What Is the Landscape Like in France?

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France has great variety in its landscapes, from 15,000-foot mountains in the Alps to inland vineyards bordering Germany and terraced villas that dot the French Riviera along the Mediterranean Sea. The diversity of its regions have long appealed to visitors who’ve made France the most popular tourist destination in the world.

Central France consists of the Paris basin, which is surrounded by farmland and dissected by the Seine River.

The Normandy coast, facing England on the northwest coast, features chalk-white cliffs and was the scene of the Allied invasion during World War II.

The west coast includes Brittany, which is a large peninsula with the English Channel to the north and Atlantic Ocean to the south. Brittany has deep indentations from ancient seas which are now valleys. The Pyrenees form the border between France and Spain.

South-central France is dominated by the Massif Central, a region of mountains and plateau that comprises 15 percent of the country. The Massif Central is separated from the Alps by the Rhone River.

On the southeastern side of the Rhone is Provence, which has some of the earliest known sites of human habitation in Europe and has been depicted in the work of artists such as Cezanne, Van Gogh, Matisse, Renoir and Picasso.