Cheap flights to Nantes, France
Welcome to Nantes, the fifth largest city in France. Just 239 miles south of Paris, this thriving commercial and maritime hub remains one of the wealthiest ports in the country. What used to be a place known only for ship building and trading, is now an architectural spectacle, boasting gorgeous and memorable renovations since serious structural damage in during World War II.
Although the fresh scenery makes for a pretty portrait, Nantes doesn’t lose itself in modernity – in fact, it loves its past. No longer a part of Brittany, Nantes ‘s new profile still celebrates its history by preserving its saga in medieval remnants, the Castle of Ducode Bretagne, the Musee des Beaux-Arts, and the Musee de Jules Verne.
It’s likely your flight to Nantes will be packed with students: With more than 30,000 college students in tow, Nantes is quickly becoming an educational and cultural core of the land, beckoning both youth and more mature crowds to experience its uniqueness.
The oceanic climate of Nantes makes warm summers and cool winters both pleasant times to book flights to Nantes and visit the northwest section of France. A hybrid of mountain and waterside terrain allows for magnificent outdoor opportunities and very few excuses to stay indoors. Unlike tourists, both frost and humidity rarely make appearances during spring, summer, and autumn.
Best Time to Fly to Nantes
Warm summer time in Nantes brings droves of tourists by the water, but cool autumn and wet winter can mean cheap air fares to Nantes and easier access to hotels.
Peak Season: The warm, dry season lasts from June to September, with breezy temperatures between 60F-70F. Tourists visit mostly during the summer to take advantage of outdoor venues like riverside restaurants and open-air gardens. Having only half the rainfall as the winter seasons, summer days average 14 hours of daylight, maximizing your exposure to enjoyment in the sun.
Off-peak Season: While winters become wet and cool, the off season still has much to offer an adventurous tourist. If you plan on visiting Nantes between October and November, make sure to see Celtomania, a fusion of traditional and contemporary music from Scotland, Ireland, Wales, and Brittany. Travelers will likely find plenty of cheap flights to Nantes during the off-season, thanks in part to it being the rainy season. Bring an umbrella, though, because when it rains, it pours. Even though rainfall is usually followed by clear skies and sun, the amount of rainfall doubles in the winter.
Getting around Nantes
When you land at Nantes Atlantique Airport (NTE) in Bougenais, you’ll find a multitude of transportation options. The city has a TGV station and the longest tram network in the country. An airport shuttle timed to accommodate incoming flights will drop you off at Gare SNCF Sud, the largest train station in the city and the best place to hop aboard a train. It’s only a two hour ride to Paris and four hours to Lyon. To travel smartly within Nantes, buy yourself a “Pass Nantes,” which works on all the public transportation, including buses and trams. If you’re there for longer than a week, it’s probably worth it to buy a monthly tram pass. Validate your passes on the bus to avoid a fine. You can also rent a bike from Velocampus, a local rental company, which includes a tire pump, maps for trails, and tickets to place on illegally parked cars. And if that isn’t enough, there are also river ferries and taxis to help you get around.
Nantes Travel Information
Nightlife: For chic locale where locals come to play, head straight for Le Lieu Unique, the cultural center for entertainment. What used to be a 19th century biscuit factory is now a celebrated venue housing hundreds of art exhibitions, plays, and musical performances every year. While students and artists mostly populate the hip space, free admission and cozy atmosphere attracts crowds of all kinds. Take a stroll around the restaurants and bars before or after visiting to complete your evening.
Affordable Fare: For the tourist on a budget, dining at fancy French restaurants every night might make unfriendly dents in one’s purse. Instead of opting for the full-course cuisine each night of your trip, steer towards Nantes’ many supermarket chains to pick up what you need without the glam. Look for stores like Leclerc, Carrefour, and Auchan, which are all supermarkets that carry whatever your stomach desires, as well as other necessary small conveniences. Marche U is a smaller market chain that carries only food, but either way, you’re bound to save a few euros.
Cathedrale de Saint Pierre: Brush up on your history during your flight to Nantes. Construction for this stunning white cathedral began in 1434, but wasn’t completed until 1891. Clearly the worth the wait, the structure’s gothic influences produced two impressive square towers on each side, and an ornate interior that makes for breathtaking photographs. For the avid history buff, head inside to see the sacred tombs where Francois II and others rest. In 1972, the church endured a massive fire that seared the roof, but recently underwent renovations.
Celtomania: For tourists that prefer to travel during the alternative off-season, this musical festival is impossible to miss. Set in the weeks of October and November, Celtomania celebrates the diversity of Scotland, Ireland, Wales, and Brittany. From iron-age folk music, to traditional songs, to contemporary sounds, you’re bound to hear something new. In addition to music, readings and art exhibitions are sporadically placed throughout the area, creating a truly distinct and sundry affair. Book a cheap flight to Nantes and celebrate with the locals during this yearly festival.
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- France flights are available between major cities. Air France has many domestic flights.
- Lyon is France's second city and its location near to the Alps makes it the perfect base to explore the country.
- A founding member state of the European Union, France is the largest one by area.
- Spring is a very popular time to book direct flights to France.
- Destinations for one way flights to France are often Nice and the Cote d'Azur region.
- Southern France has a Mediterranean climate with mild winters and very hot summers.
- Take a last minute flight to France and travel on the TGV, the high speed inter-city train service.
- Toulouse, known as The Ville Rose, or pink city, is a vibrant metropolis with a huge student population.