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48 Hours around Avignon, I have come up with a Driving Plan

48 Hours around Avignon, I have come up with a Driving Plan

Mar 23rd, 2016, 07:50 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 4
48 Hours around Avignon, I have come up with a Driving Plan

Date of Travel:
Arrive in Avignon by TGV - May 9th 12 Noon
Depart Avignon by TGV - May 11th 12 Noon

This is part of my 15 day trip in France. I will be picking up a rental car at Avignon once I get off the train.

This is my first time in France and I am doing a solo trip. My basic interests are Landscapes, nature and country sides. I have done my research and put together two road maps.

Day 1 Driving Plan - I have to split this up for on the day of arrival and for on the day I leave.

Les Baux-de-Provence
St Rémy-de-Provence

Day 2 Driving Plan - Plan to start very early on the 10th, maybe at around 6 AM

Gorges du Verdon
Les Salles-sur-Verdon
Abbaye du Thoronet

I would seek some insights into my plan please, I was wondering if this is realistic or should I just stick with one plan as I have half day, full day and half day which consists of 48 hours. Please advise. I have also not booked places to stay for these two nights as I am not sure where it would be best to stay with this plan.

Your suggestions are invaluable. Thank you.
DanielJ is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2016, 09:41 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,995
Perhaps I am misunderstanding you, but you plan to see all those places each day, or you're asking advice as to which ones folks would recommend? Even seeing half of those places each day would be driving frantically from one place to another just to check them off the list. But everyone has a different traveling style and if this suits you, enjoy!
grandmere is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2016, 10:31 PM
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Thank you. This is exactly what I intend to know here. Those are not all places I intend to get off and explore. I got these places a drive through. What I intend to find is if this is a realistic approach. Or maybe I can club both the maps for the whole two days so I get more time at each place. On Google Maps, each drive seems short, maybe 20 minutes-45 minutes, hence I was confused as to what I exactly need to do with my time and car at Avignon.
DanielJ is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2016, 11:48 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 897

Not sure if you plan on sleeping at all during your 48 hours, but if so, then I'd highly recommend dropping "Day 2" and devoting your time and energy to "Day 1". I'm sure at least once in a while you'll be wanting to hop out of the car and have a look around !

- Kevin
kevin_widrow is offline  
Mar 24th, 2016, 02:58 AM
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Posts: 4
Kevin, That is very helpful, thank you. I will just do the first plan and drop the second one, wish I had an extra day here. This seems to be the best part of France.
DanielJ is offline  
Mar 24th, 2016, 07:06 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I guess you will be able to say you "saw" Provence but I doubt you will say you "enjoyed" it. Just a thought.
If you now think this is the most interesting part (and you have given it 2 days), why not change some other part and give it an extra day--BUT don't do anything more than day one!!
Gretchen is online now  
Mar 24th, 2016, 07:43 AM
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I think even Day 1 is too much to cover in two days. Even if a couple things are really same place (like Glanum). Not sure why you picked Fontvielle but I imagine you'll just drive through it, along with some others on that list. I'd drop Lourmarin, it's pretty far out of the way and I don't know why you picked it as being so different from all the other villages where you'll be that you'd go out of your way to go there. If you want to pay hommage to Camus' grave, okay, but there'd have to be a special reason to go there.

I don't think the FOntaine de Vaucluse is worth a special trip, if you are pressed for time, either.
Christina is offline  
Mar 24th, 2016, 06:26 PM
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@gretchen @Christina I appreciate your advice. I understand if I plan it this way I will end up biting more than I can chew, Christina, you advise is very constructive, I will work on this and yes, many of the places are drive throughs, I put them on the list so I know the route I will be taking.
DanielJ is offline  
Mar 25th, 2016, 02:40 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,168
Some things you will find when you are on the ground:

1 your ability to do even your shorter trip depends on the day of the week (market days will slow you down) and time of day. Many of these are on narrow roads that are busy at commercial and school hours. twenty miles can take an hour.

2. You can't drive or park in some of these towns. You will have to leave the car in the outskirts and walk to the sites. I am thinking of Avignon, Arles, and Les Baux.

3. Unless you plan to live on bread and sandwiches from a bakery, you are going to have a hard time getting and eating a meal in less than an hour.

4. Many of these towns have what amount to siesta times when everything including gas stations are closed from 2-5. You can only use the automated gas pumps with a chip and pin -- not chip and signature -- credit card.
Ackislander is offline  
Mar 25th, 2016, 02:46 PM
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You just cannot do this. Get a guidebook and a map and consult www.viamichelin.com and try to form a realistic plan. Yours is not one.
StCirq is online now  
Mar 25th, 2016, 03:20 PM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 4,120
Day 1 is all over the place.

For example, we stayed in Menerbes and did Roussillon and Bonnieux in one day. That included the walk through the park in Roussillon and a meal in Bonnieux.

We drove to St Remy and back another day - that was market day on a Wednesday. We couldn't park right in town so had a bit of a walk.

Les Baux takes a while just to reach through the Alpilles and then you park and walk up the hill to see it.

From Day 2, we drove the Gorges du Verdon and stopped in Moustiers-Sainte-Marie with a quick stop in Grasse on one long day. I'm sure even that would not have been recommended here.

Don't go to a place just to say you've been there. Allow enough time to enjoy it, even if it's only 1 or 2 places.
kwren is online now  
Mar 25th, 2016, 03:40 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 52,325
Daniel - I suspect that many experienced travellers here would agree with me that the hardest part of trip planning is working out what to leave out. However it gets easier once you have taken on board that you can't see it all. once you really accept that, you can then start to work out what you really want to see and do.

IMO your itinerary is long on seeing, short on doing. You're going all that way to sit in the car???? askislander makes some good points - [as do the others here] but the main point that emerges is this: you need to get out and walk! walk, taste, smell, hear, feel - sit in a pavement cafe, walk round a market, climb a hill or a castle, canoe down a river - all of these will be more memorable than just sitting in your car driving from one traffic jam to another.
annhig is offline  
Mar 25th, 2016, 09:47 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,669
Here is something I posted many years ago about a tour of the Luberon.

8:00 or 8:30 - Get to Gordes, pull the car over at the view "spot" & take a picture. Park the car in the lot, and visit Gordes. Have a cafe creme & croissants for breakfast at one of the outdoor cafes. Walk down to the Lavoire & back. Explore Gordes.

10:00 leave Gordes.
10:30 arrive in Oppede le Vieux & explore a bit
11:30 leave Oppede, drive to Menerbes
11:45 arrive in Menerbes & explore. Grab a sandwich for lunch & sit on a bench with a view & have lunch.
12:45 leave Menerbes
1:00 arrive in Lacoste, drive up towards the village & view Bonnieux across the valley. No visit of Lacoste. Drive to Bonnieux.
1:45 Visit Bonnieux (sandwich, if you didn't have one in Menerbes)
3:15 leave Bonnieux & head to Roussillon.
3:45 arrive in Roussillon, park the car, and explore Roussillon. Visit the Ocre fields. Have an afternoon coffee at a cafe.
5:45 Leave Roussillon. If you still have some energy left, visit Goult - otherwise, call it a day.

BTW - Kevin lives in the Luberon - so pay attention to his recommendations.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is online now  

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