It’s getting to that time of year again when I’m longingly looking at my calendar and wondering how long it’ll take for summer to roll around.

We’ve just managed to get through the dark doldrums of winter, but it still feels like an age until the summer months will truly be with us. Thankfully, there’s always the therapeutic past time of planning holidays to keep us warm inside and optimistic enough to wade through the rest of the cold months. I’ve decided with my significant other to plan a trip to the South of France this year and have taken inspo from blogs on the topic to create my own French Staycation Holiday Planning Guide.

Find your destination!

Before you go ahead and book those flights you’ll need to take into consideration location what part of the of France you’re heading to. It’s impossible to break down the differences between all the regions of France, but it’s a good rule of thumb to remember that the further South you stay the more likely you’ll be to experience the warm weather. Stay on the coast to get close to the beach action (duh!) and stay further in land to be nearer to the vineyards.

Where will you stay?

Once you know which region of France you’re staying in you’ll be able to start looking at places to stay (this is my favourite part!). By now you should know who’s going, this should inform you on the type of place you’ll book. If you’re travelling as a couple then you’ll be looking at small apartments and gites (cottages in French), however if you’re travelling in a larger group then you can push the boat out and go for something a bit grander.

How will you get around?

Regardless of how you get to your destination (car, plane, train, ferry) you’ll need to have a way of getting round once your’re there. Driving is a good option if you’re comfortable with going on the other side of the road, but if you’re staying in a village for a few days then you could consider renting bikes to get you from A to B, this will then mean that you can avoid the typical argument about who’ll be the designated driver and gives everyone the chance to relax.

What will you eat?

The cuisine is one of the main draws for visitors to France, but it could get expensive choosing to eat out for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day! When you’re choosing the property that you want to stay in it’s a god idea to check if there are local amenities in the area. Shopping at a French market can be an experience in itself and then you’ll be able save a little money for the ‘big-ticket’ meals that you’ll certainly want to indulge in. That being said, not all French restaurants are expensive, most towns have a number of affordable bistros which will serve good quality food without costing you a fortune.