French property watch 2020: Rhône-Alpes
REGIONAL CAPITAL: Lyon DEPARTMENTS: Ain, Ardèche, Drôme, Isère, Loire, Rhône, Savoie, Haute-Savoie MAIN CITIES: Annecy, Bourg-en-Bresse, Chambéry, Grenoble, Lyon, Privas, Saint-Etienne, Valence
From the capital of design in Saint-Etienne to the Alps and the Ardèche canyons, this is a playground for lovers of the great outdoors.
Rhône-Alpes has the world’s largest ski area and even without snow is a top year-round tourist destination, with climbing and biking, riding and sailing all popular.
Fans of traditional sports are well catered-for, too. Lyon and St Etienne represent the region in French football’s Ligue 1, as well as in Europe.
The former also boasts a high-flying professional rugby team, while nearby Grenoble has a club that is pushing hard for a return to rugby’s Top 14 after dropping into the Pro D2 last season.
The region experiences colder winters and warmer summers than the UK, with average temperatures ranging from 5C in December – dragged down by high-altitude temperatures in the ski resorts – to a balmy 27C in the height of summer.
International airports in Lyon, Grenoble and St Etienne give holidaymakers from the UK’s major cities an easy gateway to the Alps and the Mediterranean, so it is easy to travel to and from this part of France.
Unsurprisingly, regional capital Lyon is ahead of the price game for property, with the median price for a typical older home in the city standing at €547,000, rising as high as €750,000 for exceptional properties in sought-after areas, figures from the Notaires de France show.
Prices for similar properties are: Grenoble (€320,000), Saint-Etienne (€199,500), Valence (€217,100) and Bourg-en-Bresse (€184,300).