A bonbon-themed tour of France: the sweetest places to visit

A bonbon-themed tour of France: the sweetest places to visit. Pictured: Montélimar's nougat museum.
A bonbon-themed tour of France: the sweetest places to visit. Pictured: Montélimar's nougat museum.

From Aix-en-Provence to Montélimar and Alsace to Seine-et-Marne, Connexion tours France’s delicious bonbon hotspots in search of the sweetest places to visit...

Around the country in sweet treats

The French love sweet things – from breakfast croissants to delicate after-dinner chocolates. Apparently, 80% of the country’s delicious bonbons are eaten by adults... quite rightly, too. A sweet treat tour is a fabulous way to explore France – with or without children – and finding out their history and how they are made just makes it all better.

Some traditional family-run confectionary companies in France have set up their own ‘museums’ explaining their history. To be honest, you are likely to be disappointed if you are expecting something along the lines of the Louvre. But, lower your cultural expectations a little, and you are in for an unexpected treat.

Some ‘museums’ are workshops, others little more than gantries overlooking the factory. Some are just one room. Many simply explain the firm’s history and give a few details about the sweets they make – but they are all strangely attractive, with their little displays, and somehow make buying sweets more of an event. Many are free, and in Montélimar – where you do have to pay – the entrance tickets are edible. All are worth exploring, especially if you have a sweet tooth, and prefer to know the provenance of your empty calories. Try to visit on weekday mornings, if you can, when production is most likely to be in progress.

Calling all those with sweet-tooths: here's where to find the juiciest, sweetest melons in France this summer

First stop: Aix-en-Provence

Calissons (little hugs) are made from a paste of ground almonds and candied fruit. Photo by Régis Cintas Flores.
Calissons (little hugs) are made from a paste of ground almonds and candied fruit. Photo by Régis Cintas Flores.

Elegant, cultured, leisurely Aix-en-Provence has many attractions, from shady boulevards to a rich cultural offering. But the sweetest treat of all lurks ...

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