Versailles and Fontainebleau, before becoming towns, were châteaux which symbolised royal power, luxury and the talent of the artists who worked on them.
In the collective imagination they occupy a place alongside the Château de Vaux le Vicomte or the Basilica of Saint Denis (the necropolis of the kings of France), both of which were privileged witnesses to a colourful royal history.
The past erects its monuments like chronological markers spread throughout the green landscapes of the region. The medieval city of Provins, the forest of Rambouillet and its Vaux de Cernay Abbey, Maubuisson Abbey and its 20 acre grounds...
Ile-de-France is a perfect mix of culture and greenery, as many great artists realised long ago. Behind the church at Auvers-sur-Oise you will observe the tormented figure of Van Gogh, and the Chevreuse Valley has certainly left its mark on the canvases of the Impressionists, who were shortly preceded by the artists of the Barbizon School.
The historic and artistic Ile-de-France region, the 'capital' region, is constantly evolving. A symbol of the future, the Grande Arche de la Défense looks like an archetypal modern anthill overlooking Paris, which also teeters between its old buildings and its perpetual secrets to eternal youth.
Catching a flight is the most efficient way to get to Ile-de-France. As the French capital and a major European city, there are direct flights to Paris from just about every country in the world. But the region is well connected and other travel options include taking a train, car, coach,or boat. These can be cheaper and just as easy.Once you are in Ile-de-France it is extremely to get around. The metro, over ground trains and buses offers a relatively hassle-free and convenient way to travel around the Ile-de-France. Most destinations in Ile-de-France are easily made as day trips via train from Paris. In Paris it is even possible to hire bikes, known as Vélibs, to get around. If you would prefer, consider renting a car. Rentals are available from Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports in Paris or from various service outlets in Paris itself.
Citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland are not required to have a visa to enter France's European territory.
Perhaps the most useful French tradition, and the one that will get you out of an awkward situation, is knowing how to greet people. The art of the ?bisous? is greeting the French with kisses on the cheek. The number of kisses varies among different regions, but in Ile-de-France a kiss on each cheek will suffice.
Some classic French dishes include boeuf bourguignon, a stew made of beef braised in red wine, beef broth and seasoned with garlic, onions and mushrooms, and coq au vin, a dish made with chicken, Burgundy wine, lardons, button mushrooms, onions and garlic. If you're feeling adventurous, you could even try snails or frogs legs.Sweet dishes are very popular in his region, many in the form of a pastry. But before dessert you must have some cheese, and with something like 500 different kinds of French cheese, you have quite a choice.
Find weekly weather forecasts for Ile de France . Different criteria make it possible to predict with precision the best time of year to go to Ile de France . A comprehensive weather score, made up of temperature indicators, bad weather predictions, sunshine levels and wind speeds, will allow you to choose the activities best suited to the weather conditions and therefore make the most of your holiday in Ile de France .