.” – Mary Butts

“People wonder why so many writers come to live in Paris. I’ve been living ten years in Paris and the answer seems simple to me: because it’s the best place to pick ideas. Just like Italy, Spain.. or Iran are the best places to pick saffron. If you want to pick opium poppies you go to Burma or South-East Asia. And if you want to pick novel ideas, you go to Paris.” – Roman Payne

“The scent of flowers is the glory of gardens and the scent of art is the glory of Paris!” – Mehmet Murat Ildan

“Though you may leave Paris, Paris never really leaves you.” – Janice Macleod

“I’d like to see Paris before I die.” – Mae West


“You were never told that Saint-Tropez is paradise?” – Karl Lagerfeld

“When the Good Lord begins to doubt the world, he remembers that he created Provence.” – Frederic Mistral

“Aioli intoxicates gently, fills the body with warmth, and the soul with enthusiasm. In its essence it concentrates the strength, the gaiety of Provence: sunshine.” – Frederic Mistral

“Provence is a country to which I am always returning, next week, next year, any day now, as soon as I can get on a train.” – Elizabeth David

“I think you get better at staring into space. Especially living in the South of France.” – Adrian Lyne

South of France quote

“There’s something about the air and the sky and the atmosphere in the South of France that must be very conducive to work, to being creative, because I have written several of my books there. I find it so much easier because you’re cut off. If you don’t want to speak to anybody, basically they don’t know where you are. And it’s so beautiful.” – Joan Collins

“To a common man, the opulence of the day makes no sense but to a philosopher, it is as clear as a night in the southern France.” – Indiana Lang

“I’d like to combine melancholy and sunshine… There’s a sadness in Provence which no one has expressed… I’d like to put reason in the grass and tears in the sky, like Poussin.” – Paul Cezanne

“The air in Provence is impregnated with the aroma of garlic, which makes it very healthful to breathe.” – Alexandre Dumas

Provence quote

“Marseille could be like the wind out on the sea. It could whip like the wind. It could fall quiet.” – Christopher X. Shade

“Marseilles isn’t a city for tourists. There’s nothing to see. Its beauty can’t be photographed. It can only be shared. It’s a place where you have to take sides, be passionately for or against. Only then can you see what there is to see. And you realize, too late, that you’re in the middle of a tragedy. An ancient tragedy in which the hero is death. In Marseilles, even to lose you have to know how to fight.” – Jean-Claude Izzo

“We have a saying in Marseilles: a man in no hurry gets nowhere fast. I have been in no hurry for eight years.” – Gregory David Roberts

“Certain streets have an atmosphere of their own, a sort of universal fame and the particular affection of their citizens. One of such streets is the Cannebiere, and the jest: “If Paris had a Cannebiere, it would be a little Marseilles” is the jocular expression of municipal pride. I, too, I have been under the spell. For me it has been a street leading into the unknown.” – Joseph Conrad about Marseilles

“I am working with the enthusiasm of a man from Marseilles eating bouillabaisse, which shouldn’t come as a surprise to you because I am busy painting huge sunflowers.” – Vincent Van Gogh


“Lyon is unusual and seems to be exceptionally incompetent at publicizing itself. In fact, it doesn’t want visitors. It fears discovery.” – Bill Buford

“The convergence of the Rhone and Saone. Paul Bocuse. The birthplace of cinema. Chateauneuf-du-Pape just a few miles down the road. It does not get much better than Lyon.” – Leonard Slatkin

Quote about Lyon

“It was a very Corsican wine and you could dilute it by half with water and still receive its message.” – Ernest Hemingway

“Water makes me feel at peace. In Corsica, I spend most of my time on the beaches or in the rivers. That’s one reason I love it there so much. The water is so clean and fresh – you can drink it straight out of the rivers! This island is my secret garden.” – Laetitia Casta

“It was then I thought of Corsica, the place we had discovered together. I craved the wind, the sun and salt, the simplicity of the island.” – Lucy Foley

“I did quite enjoy the days when one went for a beer at one’s local in Paris and woke up in Corsica.” – Peter O’Toole

Quote about Corsica

“Do you know that charming part of our country which has been called the garden of France – that spot where, amid verdant plains watered by wide streams, one inhales the purest air of heaven?” – Alfred de Vigny about Touraine

“The wine they drink in Paradise
They make in Haute Lorraine.” – Gilbert K. Chesterton

“It was like the first time I visited Versailles. There was an eerieness, like I’d been there before. I don’t know if I was Louis XIV or Marie Antoinette or a lowly groundskeeper, but I lived there.” – Maurice Minnifield

About Or Amir

Hey, I'm Or! I'm a passionate traveler with a severe coffee, chocolate, and pastry addiction (or any other carb for that matter). Obsessed with anything Spain-related, I'm always planning my next trip (and the excitement alone can bring tears to my eyes, not that it's difficult to make me cry).

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