Living Like a Local in Southern France ─ Experiencing French Culture and Cuisine In 2024

Are you looking for a special and romantic trip for spring and summer this year? Then you should know that it is a real pleasure to stay in the south of France. Here are some of the most picturesque and romantic places in the world that should be on everyone’s bucket list.

Why is it a perfect destination?


The South of France is a great place because it’s very easy to feel and live like a local.  All the most popular places are well-connected and close to each other. Even if you choose to stay in some of the small villages.

For travel, you can book a Loire Valley tour, or visit all these beautiful places by train, bus, or taxi. If you wonder why the south of France, the answer is simple, because of culture, food, beaches, picturesque nature, architecture, music, movies…

If you want to really adopt a local lifestyle, here’s an interesting fact you should know…

According to research conducted by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in developed countries, one nation, in particular, stands out in its hedonistic habits: sleeping and enjoying food. Although the data varies from year to year, somehow french are always near the top. And it is also interesting that they are often on the lists of the most productive countries in the developed world.

It seems they are the most restful nation on the list. On average, they sleep almost nine hours a day, and that includes the afternoon rest. This is more than many other nations, especially the Japanese and Koreans who sleep the least.

If you’re planning on living like a true local you should know that in the Mediterranean, there is a ritual called a siesta, i.e. the slower rhythm of the sacred inseparable from the idea of a healthy and harmonious life, and it seems that the French live up to their reputation as hedonists and excellent gourmets.

So, our second interesting fact that you should be aware of when planning to live like a local, has to do with food…


When it comes to food, the French spend as much as two hours a day at the table. It may not seem like much, but remember that in developed countries, fast food and meals on the go have long since replaced traditional gatherings and enjoyment at the table.

Their cuisine has always been considered one of the best in the world. Their dishes are real specialties, and the importance of their gastronomy is best reflected in the fact that they have the most Michelin stars in the world. It has been on the UNESCO list of world intangible cultural heritage since 2010 due to the way the food is prepared and the types of food.

History of French Cuisine

Although today it is one of the leading gastronomy in the world, it was not always like that. It used to be considered extremely ordinary, even boring. Due to its geographical position, this country has all the prerequisites for excellent food quality. Everyone knows the class differences that have been present for centuries and that have influenced the way of life, as well as the fact that regions develop their own methods in the preparation of dishes. Recipes and techniques were exchanged, which contributed to the development of gastronomy and cooking skills.

Once the rules of food preparation were established, any subsequent change was difficult to accept. It was considered a desecration of the existing traditional cuisine. Even food such as potatoes became a part of the kitchen with great difficulty. Back in 1773, wheat was of very poor quality, and in some places, it was not even available. All attempts to use potatoes instead of wheat to make bread were rejected.

It was only after many years that potatoes came into use. For their population, food is a national identity and pride. The history of its cuisine brings us to an event from 1900 in Paris when the World Exhibition was organized. At that time, as much as one hundred million gold francs were set aside. One of the biggest feasts of that time was organized. Many believe that even today it would represent a real challenge.

So, what are the typical dishes you can find in the South? Here are some examples…


If you’re planning to visit this region, then you must love socializing and nightlife. After all, living like a local requires you to enjoy these things. As there will be a lot of eating and drinking, you’ll need to know which dish is the best for a hangover.

Soupe à l’oignon – the onion soup

It is considered a true masterpiece of their cuisine. It used to be considered food for the poor, but that changed over time, and today it is a real specialty. Onion soup is very often eaten after a night out, as it is excellent for recovering from a hangover. A true local knows this.

The second dish is all about the south and the coast.


The dish comes from Marseille and contains at least 4 different types of fish. The specialty is served seasoned with saffron sauce. It is extremely popular in the south and characteristic of that part of the country.

But there are also some typical eating habits present in every part of the country, and easily adopted by anyone who visits and wants to experience a local way of life. These habits include cheeses and wines. Wines and cheeses occupy a special place in traditional cuisine.

Hardly any meal can go without cheese. Supposedly, French cuisine has as many as 365 types of cheese, so every day you can try a different type. Their cheeses are classified according to the regions from which they originate.

So, now you know that your stay in the South will be all about relaxing, socializing, eating, drinking, and visiting beautiful places the region has to offer. Living like a local is going to be easy.