Thinking of moving to France but still working on your language skills? Living in an area with a large expat community might just be the solution while you find your feet. Where are the best places to focus your search if you want to be able to access an English-speaking community?
Paris and the Ile de France
The biggest expat community in France lives in and around Paris. It’s a fabulous city to live, with world-class museums and galleries, cosmopolitan neighbourhoods and great schools and green spaces. However, property there is some of the most expensive in Europe, so you might like to focus your search elsewhere.
With the sunniest climate in France and a fantastic coastline, this region has the second largest expat community in France. Head for Charente and Charente Maritime to Angouleme, the capital of the bande dessinee (or cartoons) or the stunning old port of La Rochelle. The Vienne and Deux-Sevres are quieter and more rural, but Poitiers and Futuroscope are real highlights.
With great transport links back to the UK and one of the world’s greatest wine regions on your doorstep, it’s not surprising that many expats own property here. Focus your property for sale in France search on fabulous Bordeaux or the surfers’ paradise of Biarritz. Head inland for gorgeous properties in historic Bergerac or beautiful towns like Bayonne and Agen.
If you’re looking for Property for sale in France in a region of stunning beauty, the Midi-Pyrenees is another popular choice. Keen cyclists love tackling the climbs of the Tour de France, while Toulouse is a fabulous city with a Mediterranean climate. Expats here enjoy UNESCO World Heritage sites and some of the most beautiful villages in France.
In a 2016 study, the city of Rennes was judged to be the best in France for expats thanks to its excellent transport links and quality of life. Brittany is one of France’s most picturesque regions, with a stunning beaches, peaceful agricultural farmland and some fabulous liveable cities like Nantes and Fougeres.
Lyon is the capital of French gastronomy, so it’s no wonder Brits flock to this diverse area. From the sleepy villages of the Ardeche to the drama of the Alps, this is the more exciting neighbour of pricey Provence.