Basketball in France
The popularity of basketball in France has only increased since the emergence of NBA superstar, three time NBA title recipient, and France native Tony Parker. Led by Parker and fellow San Antonio Spurs teammate Boris Diaw, the French Men's National team won gold at the FIBA Eurobasket championship in 2013 and are currently the reigning champions.
With Parker at the helm, the depth of skilled French basketball players in the NBA and around the world has seemed to increase both the popularity and participation of basketball in France. With two professional leagues and three amateur leagues in France, many teams ranging from all different competitive levels are scattered all throughout the country.
Paris and the North of France:
This tour focuses on the elegant capital of France, Paris. Unrivaled in its cultural and social presence, Paris offers teams a rich experience outside of basketball. A Paris trip is great for its close proximity to other interesting destinations. Excursions into historic Normandy (WWII D-Day Invasion) and the chateaus of the Loire Valley are nearby. Paris is also close enough to Belgium and the west of Germany to create a longer multi-country visit.
Lyon and the Alps:
A tour to this region gives your team access to France's second largest city, Lyon. Just an hour and a half outside Lyon is undoubtedly one of the most spectacular alpine settings in the world, the French Alps. A trip to this region is easily combined with stays in Milan, Italy and in Switzerland to form our most popular team tour, the 3 Country Alps Tour.
The South of France:
For many, this region recalls images of beautiful beaches, coastal cities, and some of the best seafood in the world. It's true that the French Riviera and Provence regions are summer tourist hot-spots. A trip south will always involve some of the classic experiences along the Mediterranean, but few realize that this region also gives easy access to mountains (Alps or Pyrenees) and neighboring countries (Italy to the east, Spain to the west).
Notable French Players:
- Tony Parker: San Antonio Spurs. 4x NBA Champion, NBA Finals MVP (2007), 6x NBA Allstar, FIBA Eurobasket MVP (2013)
- Joakim Noah: Chicago Bulls. 2x NBA Allstar, NBA Defensive Player of the Year (2014), 2x NCAA Champion
- Boris Diaw: San Antonio Spurs. NBA Champion (2014), NBA Most Improved Player (2006), French League French Player's MVP (2003)
- Nicolas Batum: Portland Trail Blazers. 2x French League Rising Star Award Recipient (2007,08)
- Ian Mahimi: Indiana Pacers. NBA Champion (2011, Dallas), French League Rising Star Recipient (2006)
- Ronny Turiaf: Minnesota Timberwolves. NBA Champion (2012, Miami)
AM: Visit the world's most famous museum, the Louvre, walk through the Tuilleries Gardens and past the Place de la Concorde to the legendary Champs Elysee, walk to the top of the Arc de Triomphe, and experience a leisurely Seine River Cruise next to the Eiffel Tower.
PM: In the evening, explore Paris on an unforgettable Bike Tour. Sites will included: Champs se Mars, Notre Dame Cathedral, Ile de la Cite, Ile Saint Louis, Berthillon's Ice Cream Parlor, Academie Francaise, Princess Diana Flame, Invalides, Ecole Militaire, Napoleon's Tomb, and more.
(Sleep near Paris)
AM: Travel south to the beautiful city of Lyon for a tour with a local guide. Sites include Vieux Lyon, a UNESCO World Heritage 14th century old town, and the Notre Dame de Fourviere Basilica.
PM: Have your first game against a local French basketball team in the late afternoon and enjoy a friendly meal together afterwards. For the rest of the evening, explore your own interests in Lyon.
(Sleep in Lyon)
AM: Continue south to Montpellier stopping at the famous Pont Du Gard to visit the amazing feat of natural beauty and Roman architecture. Spend your time hiking around the area or shopping at the small gift shops close by.
PM: Relax at some of the most beautiful beaches on the Mediterranean: Palavas Beach or La Grande Motte Beach. Finish your evening with a light practice on French courts.
(Sleep in Montpellier)
Gustav's Corner: French Expertise
Five Phrases to Talk Your Way Around Paris
Special thanks to and images copyrighted by Melanie Friese and ProActive Travel Group.