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4 Nights in Provence or Dordogne -- Base City and Itinerary Question

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4 Nights in Provence or Dordogne -- Base City and Itinerary Question

Old Sep 22nd, 2010, 02:05 PM
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4 Nights in Provence or Dordogne -- Base City and Itinerary Question

I will have four nights and three full days available to visit a French region prior to flying to London in mid-April. I have previously been to Paris, so I would like see another part of France. I realize I don't have alot of time so I will keep my itinerary focus on a small area. Our interests are general exploration of quaint towns, hiking or biking routes in the area, casual local shopping and restaurants . We will fly directly into Dordogne region or Provence and rent a car for our stay. Given I only have three full days, I would like to focus on the area highlights. Where would be a good place to base my self in these areas -- I've read of Sarlat and St, Remy? Please any other recommendations or itineraries to spend three days in either Dordogne or Provence is greatly appreciated.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2010, 05:00 PM
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Why would you fly? You can get to Avignon in under 3 hours on the TVG and if you get a PREM fare can do it for 20-30 euros. I'd forget the Dordogne. Your time is too short and the connections are too complicated (you CAN fly into the Dordogne, but go ahead and check on the options and the prices and I think you'll abandon that idea). You can see a reasonable amount of stuff around Avignon in Provence in 3 days - the same is not possible, considering travel time, in the Dordogne.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2010, 06:15 PM
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StCirg thanks for your reply, I can connect on my flight from Minneapolis to Provence or Dordogne for less than a train fare -- it will save time for us. Appears you suggest a base of Avignon or near by?
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Old Sep 22nd, 2010, 06:43 PM
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Hi KenP,
We absolutely loved the Dordogne last year but I have to agree with StCirq, that three days is just not enough time. I would wait until you can spend closer to a week there.

We stayed in St Remy last year and found it to be a good base for exploring the region. We loved the morning market in St Remy also. Allow most of the morning for it.

Michele
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Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 05:52 AM
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' I can connect on my flight from Minneapolis to Provence or Dordogne for less than a train fare -- it will save time for us.'

Where would you fly to in the Dordogne? There aren't any international airports in the area. I suspect either Bordeaux or Toulouse, but it's going to take you about half a day to get out of the airport, get the car, and drive to Sarlat, for example. I don't really think you have time for the Dordogne.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 07:25 AM
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Carlux and Michele, thanks for advice. Appears Provence is a better fit for the time I have. My plan would be to fly into Marseille for my Provence itinerary, rent a car for travel in the region. Any commentary on the Marseille airport welcomed, shows to about 50 miles from St. Remy area
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Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 07:37 AM
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Marseilles airport is small and easy to deal with and very easy to connect with Bouches-du-Rhône area from there.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 12:02 PM
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Have been investigating the same. We are a bit luckier with time, and will spend 4-5 days in Sarlat and a week in St Remy.

Since you are flying into Marseilles...If you are a "fan" of the Count of Monte Cristo, you can take a very brief boat ride from Marseilles harbor, out to where he stayed In the novel, at Chateau d'If. It might be an interesting way to start you time there, before heading out of town to wherever you chose to stay in Provence. As we are flying from Marseilles to Venice, s qw have been checking on interesting ways to spend too-brief time in Marseilles.

When are you going??? We'll be in St Remy the week of June 4 though 11, so if you'd like a little mini gtg...
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Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 12:03 PM
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Oh--apologies for missing this--i see you're there in April.
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Old Oct 19th, 2010, 03:50 PM
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We chose St Remy and the Luberon as a base last year.
In st Remy we stayed at Mas Carassins (a charming hotel close to the village) and Clos du Buis in the heart of Bonnieux.
It was perfect and peacefull.
We hired a local chauffeur-guide who went out of her way to showcase the region as we needed.. We were stunned everywhere we went to . You should contact this nice lady if you don't have too much time. I am sure you will get the most of your trip if you let her tailor something for you.
www.experience-provence.eu
Cheers,
Chad
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Old Oct 28th, 2010, 09:25 AM
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I agree with all of the comments that with limited time Provence is the way to go (easier access).... but after spending a week in the Dordogne last month I hope that you will be able to return there some day! We stayed near St. Remy during our visit to Provence and found it to be a charming, lovely and manageable town and a good base for exploring the region.
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Old Oct 31st, 2010, 05:42 AM
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I had always prefer sun to anyother thing. Dordogne as scenary will be very much as UK, hilly, green and humid, with cows.
I will assure that you will find a nicer change in Provence and a warmer weather. To syya there check 2 web
http://www.jardindebachus.com
http://www.provence-escapade.fr/divers.htm
you will be delighted if you like food to stay with Christine and Erik (fluent in English)
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Old Oct 31st, 2010, 07:11 AM
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I disagree that time is too short for the Dordogne. We've had friends come for three or four days and I do not think that they felt short-changed. But on the on the other hand, there is no reason to choose the Dordogne over the Provence unless you have an overwhelming desire to visit pre-historic sites.
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Old Nov 17th, 2010, 11:26 AM
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I think I'd do Provence with only 3 days. We stayed in the Luberon town of Roussillon last year for a week and visited all the cute perched villages.
We then spent 4 nights in St Remy and visited the towns near there. We loved it all.
St. Remy has a lot of restaurants and shops and makes a good base for visiting the area.
We also stayed at La Mas de Carassins and highly recommend it.
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