Why do so many people love to go to France for vacation?
French cities, and even small ones like Perpignan, just seem to have been built to promote quality human existence. Now, I stress quality here because quantity was most certainly not the objective. You, your ten children, your Escalade, and your two-pound bags of shredded cheddar are just not going to fit in a twenty square-meter apartment. But, a cozy four-some sipping Banyuls and nibbling on Roquefort is not out of the question and rather, the gathering of folks to enjoy something really tasty is the norm and even expected.
On the way home from work, you might stop by the marché and pick up some fresh goods from your favorite vendor. You stop to chat about the new leeks that have just come in, but also you catch up a bit on each others' lives. You make your purchase and say your goodbyes knowing that you will be back again tomorrow. As you continue home, you pass half a dozen fromageries, boulangeries, and patiseries with warm lights aglow beaconing you to their wares. And while all of this can also be had in any Walmart or supermarket the world-over, it is not the same, is it? When was the last time you reveled in the plumpness of a fresh persimmon with your local Big-Box man?
We, the French-enthusiast vacationers love to go to France purely for the pleasure of walking around. Because unlike so much of the world, you can do that in French cities without being obstructed by mega-highways, parking-lot deserts, or mountains of human filth. You can wander with helpless abandon to your heart's content, or your feet's pity. You can explore the little one-of-a-kind shops and stop for a coffee in the square. And we love this. I don't know a human that doesn't. So, all snobbery aside, why don't more cities act like the French?