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    by mkataoka Fodor's Editor | Posted on Nov 28, 16 at 01:31 PM
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18 days until first time in France - overwhelmed by choices!

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Hello everyone! In 18 days my new husband and I will be going to London, Paris and a little driving loop through central France for our honeymoon. We've both been to London but never to France! It will be my first time to mainland Europe at all. I have been excitedly planning this trip for months (booked the flights before our wedding and have nailed down accomodations and the rental car since the wedding, which was June 20th). Now we are 18 days out and we really need to set more definitive plans, especially in our driving tour of Burgundy, Auvergne, Bordeaux, the Loire Valley and Chartres. This is our itinerary (the *** indicates HELP needed! I have browsed but feel overwhelmed):

Fri Sept 11 - Toronto to Heathrow
Sat Sept 12- Tues Sept 15 - London (one night in Lewisham with family, two nights at myhotel Bloomsbury).
Tues Sept 15 - Eurostar to Paris in the AM, check into our first Airbnb, three nights in Montmartre near Sacre Coeur.
Fri Sept 18 - after more exploring of Paris, pick up our rental at 6pm at Orly Airport and a quick drive to our Airbnb (in a treehouse!) about 30 mins east of Fontainebleau
Sat Sept 19 - Fontainebleau in the AM, then drive through Burgundy to our next Airbnb (a chateau) in Pouilloux.***really need suggestions for wineries that are visitor friendly***
Sun Sept 20 - possibly continuing to tour Burgundy, but have to make our way to our next Airbnb, (another chateau) in Auvergne. ***suggestions for Auvergne region appreciated***
Mon Sept 21 - drive across to our Airbnb apartment in Bordeaux *** with so many ways to get there, again suggestions are appreciated!***
Tues Sept 21 - drive up to our troglodyctic cave house in the Loire Valley. ***would love your favourite spots in the Loire, places to eat, fav chateaux and sparkling wine producers***
Wed Sept 22 - after driving through more of the Loire, we arrive just before the evening meal to drop off our car a four min walk from our non-Airbnb b&b in Chartres, in order to see Chartres en lumières at night. ***dinner suggestions welcome***
Thur Sept 23 - morning train back to Paris from Chartres. Staying in the 7th at Hotel de Varenne for two nights, figure we will see more of the tourist draws and museums while within walking distance.
Sat Sept 26 - fly back to Toronto :(

Don't get me wrong, I've researched like crazy! But I think we could spend our whole two weeks in almost any of these regions, so every time I try to narrow in on what we should do, I panic! I have NEVER planned such a long trip. So excited but so nervous! My husband wants to help but it's just not his thing, and he finds it as hard to choose as I do.

Sorry this is rambling, but I am really keen to have more seasoned travelers weigh in. :) We love history, food, and breath-taking views. We won't shop too much (carry-on only) and like to go to authentic places - fewer tourist traps. Thanks!!!

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