Based in the heart of the Kent countryside, Belle France is a friendly business ideally positioned to offer a professional yet personal service. Our travel consultants have extensive experience in the French tourist industry and share a passion for France, its culture and cuisine, and its people.
In 2016, Belle France celebrated its 30 year anniversary. From humble beginnings as a small operation selling holidays in the Auvergne, the company grew, relocated and now offers over 60 holidays in more than 20 regions of France.
Say hello to team Belle France. Great people with a passion for all things French. Many of them have lived in France and speak fluent French. So they know and love the territory. And together they have over 30 years experience in showing walkers and cyclists the very best of this wonderful country.
Lorna Tierney - Our Central France expert
Lorna took on the role of Manager last year, she is a fluent French speaker and loves cycling and walking and organising, so is in the perfect job, she has been sharing her expertise and knowledge with Belle France for the past 12 years.
A Fluent French speaker and a keen cyclist and walker herself she understands the individual needs of clients and matches them to their perfect holiday.
She has researched and built from scratch many of the holidays that you see in this brochure, she regularly visits hotels to ensure that Belle France accommodations reach our high expectations of quality, and she walks and cycles many of the routes updating and correcting where needed so that they are ready for the new season of clients.
Although knowledgeable on all regions she is certainly the Loire specialist, making twice yearly visits to ensure that we are offering the best hotels, châteaux and routes.
My absolute favourite holiday: Château, Gardens and Abbeys
I researched the Château, Gardens and Abbeys walk from scratch and walked the route with just a map and a rough idea of the towns and visits I needed to include, it is has quite long distances and so I really felt that I had achieved something at the end of each day. I personally picked the best French Authentic hotels that I could find and I feel they add a real sense of charm and comfort to the holiday.
If you like a good long walk with a mix of towns, countryside, châteaux and gardens finished with a comfortable charming hotel and topped nicely with a good hearty French dinner then this is for you.
Catherine Bellanger - Our Northern & Eastern France expert
Catherine is French and worked in France for some time before moving to England. Belle France is the perfect opportunity for her to liaise with her home country on a daily basis.
Catherine’s role is varied: from advising customers on destinations to creating new tours, or even preparing travel packs and making sure everything is well planned. Lately she was delighted to accept her new position as Product Development Manager and she is dedicating a lot of her time to researching and improving holidays.
Being French, Catherine has a good knowledge on most regions. She has taken responsibility for a wide area spreading from North, where she was born, to Northern West and Northern East and even the Massif Central, which includes the Auvergne and the Cévennes with their hilly terrain.
My absolute favourite holiday: Mont St Michel Walk
This holiday is a new one for 2017. It’s a perfect invigorating break not far from the British shores with ferries to Cherbourg in the Contentin peninsula.
With the enchanting view of the Baie du Mont-Saint Michel, a Unesco World Heritage site, for most of the walk and, from Granville, the coastal paths between sea and land, it’s a perfect holiday to clear your mind. The walk ends by a visit of the Mont Saint Michel. Being the third most visited site in France, I would avoid peak times like July or August, mid-term holidays in France and weekends. But the site is superb all year round.
Rebecca Bradshaw - Our Southern France expert
Rebecca’s passion for France began over 30 years ago after her first holiday there. Since then she has visited the country many times gaining a large amount of knowledge on the regions and culture.
She is a French speaker and a keen walker who loves the outdoors so can relate very well with our clients requirements. Rebecca knows many regions within France well but is a specialist on Provence. She has spent a lot of time in this region and has walked many of our routes and visited a lot of our hotels. She has established a good working relationship with many of our hoteliers and suppliers enabling us to provide only the best service for our clients.
My absolute favourite holiday: Luxury Walk in the Luberon
This is one of my favourite routes in Provence as it beings in the wonderful papal city of Avignon then encompasses some of the most beautiful villages in the region such as Gordes, Lacoste and Bonnieux. The fabulous scenery in true ‘Peter Mayle – Year in Provence’ style is inspiring as you walk through some stunning countryside along with views of the Alps and Mediterranean Sea.
The wonderful quality of the accommodation along the route is luxurious and the cuisine in the region is some of the best that only the French can provide.
Kate Kynaston - Our Western France expert
Kate’s passion for France started many years ago when she was a student in Paris, studying for her degree. Since living and working in France for several years, she has returned many times over the years to visit, both on holiday and on work research trips.
A keen naturalist and Francophone, she likes to combine both interests when visiting France. Her favourite area is the Aquitaine and she is very excited about Belle France’s new holidays this year along the Velodyssey, one of Europe’s longest cycle tracks, which runs along the Atlantic coast.
My absolute favourite holiday: Grands Vin de Bordeaux
I absolutely love the town of Bordeaux, and would recommend spending a couple of extra nights there at the beginning of the Grands Vin de Bordeaux Tour. The town itself is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the 18th Century architecture is stunning. Victor Hugo described it as a mixture of Versailles and Antwerp.
It also boasts some amazing contemporary architecture such as the Cité du Vin, a wine museum, which is designed to represent wine swirling round a wine glass. It has some lovely parks and it’s location on the Gironde makes for a stunning riverside location bordered by beautiful gardens. There is a huge variety of restaurants offering great food for all budgets.
Chris is our Chief Operating Officer, he enjoys family cycling holidays in the Dordogne.
Martin is our Development Manager, he is a huge fan of the Tour de France which is a great inspiration when looking at new holidays.
Rob is our General Manager, he’s an experienced long distance cyclist with a passion for adventure.
Alison is our Finance Manager, she is a lover of fine wine and her favourite region of France is Charente.
Marie is head of Belle France accounts and being French she has built up a strong relationship with all of our partners and suppliers over the years.
Ben is our IT guy; he keeps our website up-to-date and manages our social media.
Why not check out our Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest
Jo is our Project Manager, she loves Paris and is partial to a good French wine!