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Trip Report Montpellier, Gorge du Tarn, Aveyron, Dordogne and Toulouse

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We returned from France Thursday night. Of course, I must thank the Fodorites who have given great advice and written wonderful trip reports. All this information was used to create our itinerary. Thanks especially to Stu Dudley, St. Cirq, Carlux, Images2, Just Retired and TPAYT.

The cast of characters: Four couples. Yes, you read that right! 8 of us! Ages range from 66 - 74. We had traveled with one of the couples two years ago. The other two couples had not been to France before this trip. Traveling with 8 people had me a bit concerned, but I need not have worried. The trip was everything we hoped it would be.

Places we stayed:

Hotel du Palais in Montpellier. www.hoteldupalais-montpellier.fr
A lovely hotel in a great location. Wonderful owners. Thanks, Stu, for mentioning
this in your itinerary.

Chateau de La Caze near Ste. Énimie. www.chateaudelacaze.com
Wow. What a setting! Again, thank you, Stu.

Hotel Le Vieux Pont in Belcastel. www.hotelbelcastel.com
Again, what a setting! I got this idea from Images2.

Les Cordeliers in Sarlat. www.hotelsarlat.com
A return visit for us. Great owners, great location, wonderful breakfast.

Grand Hotel de l'Opera in Toulouse. www.grand-hotel-opera.com
I must thank Tpayt for mentioning this one. Truly, a grand hotel. Great common areas.


Best app for trip: one of our fellow travelers suggested we get CoPilot France for our iphone or ipad. This worked SO WELL! Much better than our Garmin did on our last trip. Maybe we are technologically challenged, but we were unable to put it on our Samsung Galaxy phone. But it works like a dream on an iphone or newer ipad. I still had my Michelin paper maps (which we did refer to), but I cannot sing the praises of CoPilot France loud enough. The cost is just under $30.00.

Flights: one couple left 4 days before the rest of us. They started with a quick trip to Normandy and met the rest of us in Montpellier. The rest of us flew Air France from Kansas City to Detroit, Paris, then Montpellier. We returned home from Toulouse, to Paris, Detroit and then Kansas City. One couple was able to fly Business Class. The rest of us decided to pop for Air France's Premium Economy. I cannot remember how much more it cost, but whatever it was, it was well worth it. Not only are the seats much roomier, but we were allowed Priority Boarding and Priority Check-in. This was a huge advantage in Toulouse for our flight home. There was a very, very long line for checking baggage. I am unsure we would have made our flight if we had waited in that line. There were other perks as well. I do not know about other airlines, but Premium Economy on Air France is an excellent value.

Next: Montpellier and the Best Meal of the Trip

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