A night in French countryside?

Jul 26th, 1999, 09:58 AM
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A night in French countryside?

My wife and I will be spending 8 days on Paris at the end of September. We are thinking about staying 1 night outside of Paris to see the French countryside. Chateaux country, Champagne region or Burgundy region? Rent a car or not? Need recommendations/opinions.
Jul 26th, 1999, 10:13 AM
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Try Orleans. If you rent a car it is only 2hrs from Paris to the SW. I will be staying in the Chateaux De Pray (tel +330247572367), in Amboise in a few weeks. you can have a room in the castle itself or a less expensive room in the gatehouse which views the castle. I like to stay in the castle. 800Ffr/double approximately. From the Chateaux you can drive to several lovely castles with delicious wine cellars. Email me direct if you'd like more info.
Jul 26th, 1999, 12:41 PM
Dena Harrington
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Hi Ray! Lucky you going to Paris. My husband & I were there in March and then went to the Loire Valley (Chateaux country) for 2 nights. I HIGHLY recommend it. I've not been to the other areas you asked about, so I can't compare. But the castles are wonderful. We took the TGV (bullet train) from Paris to Tours. There we rented a car and drove the countryside. We stayed at the most beautiful place called Domaine des Haut de Loire, located in Onzain, which is in between Tours and Blois. The place was something out of a fairy tale, swans on the lawn, impeccable service and absolutely beautiful. It was previously the hunting lodge of a Count. I would be happy to give you more details if you would like, just e-mail me directly. One problem tho, we planned to only stay 1 night and when we got there it was so incredible, that we stayed for 2 nights, we didn't want to leave! Not that I didn't LOVE Paris, I did. Have a great time whatever you do!

Jul 27th, 1999, 02:13 AM
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Whatever region you choose, you should go for the train + rental car option, that'll save you a lot of stress, unless you think that driving in Paris for one day might be fun. The problem is that, if you want to get a feel of the countryside, one night is quite short. If you go to Châteaux de la Loire, it's more for the châteaux themselves than for the coutnryside. Ditto for Champagne. So, my best bet would be Burgundy : hop on the TGV either to Dijon (1h40) or, better but with less connections, to Montbard (1h), and from then on rent a car and explore the countryside. If you want to avoid renting a car, you can go to Vézelay, 1h30 mn from Paris by train, a charming little town in Burgundy close to Chablis country, and with one of the best abbeys and restaurants/hotels (Marc Menot) in France.
Jul 27th, 1999, 03:47 AM
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I was in your situation several months ago. Regarding the car, I would recommend renting one. We drove from Paris to the Loire, and the only difficult part was actually getting out of Paris. What an adventure! As Craig mentioned, the area near Amboise is wonderful. However, I would recommend that you stay at the Chateau de la Bourdaisiere, just outside of Amboise in Montlouis-sur-Loire. It is easy to find. The castle is actually owned by two real princes, and both men live there. You can either stay in the main castle or in a room in the gatehouse. We stayed in the gatehouse, and were very pleased. The bathroom had a porcelain bathtub and sinks, yet the room was charming and rustic, with wooden beams and simple decoration. It was only 650ff per night. The nearby restaurant called La Cave (also a wine cellar) was beautiful. It will be hands-down one of the most romantic meals you and your wife will share. Good luck.
Jul 29th, 1999, 05:30 AM
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Thanks all for the info.

Becky, Where did you rent the car. How much does an automatic for one day cost?
Aug 2nd, 1999, 06:27 PM
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Onzain is one of my favorite places, convenient to most of the Loire Valley (it had to be, I was cycling). A less expensive hotel choice (but also very nice) is the Chateau des tertes

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