France and Switzerland are two of the most powerful countries in Europe and are full of outstanding attractions, eye-catching scenery and fantastic food.

Deciding between the two isn’t easy, so this battle is sure to be closely contested. France offers the magic and wonder of Nice, the class and pizzazz of Bordeaux as well as the spectacular ski slopes and big city feel of Lyon.

On the other hand, Switzerland is growing into one of the most popular new European destinations, with holidaymakers returning time and time again to enjoy its great food, fascinating culture and mesmerising landscape.

Let’s see how they match up.

Variety is the spice of life in France

Credit: grutfrut

We usually have city breaks and summer destinations, but those countries that tick both boxes are truly special. France is certainly one of these.

If you want a getaway in the sun with some added culture, Nice is the place to be. Based on the French Riviera, this sun-drenched resort has been popular for years with historical sites such as the Old Town and Musee National Marc Chagall sat alongside the relaxing Promenade des Anglais,

For an authentic city break experience, Lyon is a winner. As well as exploring its many high-street shops, visitors can go for a peaceful stroll through the stunning Parc de la Tete D’or or take a step back in time through the cobbled streets of Vieux Lyon.

Rating: Thanks to France’s amazing mix of old and new, it’s no surprise the country is continuing to be popular for travellers. 5/5.

There’s more to Switzerland than the Alps

iStock credit: GoranQ

With its world-class reputation for winter sports, it can be easy to dismiss Switzerland as only a ski destination, but there is much more to the country than its extraordinary landscape.

Geneva in particular gives travellers the perfect combination of breathtaking natural beauty and a vibrant city life. The jaw-dropping Lake Geneva should be first on anyone’s to-do list when they reach the city. Views from here are simply phenomenal and offer unforgettable photo opportunities.

Similarly, Geneva is a work of art in itself, especially when it comes to the amazing medieval architecture of Notre Dame Basilica and Cathedrale de St-Pierre. Visitors can walk around the majestic Old Town for hours to marvel at the fascinating buildings, galleries and museums.

Rating: Whether you’re a skier or not, Geneva can deliver a break that is equal parts fascinating and relaxing. 4/5

iStock credit: Elenarts, MartinM303

This was a tough one to call. There is so much to appreciate in both of these magnificent countries. France has the upper hand for those looking for a break in the sun, but the sheer beauty of Switzerland cannot be overstated.

For skiers who are looking for some culture to mix in with their time on the slopes, Geneva is the perfect holiday destination. Extraordinary resorts such as Les Gets, Chamonix and Megeve are less than 90 minutes away, meaning you can easily visit the city as part of your trip and experience its incredible atmosphere. Likewise, if you’re new to winter sports, it may be worth venturing up the hills one day to give it a try and take advantage of some mesmerising views on your way.

However, France just edges out Switzerland here due to its magnificent variety of things to do. Nice is the perfect location for a relaxing week or weekend away and is only a short plane journey away, while Lyon is packed full of culture and attractions.

Although France does not have Lake Geneva, it is home to plenty of beautiful sites, including Des Hauteurs Park, which is the perfect spot for a tranquil walk or picnic. In terms of museums, Lyon does not come up short either, with Musee des Beaux-Arts and Fresque de Lyonnais giving visitors a great insight into the city’s fabled past.

In the end, it was a close battle, but France is the winner!

Adam loves to mix city breaks with relaxing retreats in the sun. He recently returned from a trip to San Francisco and Toronto and Oslo are next on his list.


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