The 10 must-visit French villages you’ve never heard of

Without further ado, here are their picks. How many have you been to?


Moncontour is a medieval village in Brittany, north western France, with just shy of 1,000 inhabitants (who are known as the moncontourais). It's position overlooking two valleys is a key ingredient of its rich history, with many a battle being fought nearby. Enjoy the cobble-stoned streets and the stone-walled buildings in this picturesque snapshot of times gone by.

Must see:

The intricate St-Mathurin church, which dates from the 16th century


Blesle, in the Haute-Loire départment in south-central France, has just 650 residents. It's practically a complete secret. And if you want some history, you've come to the right place. The area was settled with the building of a benedictine monastery in the ninth century, but the site was occupied at least 4,000 years ago. Take a stroll along the timber and stone homes and venture out to see the remnants of the walls that once defended the village.


The Abbey Church of Saint-Peter from the 12th century


This village in central France's Limousin has 350 inhabitants. It was, like Blesle, constructed around a benedictine monastery and is consistently voted among the prettiest villages in France. Be sure to check out the Notre Dame church, and the fortified Saint-Robert church. The village has a big classical music scene too, check here if you want to know more.


The view! Saint-Robert is perched on a hill, and the views are spectacular


In central France, you'll find this stunning village with only 231 inhabitants. You'll no doubt feel right at home from the moment you arrive – and don't forget your camera. There is a medieval fortress complete with towers and a châtelet (a sort of little castle), plus streets covered in flowers. This is another regular on the most beautiful village lists in France – and for good reason.


The fortress, of course (built in the 13th century)


In Alsace, eastern France, lies Mittelbergheim. If you're keen on a tipple, you've come to the right place, as this secluded treasure makes some of the best wine in the country. The guide book recommends checking out the old oil mill from the 18th century, but there's also guided tours and a museum.


The bottom of a glass of Sylvaner wine, made in the region. A votre santé!


Another tiny village – Eus, in southern France's Pyrénées-Orientales, boasts some of the best views of all the villages in this list. Eus belonged to Spain back in the 16th, and the Spanish influence is still distinctly noticeable today, with many of the street names in Spanish.


The Saint Vincent church at the top of the hill.


Head to the Dordogne département for this village, which boasts a heavy influence of Perigord architecture complete with a few traditional stone roofs. The church, as usual, is the biggest and most impressive feature of the area featuring an enormous bell-tower. The church was built eight centuries ago, and renovated in the 19th century.


The hospital with its stone arched gateway


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