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France-Driving and Exploring(Loire to Provence')

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Stu Dudley and all France Experts,

Since my first post, I have taken your advice and completely overhauled our trip. I confess that this is a big trip for us. This is our first trip to France. We want to see and do as much as we can, but per everyone’s instructions we have slowed it down considerably. The more I read the more I don’t know. This trip will give us a great overview of this country, and hopefully someday we can return to bask in the area we love the most.

Please advise of how to manage each area: favorite stops, restaurants, realistic distance management, etc.

Arrival in France and take the train to Chartres. Overnight in Chartres. We should have some time the first afternoon and morning to see the Cathedral. Rent car in Chartres, drive to Amboise. We might be able to see a Chateau that afternoon. We will get to our lodging, have dinner, and maybe go to the sound and light show at Chambord. The next day we will visit a couple of the Chateau in the area (recommendations?). We will spend the second night in Amboise and then drive to the area around Limoges.

We plan to lodge in a B&B around Oradour-sur- Glane. I think we will have some time that afternoon. We will also have the next morning. Then we will drive to Sarlat, where we have lodging in a B&B for 5 nights. We want to do the canoe thing, any recommendations. I have read some of Rick Steve’s itineraries for the area as well as Fodors. Give me your thoughts.

We will leave Sarlat and check out Rocamadour, Cahors, whatever we think is the best. We will spend the night somewhere between Sarlat and Carcassonne. This is where I really need some help.

After our night on the road to Carcassonne, we will arrive there late in the day. We will spend three nights. This is with the idea we can see Carcassonne, maybe the area around Minerve, perhaps the Galamus Gorges, Narbonne????????

We will then drive from Carcassonne to St. Remy. We will spend five nights here. We hope to see some of this area and I know that five days isn’t enough. But again we are trying to make this an overview. Again I have read the Rick Steves’ itinerary for the area and some on Fodors. How would you plan this time in Provence’?

We will then take the train from Arles back to Paris. There we will take the river cruise to the Normandy area.

Whew! I have worked on this, tyring to read and research, just a lot to learn. I respect and appreciate your advice. I apologize if I misspelled something or if I am not accurate in my assumptions. Thank you for your time!

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