2 Wks in France Itinerary

Old Jun 8th, 2022, 04:31 PM
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2 Wks in France Itinerary

Hi there,

We have a trip booked for the beginning of September to France for 2 weeks. So far we only have our flights booked (traveling in and out of Paris). We've been back and forth on the itinerary and deciding where to go and how much time to spend in these areas, and we've so far landed on the below itinerary. We originally had planned to visit Lyon, but Ive heard a lot of people say its not worth it after going to Paris (which we've been to a few times before and love), so we replaced with Dijon/surrounding areas (for now). We were also thinking of Amboise/ visiting the Loire Valley but doesnt seem like it makes sense with our journey.

We've only been to Paris and none of the other areas, so would love anyone's recommendations who are familiar with these areas. We are also planning on a combo of traveling via train and renting a car. Also, we are in our mid thirties, and are want to have a mix of visiting places with high energy with ample amount of things to do during the day/night (paris), with also seeing more of the country and visiting wineries, smaller towns, and beautiful scenery.

Sept 6th-10th Paris (5 night stay)
Sept 10th-12th- Dijon/ Beaune (2 nights)
Sept 12-13th- Annecy (1 night)
Sept 13th- 17th- Provence Area (Avignon, St Remy, Gordes, luberon) (5 nights)
Sept 17th-20th- Aix en Provence (3 nights) _ day trip to Cassis?
Sept 20th- travel back to Paris (TGV from Aix or Avignon to paris)
Sept 20th-21- final night in paris
Sept 21- Flight back home
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Old Jun 8th, 2022, 04:53 PM
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You did not state how you plan to get around to visit all these places - car, train, bus, guided tours, etc. For example, Dijon/Beaune on Sat, Sun, & Mon. Non food shops in Dijon will be closed on Sunday all day, & Monday morning. And the city will be kinda dead then. Somewhat the same for Beaune. If you plan to take the TGV from Paris to Dijon on Saturday, currently the rental office for Europcar is closed on Sat & Sun. I assume the other rental places will be closed also. So you might be "trapped" with no car, and in cities where shops you might want to visit will be closed. Personally, I would skip Dijon/Beaune & head to Provence & spend more time there. Annecy for 1/2 day isn't really worth the effort, IMO.

Sept 16 & 17 is Patrimoine weekend - so looks for some "normally closed" places to be open. Visit the tourist office to get schedules.

See attached

Stu Dudley

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Old Jun 9th, 2022, 06:38 AM
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You'll also be in Aix when the shops will be closed for more than half the time you're there. Aix is my wife's favorite shopping city (after Paris)!!

Stu Dudley
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Old Jun 10th, 2022, 07:34 AM
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Maitaitom has a trip report from Paris covering Patrimoine weekend that may be of interest (I can't post URLs yet but Google those keywords, it should come up).

Given your flight dates I'd probably go immediately to another region upon arrival in Paris, then return to Paris on the 15th and stay till your return flight. That would let you take full advantage of all the special openings, and you won't be lacking for Sunday options in Paris. Have fun no matter what you decide!
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Old Jun 10th, 2022, 07:45 AM
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When you restructure your itinerary to account for closure days, you may want to do as we have done. We use closure days for travel and/or scenic drives. By the way, including days of the week in your itinerary post was quite valuable. Wish other posters did the same.
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Old Jun 10th, 2022, 09:02 AM
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In all of our trips to France, we always begin with minimum 5 days in Paris, then choose another direction adding 1-3 weeks more. An early trip was Paris-Nice via train where we explored by rental car the Riviera. Another was Paris-Champagne-Dijon-Loire via rental car. Another was Paris-Normandy in counterclockwise direction, ending up in Mont St.M, all by rental car. Another was month-loong Paris-Limoges-Bordeaux-Dordogne-Toulouse-Provence via rental car from Bordeaux. This year beginning in Belgium for week before Paris and then down to Nice over 3 wks.

For two weeks, I would just skip the Dijon-Beune-Annecy leg and TGV right to Avignon getting car there. Leave Dijon for including Reims, Epernay, Dijon, Beaune and Loire, circling back up to Paris all by car. Or skip Provence and change itinerary to avoid day closures in Burgundy/Loire.
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Old Jun 10th, 2022, 06:48 PM
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Ah yes, these are great points, I didnt take into account weekend closures. I think we will skip Dijon and that area, and maybe just extend our trip in Paris and take some day trips from there.
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Old Jun 11th, 2022, 07:06 AM
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You can easily pick up a TGV at CDG airport and head straight to Provence. I would continue with your Provence/Aix plans then go to Paris for the second half of your trip. The Patrimoine weekend is more fun in Paris-one year we took a "secret" tour of the Paris metro with the RATP to visit phantom metro stops and behind the scenes locales (you need to book this online about a month in advance when the reservation window opens for Patrimoine Weekend).
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