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P&O Ferries guide to 2017 and Holiday deals in France


It is never too early to start planning your holiday for 2017. We are taking a look at some of the best deals and exciting events happening in France early next year, what better way is there to shrug off 2016 than travelling abroad with P&O Ferries to cap off your festive break and start a whole new year with the pleasures of a French holiday?

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For many it is hoped that a new year will bring a new you. Be it new year’s resolutions, starting that new job or opening a new chapter on your life with someone new. Your holiday doesn’t just have to be an escape from the daily grind you can use it to nourish your mind and body. Yoga retreats are not such a new thing however the growing numbers who practice the art of mindfulness meditation has lead to mindfulness retreats. For those who are unfamiliar with ‘mindfulness’ it is essentially a form of meditation that focuses awareness. Though we are all to greater or lesser extent ‘aware’ with meditation this awareness is exercised. It has been used as a means to reduce stress and broaden one’s self. If you consider that the majority of us, for one reason or another spend a lot of time on ‘auto-pilot’ mindfulness is an excellent means of making yourself more present and therefore a little more able to empathise with others as well a capable of responding proportionately to the slings and arrows of modern living.

Your holiday in France can be spent at one of the mindfulness retreats such as Plum Village in Bordeaux. There are also centres situated in the Alpes and south-west France. It would be wise to immerse yourself in the culture before attending one of the retreats just to ensure you know what you’re signing up for.

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We all love a landmark but sometimes the fear of falling in to a tourist trap and wasting an entire day milling around in endless crowds can be can be so great that you’ll forgo seeing something iconic just to avoid queues. It is for this very purpose that Skip the Line has been invented. Since the Eiffel tower is like the hub on which all outside perspective of France rotates, if it’s your first time visiting, you will likely want to visit the tower. It’s estimated that around 7 million people go to see the Eiffel Tower each year by booking a skip the line tour for a little as £50 you can get an 1.5 hour tour. With it you get access to the first and second story for wandering at your leisure as well as, most importantly, access to the summit which with your Skip the Line booking you get without having to line up for hours.

Calling all gourmands! In 2017 for one weekend only on the 14th &15th of January is the Black Perigord Truffle Producer’s Group Truffle Festival or for short, just the ‘Truffle Festival’ at Sarlat. Sarlat le Caneda is right at the bottom of France near Bergerac. If you are just starting to discover the finer things in life or are merely a big fan of truffles then book now for your trip to Sarlat. The two day festival will host talks and workshops on preparing, identifying and appreciating truffles. There will also, of course, be a lot opportunity to sample and shop for locally sourced truffles.

Local restaurants will have their own stands on Place de Liberte where demonstrations from the chefs on how to prepare truffles and samples of ‘Croustos’ a miniature dish tapas-like can be tasted. Finally this event helps out the next generation of truffle eaters by having hosting the Jean Rougie Award for Baccalaureate students, this is a cooking competition using perigord truffles with the winning get the chance for future career advancement. For more information on this event click here

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One of the other major Winter events in France is the City of Nice’s Carnival. Make your way to the south coast for one of the brightest spectacles in Europe this side of Summer. The theme for 2017 is King of Energy what better way to rid yourself of winter’s cobwebs then taking a trip down to the riviera for a bit of mediterranean sun and a festival fun? In 2017 February 11th – 26th a grand parade of floats bursting with colour and music will proceed throughout the city of Nice with thousands of dancers and musicians. To draw you in to the pulsing crowds float rides engage in flower battles’ wherein flowers are thrown at the onlooking crowd raining colour on the whole procession. Absolutely something not to miss for more details go to the Nice Carnival website.

P&O Ferries hopes to see you in 2017 whether to take the Ferry from Dover to Calais or if you’re travelling to Holland or Belgium ferries depart multiple times a day from the port in Hull

Image Credit: gckwolfe , anne arnould , Carnaval a Nice

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