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10 nights in France

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I've loved the feedback in this forum, and am posting for the first time to get feedback specific to our trip. My husband and I are planning a 1st anniversary trip to France in October. We will have 10 nights. I have been to Paris before, 4 years ago; he has never been.

I have read so much about not cramming in too much, but Paris is a MUST, and we'd really love to get at a taste of Provence as well as the Cote d'Azur. I know we could spend weeks in each, but 10 nights is all we've got and do not forsee ourselves getting back here any time soon...so we'd really like to hit all 3. I'd most appreciate any helpful insight into how to maximize our time through efficient travel, etc....rather than arguments against hitting all 3 locations. :)

We are currently considering the following travel itinerary:
10/13 Fly out of Boston
10/14 Land in Nice; 3 nights stay in Nice;
10/17 Travel to Provence; stay 3 nights; base ourselves in the Luberon (perhaps St. Saturnin, per suggestion from Stu's itinerary!); we will rent a car.
10/20 Train to Paris; 4 nights in Paris
10/24 Fly back to Boston

A few specific questions:
*Mu husband is very interested in Marseille. Would you recommend a day trip from Provence, or cutting a night elsewhere to stay one night there? We are also open to flying into Marseille, if it makes the itinerary flow more smoothly.
*Travel from Nice-Provence. We were thinking train from Nice to Avignon or Aix, rent car, drive to base, return car to same spot before train to Paris. Is this the most efficient way to do it, or are we better to rent the car in Nice and drive to our base from there?
*If we were to spend 1 "day trip" from Nice, what would you suggest and why? We have already ruled out Monaco thanks to plenty of feedback on the forums!
*Would we do ourselves a disservice by not spending any time in Avignon or Aix? We envision the Provence leg as the "country" portion of the trip and the drives and meandering around villages sounds so much more appealing.
* Any recommendations for an romantic outing in any of these locations would be welcome! (Is it even possible for anything to NOT be romantic in France?)

As it seems this info is often requested.... our primary interests are food, wine, and simply taking in the scenery and culture. Our favorite thing to do on vacation is go for a drive or walk with no destination in mind, and see where we end up. I have been to many of the major museums in Paris and my husband is not insistent upon seeing them. Though we both appreciate art, it is not a focus for us on this trip. While we like to stay off the beaten path a bit, we of course are open to "must see" landmarks!

Thank you in advance for sharing your experiences and thoughts!

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