Thinking of making a permanent move to France? Why wouldn’t you be? France is one of the most beautiful, historic, cultured, and refined countries in the whole of Europe – and the South of France the glittering jewel in this glorious crown.


Having lived and worked in the South of France now for over 30 years as a chartered property surveyor, I can tell you that what with the relaxed lifestyle, the year-round sunshine, the fine food, the beaches, art, culture, and history – I’ve never looked back. 

Here are ten reasons why living in the South of France is great. 

1. 300 Days of Sunshine

That’s right. The sun shines on the South of France pretty much right around the calendar – and you can happily visit the beach in shorts, flip-flops, and swimwear from May to October. Even winters are mild – averaging between about 12 and 15 degrees centigrade. A glorious climate for endless outdoor fun. 

2. French Food Is to Die For

From regional specialties to fresh market produce and top tier restaurants, French food is second to none. When you live in France, all your favourites from French cuisine – boeuf bourguignon, cassoulet, coq au vin, potatoes dauphinoise – become delicious daily staples.

3. Some of the Best Wines in Europe

Nearly all the local wines are excellent – and you may even choose to live in a world-class wine region, such as Languedoc-Roussillon, where you can enjoy many wine-tasting events throughout the summer and autumn. Exquisite.

Map of Languedoc-Roussillon wines in the South of France

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4. Brilliant Healthcare

The French healthcare system is recognised as being one of the very best in the world – ranked 7th (above the UK in 10th) according to the 2021 edition of the CEOWORLD Healthcare Index. Offering universal coverage for all citizens, regardless of age, income, or status, and largely financed by government health insurance, French healthcare is efficient, thorough, and accessible. 

5. Work-Life Balance

The official working week in France is capped at 35 hours. Anything over that is considered overtime, and you get paid more accordingly. In addition, French citizens get five weeks paid holiday a year, plus 13 public holidays. Plenty of time to enjoy family life, even when you’re in full-time employment. 

6. Excellent Public Transport 

France has a fantastic public transportation system, the pinnacle of which is the extensive train network that includes high-speed trains that bolt you across the country at 200mph, plus regional trains connecting towns and cities. A car-free lifestyle is most certainly possible in the South of France.


Great Public transport in the South of France

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7. Nature, Culture, and Activities 

From beautiful nature reserves, endless stretches of golden beaches along the French Riviera, the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean Sea, water parks, museums, and art galleries – life in France is nothing short of a rich and varied adventure. 

8. Ski Resorts 

While the South of France might be best known for its glorious coastline, it also boasts several top-notch ski resorts that can be easily reached by train. These are ideal for weekend breaks – and are as beautiful as they come. 

9. Higher Education Is Affordable 

France is famous for its affordable education. The French government subsidises higher education, meaning tuition fees in French universities are remarkably low – often just a few hundred Euros a year. You or members of your family can pursue a degree while learning French at the same time. 

10. Outstanding Properties 

From luxury villas to rural properties, inner city apartments and buy-to-let opportunities, the South of France is awash with fantastic property to suit all tastes, budgets, and lifestyles. Our recent insider’s guide reveals the best places to buy property in the South of France.

Charles Mackintosh South of France Property Surveyor

Living in the South of France is, indeed, great. For more information on where to buy property in this glorious part of the world, Charles Mackintosh is at your service. With over three decades’ experience living and working in the region, Charles provides highly regarded English language property surveys and advice for British buyers. Get in touch today.