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France 2023- Final Itin (that will be changed X number of times:)))

France 2023- Final Itin (that will be changed X number of times:)))

Old Aug 5th, 2022, 08:33 PM
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France 2023- Final Itin (that will be changed X number of times:)))

Here's my "final" itin (that I am mentally changing already

- arrive at MRS and drive to Remy
- 4 nights at St. Remy (base)
- drive to Nice; 2 nights there (been there before, so this would be just a refresher).
- drive to Dijon; 4 nights there.
- drop off rental car; train to Paris
- 3 nights there

- fly home from CDG

We def want to go to Burgundy to meet up with friends there, On a way from Cote d'Azur to Burgundy, I feel I would have to do an overnight stop. Studied the map and I see available routes are either through Northwest Italy or Southeast France (motorway or Napoleonic road). Def interested in a scenic route and would not mind staying just do not know ehre (Italy or France). Also, have been toying with idea of flipping Cote d'Azur with Provence.

What do you think of this crazy plan, you fine people?

Thanks in advance!
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 07:01 AM
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What time of year is this? You need to spend some time in Marseille. Perhaps eliminate Nice?
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 07:33 AM
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Spring of next year. Marseille - no go. Bad experience many years ago = bad memories.
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 07:44 AM
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Flip Nice & Provence. It is only a 4 hr drive from Avignon to Dijon. Most of the route, once you get out of Provence/Drome, is not scenic. Lots of commerce & nuclear power plants.

See attached

Stu Dudley
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 07:50 AM
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@ Stu - thanks as always. I have been toying with the idea of "flipping" as I clearly see that on motorway Avignon to Dijon is fairly straightforward ~4 or so hours. Here are my concerns and thoughts though: I would not want to drive more than necessary on my arrival day (under 1 hr to St Remy vs 2 hrs to Nice). Also, I would rather take a more scenic route to Dijon through the French or Italian Alps so Avignon- Dijon motorway straight line trip becomes a moot point. Would you agree? TiA!
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 08:10 AM
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You could consider taking the train to Nice when you arrive at MRS. There is a TGV & TER that only take around 2h40. And you won't want to the car until you leave Nice anyway, so it will save you those rental day costs.
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 08:12 AM
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I would like to have the car from the get go (landing) for personal reasons. Thanks.
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 09:10 AM
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""I would rather take a more scenic route to Dijon through the French or Italian Alps so Avignon- Dijon motorway straight line trip becomes a moot point. Would you agree? TiA!""

I would do the autoroute - unless you take 2 nights to do the Alps. You don't have 2 or even 1 night to spare, IMO. If you want to go from St Remy to Dijon - you have the steep Vercors section of the Alps. You will drive 20 mph along very steep gorges with shear drops & lots of tunnels. Beautiful - but slow. If you depart from Nice and take the Grande Route des Alpes it will take 2-3 nights before you head west at Grenoble, Chambery, or Annecy - and then you still have a ways to go to get to Dijon.

See attached Alps itinerary

Stu Dudley
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Alps.doc (69.0 KB, 12 views)
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 10:12 AM
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@ JPIE and everyone in the know- even though we wanted to get the car from the get-go, I am now considering taking a train MRS to NICE. However, I do not see a single train that takes ~2.40. All the trains that I see are longer and not direct. Am I missing something? TiA.
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 10:35 AM
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https://reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/qu...881.1659810745

Use a date in September. May be a different schedule on weekends

Stu Dudley
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 12:17 PM
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Drop Nice, then here are some possibilities:

- arrive at MRS and drive to Aix-en-Provence (30 min)
_ 2 nights in AIX
- 4 nights at St. Remy (base). Drive to St Remy via Hill Towns of the LUBERON (Lourmarin-Bonnieux-Roussillon-Gordes etc).
- drive to Dijon; 4 nights there.
- drop off rental car; train to Paris
- 3 nights there
- fly home from CDG
https://goo.gl/maps/kGWYk5YSDXjaSRsDA

- arrive at MRS and drive to Lourmarin via Aix-en-Provence (1 hour)
_ 2 nights in Lourmarin
- 4 nights at St. Remy (base). Drive to St Remy via Hill Towns of the LUBERON (Bonnieux-Roussillon-Gordes etc).
- drive to Dijon; 4 nights there.
- drop off rental car, train to Paris
- 3 nights there
- fly home from CDG
https://goo.gl/maps/NcGvZmuKdpVLXiuv9



- arrive at MRS and drive to Remy (30 min)
- 4 nights at St. Remy (base)
- drive to LYON for 2 nights
- drive to Dijon; 4 nights there.
- drop off rental car; train to Paris
- 3 nights there
- fly home from CDG

- arrive at MRS and drive to St Remy
- 4 nights at St. Remy (base)
- drive to ANNECY via Grenoble for 2 nights
- drive to Dijon; 4 nights there.
- drop off rental car; train to Paris
- 3 nights there
- fly home from CDG
https://goo.gl/maps/LRDiKu4kE1Rchpgp7
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 06:59 PM
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If you go to Aix, the food has much Moroccan influence and the Tajines are simply wonderful.
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 07:08 PM
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Dugi Otok - hvala vam!
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Old Aug 6th, 2022, 07:44 PM
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Since you are not spending any time in Marseille, can you fly into Nice instead?
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 08:00 AM
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@ joannyc- this is what I have been doing for the past 24 hrs ).....Cumulatively 8 hours on the phone/hold with airlines. Anyway, flying to NCE now!!

- 3 nights in Nice (in Cagnes-sur-mer actually, as I have IHG points I need to burn and there is a nice and new upscale property). Exploring Nice and environs. (Picking up rental car on 2nd or 3rd day).
- Drive to Provence, stopping in various (tbd) interesting place.
- 4 nights in St Remy. Exploring Provence.
- Drive to Dijon, Burgundy. Not stopping anywhere because plan on taking fast (yet boring) motorway.
- 3 nights in Dijon. Exploring Dijon.
- Drop-off rental car and TGV to Paris OR drive to Paris and drop-off rental at Gare Lyon (still undecided)....*
-
3 nights in Paris.

* I know lots of folks would suggest taking a train. But since we are not light packers (personal circumstances) , I feel like between costs of train: tickets costs + dependence on schedule + schlepping all the luggage (onto the train) + pretty fast and relaxing ride though vs car: gas and tolls costs, "indepence", easier with luggage, traffic enroute. Not sure which option to pick. But I feel this is more of a personal decision.

Now I think this itinerary looks much more "clean" and "organized".

@ All - thank you SO MUCH for all your advice, thoughts and insights. I have read and "absorbed" all of them!!

Last edited by totallyi2009; Aug 7th, 2022 at 08:20 AM.
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 08:08 AM
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This is a much better plan I think-congrats on the re-route to NCE! It will make your life a lot easier for the areas that interest you I think.

I do hear you about car versus train. Since we stay a fairly long time on our European visits we probably have a bit heavier luggage than some. But honestly, these days we also bring laptops, etc. that make train voyage a bit more challenging.

Have a great time-it sound like a fun trip!
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 08:11 AM
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I meant to mention that, back in my work days, I spent a lot of time in Cagnes sur Mer and St Laurent du Var staying at the IHG Holiday Inn Nice - Saint Laurent du Var actually. While it isn't in the "downtown" Nice area, I always liked my stays there.
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 08:13 AM
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Cagnes sur Mer is a pretty crappy city, IMO.

Stu Dudley
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 09:04 AM
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Stu - I understand, but crappy or not, I need to use those IHG certs and new Indigo looks like a nice little hotel. Also, this is centrally located to most things in the area. Sure, it'd be nicer or better to stay in the Nice proper but circumstances dictate otherwise.
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 10:06 AM
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It may be centrally located - but you'll need to get into the car, bus, or train to go anywhere enjoyable. Maybe even restaurants - depending on how important nice dinners are to you. My eyes are usually closed while at hotels.

Stu Dudley
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