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France as seen from above

Reach for the sky and enjoy France in all its beauty

 

From peaks to cliffs and from roofs to bell towers, France hides breathtaking views. From such heights, you can enjoy them in all their splendour.

 

Fly up to catch the Icarus Cup

The village of Saint-Hilaire-du-Touvet, in the Isère region, holds the Icarus Cup every year in September. For four days, aerialists from everywhere in the world jump from the cliff that circles the village on paragliders, hand-gliders or ULAs. The culminating point (might one dare say) of the event is an aerial carnival in which the best costumes face each other. Giant dragons and dragonflies glide over Grenoble and the valley of Grésivaudan.

 

Climb on top of the Aiguille du Midi

You can access the Aiguille du Midi (literally "Needle of the South") from Chamonix by cable car. Located at 3,842 m high, four panoramic terraces built on the summit offer a unique view on the Alps and the nearby Mont Blanc. Adrenaline junkies have the opportunity to try the "step in the void" and walk on a glass floor held over 1,200 m of void.

 

Walk on the ridge of the Pilat dune

No need to go to Peru to surf on giant sand dunes. The highest dune in Europe is located at the entrance of the Arcachon Bay. With its 110 m, the dune of Pilat towers over the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the great forests of the Gascon "Landes" on the other. Once a hiker reaches the ridge, he can enjoy an endless sea of blue... or green.

 

Enjoy Paris from the Montparnasse tower

The roof of the Montparnasse tower undoubtedly offers the most beautiful view over Paris. From the Eiffel tower to the July Column and the Sacred Heart, you can even see the Charles-de-Gaulle airport when the weather is clear. In case of rain, the 360° Café located three floors lower will offer the same view, safely behind its glass walls.

 

Recharge your batteries in Saint-Véran

In the Queyras valley, the 270 inhabitants of the Saint-Véran village live at 2,042 m high. The rough stone and wood houses show a long tradition of isolation. Cars cannot enter the village, self-appointed high village in France. “Lou plus hauto communoutas in se mangeu lou pan de Dieu”, says a writing in Occitan on the wall of the church: "The highest village where you can eat the bread of God".

 

Photo credit: Alessandro Malatesta