It’s grim up north. The skies are grey and it rains all the time – and you can’t step outside without a cardigan after the end of August.
I guess I could be referring to England, but I am actually talking about France.
The thought has been prompted by this month’s French Property News, out today. The magazine has pitted northern France against the south. Two sets of gîte owners have been asked to make the case for their half of the country.
First off the mark are Sue and Ron Ollerenshaw, who have been running a five-cottage holiday complex in Brittany for over 20 years. I’ve lived in Rennes and know that the region has many charms. Thousands of Brits head there every year, enjoying both its proximity to England and its 750+ miles of beaches.
Further up the coast, Normandy has many beautiful places to visit too, including Deauville, Honfleur and Rouen. To the east, Champagne-Ardenne has, well, champagne. Say no more.
In the middle, of course, there’s Paris. The city is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations – and with good reason.
The second couple are Sabine and Graham Peek, who are in Languedoc-Roussillon.
For me, they have it right. The south has to win any battle with the north. It has fascinating cities such as Bordeaux, Nice and Toulouse (pictured), plus mountains and sun-drenched sandy beaches…
The south of England would triumph over the north of England for me, too, as it happens.
I guess that makes me a true southerner.