Tiqets’ annual tourism awards series, the Remarkable Venue Awards, shines a spotlight on museums and attractions that are moving the industry forward and providing incredible visitor experiences.
The winners are decided based on real reviews by over 1.1 million customers, as well as a panel of industry experts. Panelists for the French edition included Jean-René Morice (Director of ESTHUA), Laurent Queige (General Director of Welcome City Lab), and Jean-Pierre Pinheiro (President of Adonet).
Read on to discover this year’s winners across seven different categories, and learn what makes these venues the best attractions in France.
Best Hidden Gem: Le Klub Extraordinaire
“A truly atypical approach to finding your way.”
– Emilia, France
This truly unique hidden gem can’t be contained to a single place: Le Klub Extraordinaire is a wandering wonderland that can be found in the countryside or in the city, at major expositions or at small local events all across the Centre-Val de Loire region.
Le Klub Extraordinaire was created to address one of society’s great challenges: a large number of people are unemployed, despite many job vacancies remaining unfilled. How did this happen, and how can this paradox be resolved?
The purpose of Le Klub Extraordinaire is to empower people by allowing them to rediscover their own value, their confidence, and their self-knowledge; a trip to this unique venue can be quite literally life-changing. Visitors can enjoy an immersive experience in which they’ll discover the true wealth of their own talents, and learn more about their own motivations and desires.
Deservedly voted as 2022’s Best Hidden Gem in France, this amazing venue lets you discover the greatest hidden gem of all: yourself!
Most Innovative Venue: Chasseurs de Tornades (Parc du Futuroscope)
“Superb experience… The attractions are at the cutting edge of technology! Lots of improvements, changes, and novelties in the last 30 years. See you soon for our next visit.”
– Martine, France
Innovation is about finding ways to be creative and unique that are also modern and up-to-date. This award is about spotlighting museums and attractions that have found new and original ways to appeal to customers.
Parc du Futuroscope has been on the cutting edge of technological innovation ever since it first opened to the public in 1987. It blends traditional theme park fun with high-tech multimedia effects and an eye for spectacular cinematography, and regularly updates its rides and attractions to make sure the park continues to push the boundaries of what we think is possible.
The park’s latest innovation is Chasseurs de Tornades, or ‘Tornado Chasers’, a circular theater in which visitors sit on a rotating platform that can tilt in all directions, replicating the effects of being caught in a whirling tornado (while staying perfectly safe the entire time).
Guests to this incredible new experience will be able to follow the story of a meteorologist/tornado hunter who embarks on a hectic adventure to follow a huge natural event. Special effects including powerful wind and pyrotechnics (as well as a special surprise) bring the cyclone to life before your eyes!
Most Remarkable Venue: Fondation Louis Vuitton
“It was an extraordinary experience … The architecture did not disappoint; it was overwhelmingly beautiful.”
– Susan, United States
Every year, the Most Remarkable Venue award goes to the venue that is the most popular and top-rated with visitors, based on customer reviews on Tiqets.com.
One of the most common themes in the reviews for this spectacular museum is astonishment at how the Fondation Louis Vuitton looks from the outside; architect Frank Gehry created this modern Parisian icon to resemble a boat in full sail, and the effect can be quite literally breathtaking for first-time visitors.
With consistently updated exhibitions featuring work by artists ranging from Claude Monet to Marina Abramović, the museum is as thought-provoking and awe-inspiring on the inside as its famous exterior would suggest. Having only opened its doors to the public in 2014, Fondation Louis Vuitton is on its way to entering an exclusive club of Parisian powerhouses representing the peak of international art and culture.
Best Museum: Cinémathèque Française
“A tremendous and beautiful exhibition, celebrating the outstanding career of the incredible Romy Schneider. It was a pleasure and privilege to learn more about this genius woman.”
– Sandra, France
The Best Museum award recognises the best museum or art gallery in the country, based on customer reviews on Tiqets.com.
Another work of architectural art by Frank Gehry, the Cinémathèque Française is home to one of the largest archives of film-related objects and documents in the world.
This unique museum’s temporary exhibitions provide insights into some of the greatest stories told in film, with international cinema as well as French classics being featured on a regular basis.
It’s not often that you can combine a museum visit with a film screening inside of some spectacular Gehry-designed architecture, which explains why so many visitors voted this to be the best attraction in France.
Best Attraction: Puy du Fou
“Wonderful, jaw-dropping shows and exhibitions, stunning sets. This is my second visit and I was still amazed.“
– Patrick, Ireland
The Best Attraction award honours the best attraction, from theme parks and zoos to guided visits of cultural locations. It recognises venues that stand out for their appeal to all types of visitors.
Puy du Fou welcomes more than two million visitors every year, making it one of the most popular theme parks in Europe. This remarkable venue is without a doubt one of the best attractions in France for history lovers, with knights, gladiators, vikings, musketeers, and more all putting on incredibly entertaining and immersive shows.
Watch swooping falcons in the park’s famous birds of prey show, be mesmerised by the dazzlingly illuminated fountains, or simply relax and enjoy the quieter parts of the park (safely away from any viking raids or jousting duels) as you explore the lush rose gardens or watch a family of deer stroll around the paddocks.
Best Landmark: Basilique Cathédrale de Saint-Denis
“I would describe our visit with three words: amazing, magnificent, beautiful. Being there left me speechless.“
– Alexia, France
The Best Landmark category recognises venues such as cathedrals, churches (or any place of worship), castles, natural landmarks, historical or iconic buildings, and observation decks.
This ancient cathedral is one of the most renowned landmarks in France, due to its centuries-long history as the resting place of the nation’s monarchs. Not only is the Basilique Cathédrale de Saint-Denis the world’s oldest Gothic cathedral, it contains the remains of 43 kings, 32 queens, and other historical figures.
It’s one of the best attractions in France for anyone who wants to feel a personal connection to the nation’s history; Marie Antoinette, Charles Martel, Catherine de Medici, and Louis XIV are all interred here.
In addition to the church’s historical value, it’s also an incredibly imposing and beautiful building. With elaborate Gothic designs on the outside and stained glass windows that illuminate the interior with rainbow-coloured beams, it’s impossible not to feel awed by the splendour and significance of this iconic French landmark.
Best Onsite Experience: Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire
“Excellent. The staff were helpful and charming. Particularly with two ladies with some difficulties with walking … Well done with your choice of staff – both in the garden exhibition and the Château.”
– Joanne, France
This category is focused on recognising the venue that offers a truly remarkable onsite experience for its visitors. Looking at the reviews for the Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire, it becomes immediately apparent that a visit here is something special.
If you close your eyes and picture a fairy-tale French castle, there’s a very good chance you’re picturing the Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire. As well as a rich history dating back over 1,000 years, this idyllic retreat has lots of contemporary surprises, from glass installations over quiet, reflective ponds to unexpected arches and mysterious gateways in the forest.
What also stands out in customer reviews is the incredible care and professionalism shown by the staff. Many visitors praise the onsite workers for their kindness and willingness to help make the experience a once-in-a-lifetime memory for people from all walks of life.