Top things to do

Top Choice Citadel in Besançon

Citadelle de Besançon

Dominating the city from Mt St Etienne, 120 vertical metres above the old town, the 17th-century Citadelle de Besançon – designed by Vauban for Louis XIV – commands sweeping views of the city and the serpentine Rive…
Top Choice Viewpoint in Chamonix

Aiguille du Midi

A great broken tooth of rock rearing among the Alpine fastness of the Mont Blanc massif, the Aiguille du Midi (3842m) is one of Chamonix’ most distinctive geographical features. If you can handle the altitude, the 3…
Top Choice Historic Site in Chambéry

Ville Ancienne

Chambéry has one of the best-preserved medieval old towns this side of the Alps. Its hidden courtyards, cafe-rimmed squares and lanes flanked by 14th- to 18th-century hôtels are great for an aimless amble. Streets w…
Top Choice Museum in Grenoble

Musée de Grenoble

It's worth a trip to Grenoble just to experience this grand tour of Western art from the 13th century, which includes 20th-century luminaries such as Bonnard, Calder, Giacometti, Léger, Magritte, Miró, Modigliani, P…
Top Choice French in Chambéry

Les Halles

This ordinary-looking bistro, beloved by locals, combines gourmet panache with a warm welcome and faultless service. Try regional specialities including chicken stuffed with diots (Savoyard sausages) and creamy Beau…
Top Choice Modern French in Val d’Isère

L’Atelier d’Edmond

Candlelight bathes stone walls, low beams and family heirlooms in this gorgeous double-Michelin-starred restaurant, where locally sourced ingredients are imaginatively transformed into dishes such as smoked pigeon w…
Top Choice Microbrewery in Chamonix

MBC

Run by the last man standing of four Canadian founders, this buzzing microbrewery is one of Chamonix' most unpretentious and gregarious watering holes. Be it with their phenomenal burgers (€10 to €15), chilli-licked…
Top Choice Museum in Chamonix

Musée des Cristaux

Has a truly dazzling collection of crystals, rocks and minerals, many from around Mont Blanc. L'Espace Alpinisme focuses on the art and science of mountaineering with creative interactive displays and spectacular ph…
Top Choice French in Arbois & the Route des Vins du Jura

Bistrot des Claquets

Loved by vignerons (winegrowers) and other locals, this unpretentious, convivial little bistrot serves fantastic French country fare, but only at lunchtime! If you miss the petit salé (lentils with salt pork), blanq…
Top Choice Museum in Besançon

Musée des Beaux-Arts et d’Archéologie

France's oldest public museum, founded in 1694, is famous for its stellar collection of local Gallo-Roman archaeology; its Cabinet des Dessins, with some 6000 drawings from the 15th to 20th centuries, including mast…