Visitors wanting a truly Frankish experience can travel to Francia, the heartland of the Carolingian Empire. Spanning from the Loire in the south to the Rhine in the east, Francia contained the majestic forests of Brie and the Île-de-France. Along the North Sea coast, the Franks raised powerful war horses and delicate wool sheep that fueled the Carolingian economy.
One feature that travelers will recognize from modern-day Europe is the Alps, which divided Francia from Lombardy. Standing as sentinels between the northern and southern portions of the empire, the Alps posed a challenge to all passers, impenetrable and awe-inspiring.
For a more urban experience, head to Aachen, the center of Charlemagne’s power and home to his palace at Aix-la-Chapelle. Located in the lowlands of modern Germany, you will find no better example of Carolingian art and architecture throughout the empire. The “Rome of the North” is sure to impress as you explore its sprawling streets.
Visitors to the coastal parts of Francia should expect moderate weather year-round and high humidity. Inland and in the Alps, humidity will be lower with more extreme fluctuations in temperature. Pack layers, and be prepared to change throughout the day if you plan to visit here!
For more on weather and climate, check out our survival guide for the Carolingian Empire.
Bruno Monginoux, “Chaos in Apremont Canyon,” https://www.flickr.com/photos/landscape_photography/253534922 (Accessed November 21, 2017).
Zermatt photos, “Matterhorn from Zermatt,” https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Matterhorn_from_Zermatt.jpg (Accessed November 22, 2017).