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Prestige Holidays for the autumn

Prolonging the summer – in luxury

After the long, lazy days of high summer, autumn (and by implication, the gradual onset of winter) can sometimes feel something of an anti-climax. We breathe a collective sigh at the thought that the good times of summer are over for another year.

But as the carefree days drift further into memories it is still possible to extend the dream.

The solution? Simply take a short holiday, heading south to France, and indulge in one of our Belle France Prestige Holidays with extra special château hotels, gourmet cuisine (often Michelin star rated) and unique extras.

That’s a sure fire way to return a week or so later feeling refreshed and ready to take on winter and embrace it for all its positives.

Vineyards of Burgundy in autumn
Vineyards of Burgundy in autumn

The charms of autumn

When you head south the autumn back home becomes slightly more distant. And, yes, the weather is more likely to be better than back home in the UK. France offers a climate that is generally warmer and brighter than ours in the UK, wherever you visit.

You’ll find the warm autumnal weather very agreeable and certainly far preferable to the sultry, searing days of high summer when you are enjoying some gentle walking or cycling.

From late August the main crush of French holidaymakers begins to head home, so September and October sees a far less frenetic atmosphere: the kids are back at school, the queues are shorter, it’s easier to find a restaurant table and access to sights and museums is generally more relaxed.

The roads and by-ways too are less busy, contributing to a calmer holiday experience. Everyone seems to have more time for you!

Autumn sunset
Autumn sunset

A touch of luxury

We all love a little luxury and where better to experience it than France. We have sought out some the country’s most special hotels, often in stunning heritage châteaux properties. Over many years, we have used our vast experience and done our homework to offer you world-class restaurants where you can expect superb gastronomic experiences in elegant surroundings.

You might be celebrating an anniversary or a ‘special event’, or perhaps you simply want to extend the glory days of summer before digging out the winter woollies.

These Prestige Holidays bring together all that is sublime and superlative about France. It’s a heady combination of unique experiences, memorable meals, and hotels with a real wow factor.

Le Moulin du Roc, Dordogne
Le Moulin du Roc, Dordogne

Gourmet experiences

On a Belle France Prestige Holiday gourmet cuisine is part of the deal. Typically, you’ll enjoy a menu to savour, with classic dishes and local specialities, according to season.

After a day’s easy going activity, you’ll feel you’ve earned a fantastic meal. Depending on where you are staying, relax with an aperitif on the terrace admiring both the views and the menu. Reflect on the day’s experiences, clock the memories and anticipate a sumptuous dinner. What a marvellous way to end the day!

Making a decision often proves the toughest part of the day…. What’s it to be? The Magret de canard au jus de pineau, gâteau de pommes de terre et légumes d’été sounds tempting. But what about the Pintadeau fermier en ballottine, risotto forestier, accompagnement de saison? Or, perhaps, the beef - Filet de bœuf crémeux de cèpes, primeurs d’été et gâteau de pommes de terre. Decisions, decisions….

Seared scallops on a bed of mixed vegetables
Seared scallops on a bed of mixed vegetables

The Vendange

The other wonderful aspect of a French holiday in the autumn is the chance to experience the vendange. The grape harvest is in full swing, though exact dates do vary according to region, weather, grapes and other factors.

A walking or cycling holiday allows you to get close to the grape picking action as you stroll or pedal past. Watching the grapes being harvested and then later enjoying a bottle of the same wine (from a previous year of course!) is a real pleasure.

It’s a great way to feel part of the landscape and culture that you are travelling through.

The grape harvest
The grape harvest

See for yourself

Some of our Prestige holidays are showcased below.

Don’t forget, it’s luxury all the way – if choosing rail travel from London we automatically include 1st Class Eurostar tickets for an extra special start to your autumn holiday.

6 Related Holidays