Euro 2016 is finally here, and football fans from all over Europe will be making the journey to France for a road trip to remember.
But in a country as diverse and rich in culture as France, the trip is about more than just the football. For those driving in France during Euro 2016, the drives themselves will be a great part of the experience.
So we’ve chosen 5 of the best drives for football fans to consider whilst following their team during Euro 2016.
Travel Time: 8 hours
It’d be worthwhile splitting up this long cross-country jaunt from north to south-west so you can soak up some of France’s most breathtaking cities and countryside at your own pace.
Starting in the historic northern gem Lille, you’ll pass through Lens which will host the all-important England v Wales game on June 16, before hitting France’s glorious capital.
Driving through Paris can actually be a unique way to see the city. We’d recommend driving around at night time when the roads are quieter and Paris’s famous landmarks and medieval streets are lit up. Here you can really soak up the best of the tournament’s atmosphere with a visit to a fan-zone under the Eiffel Tower or even at a match at the Stade de France.
Between Paris and Bordeaux are an array of beautiful countryside towns and villages, worth visiting especially for the food and drink. Try Niort, Poitiers and Cognac for a brewery tour.
Travel Time: 6 hours
For wine-buffs, Bordeaux is a must thanks to its famous vineyards. From here, this route will take you through the scenic south-western region of France and across the southern coast to the port-city of Marseilles.
Marseilles is France’s second largest city and is incredibly rich in culture and nightlife, so expect lots of tournament buzz.
In between the two is the city of Toulouse, which will also play host to some big tournament matches. Stop off to go to a game or the city’s fan-zone.
Travel Time: 5 hours
Whilst you could shave a good two hours off this route by travelling further inland, we’d recommend hugging the coastline for a great drive through the heart of the French Riviera. With its emphatic scenery and rocky coastline, this is the perfect road trip for any car enthusiast.
Hitting glamourous hotspots such as Saint-Tropez and Cannes on the way, this route will also take you through some of France’s prettiest and most historic villages – with an abundance of great places to eat and drink on the way.
And once you reach Nice, host to some big matches at Euro 2016, you’ll get chance to relax and recharge the batteries on some of the best beaches in France.
Travel Time: 7.5 hours
Another great road trip for car lovers, this route from Nice to the historical city of Lyon incorporates France’s most famous driving road: Route Napoleon. Travelling through this historic mountain pass adds a good three hours onto the journey time of the quickest route to Lyon, but the striking scenery and driving experience of Route Napoleon makes it a worthwhile road trip.
Route Napoleon’s changing gradients stretch through flowing hills and sweep around corners, resulting in amazing views and one thrilling drive.
Eventually you’ll reach Lyon, a beautiful city engulfed in history and incredible architecture which will play host to one of Euro 2016’s semi-finals.
Travel Time: 6 hours
About 50km south-west of Lyon is Saint-Etienne, an eastern-central city that travelling England fans will be visiting for their game against Slovakia on June 20.
The drive from Saint-Etienne up to Paris is particularly worth doing providing you travel via Dijon and Troyes.
This is an incredibly scenic route through the many beautiful fields and vineyards of the Burgundy and Champagne regions of France, home to some of France’s most traditional architecture and cultural heritage.
And with Paris the destination, who knows? Maybe your road trip of France will end with you watching your team lift the cup in the Euro 2016 final at the Stade de France on July 10.