Arles or St. Remy for Provence visit

Apr 25th, 2013, 05:36 AM
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Arles or St. Remy for Provence visit

I am trying to decide between staying in Arles (Hotel Le Calendal) or St. Remy (Hotel Sous les Figuiers) for four nights early in July. We do want to visit Arles for a day but also want to visit other places. The hotel rooms available are similar in price.
Merci, in advance, for your advice!
KTtravel is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 06:15 AM
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We really liked Hotel Sous les Figuieres in St Remy. We stayed there for four nights two years ago in early June and it was too cold to use the pool but it should be great for July. There is secured parking on site and it is an easy walk to the town. The nicest rooms are in the back tucked behind the fig trees. I know nothing about Hotel Le Calendal but am not a fan of Arles-fine for a day trip but finding parking was a challenge.
nini is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 06:19 AM
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St Remy is in a little better location for visiting the main sites in Provence. Both cities have adequate restaurants for 4 nights.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 06:33 AM
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I'll look at it somewhat differently.

Using a town/city as a base implies you'll be spending more time is that place. I think Arles has more to keep you busy when you're there.

Arles was one of the surprises of our recent trip to mostly Provence and Paris.

The other major surprise was Montpellier
Myer is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 07:13 AM
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I'd concur with Myer about Arles--there is a lot to do there. We loved it, although we did not stay at the hotel you reference.

It did not appear to us that any drive in that area was too long, as the roads are good and relatively traffic-free, and the countryside is beautiful.
dwdvagamundo is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 08:59 AM
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KTtravel will be in Provence during lavender season. I would want to be as close as possible to Sault (center of the lavender fields). St Remy is about 20 mins closer to Sault than Arles. It is about a 2 hr 10 min drive from Arles on not-too-scenic roads for about 3/4 of the way to Sault. It also takes 30 mins less to get to Gordes in the Luberon from St Remy than from Arles. Arles to Gordes is 1 hr 20 mins.

IMO, most of the region that's inside a triangle with the Rhone to the west, the A7 to the east, and the D99 to the south is not nearly as scenic (except for the small area around Chateauneuf du Pape at the north end) as other regions in Provence. The area around Avignon with all the urban sprawl is particularly ugly.

Stu Dudley
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Apr 25th, 2013, 09:22 AM
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I guess you have to decide what's better for you.

More to do while you're at your base or a somewhat longer drive to the outside sights.
Myer is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 09:35 AM
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I like the Calendal very much. You'll be up the street by Van Goth's Night Café. in La Place du Forum. Be sure, if you have time to visit the museum started by Mistral, Musee Arlaten, whose theme is the Arlaten life style through the centuries.
cigalechanta is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 09:58 AM
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We stayed at Le Calendal in Arles and liked it a lot, but we only stayed one night after a visit to the area called La Camargue and the towns Aigues-Mortes and Stes-Maries-de-la-Mer. We have also stayed in St Remy and found it to be a good central location and I would recommend staying there. We didn't like our hotel and the name escapes me (but it isn't the one you mention). A highlight of our visit to St Remy was seeing the Glanum ruins, they're a nice walk from town.
hoodpt is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 09:20 PM
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Thank you all for your input. It sounds like we have two good options. Hmm, much to mull over.
KTtravel is offline  
Apr 26th, 2013, 07:56 PM
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Bookmarking for our upcoming trip--thanks
cybertraveler is offline  
Apr 26th, 2013, 09:00 PM
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Tough choice--stayed in St. Remy at a nice little hotel/B&B which is now called "Hotel sous les Figuiers" (Hotel under the Figtrees). Perfect little place. St. Remy is a great base for seeing the area. Went to Arles for an afternoon and we loved it there too! It's a bit bigger. Bonne chance (good luck)!
samoca is offline  
Apr 26th, 2013, 09:07 PM
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Didn't read your post that carefully--Hotel sous les Figuiers had a slightly different name in 2006 when I was there (Fig and the Onion maybe?). Just googled it and found out that this was the name of the place we loved. It was just a wonderful place to stay--St. Remy was our favorite place in the two weeks we were in Provence. It's like a French town you see in the movies--perfect little center square with great little shops on all the adjacent streets. Nice restaurants. Still have some great pillow shams I use on my couch that I bought in the weekly market in St. Remy. You have to see the Van Gogh clinic just outside town. In spring there are iris plants that look just like the paintings he did there! Les Baux is amazing and about 15 minutes' drive. Also check out a place that used to be called La Cathedrale des Images. The ladies who run Sous les Figuiers will know. Another good drive from there (besides Arles) was the town of Eze, not far from the Pont du Gard (the famous Roman acqueduct). You're gonna have fun!
samoca is offline  
Apr 26th, 2013, 11:21 PM
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Hotel sous les figuiers has had the same name for years and it was called such in 2006. Musuem Arlatan in Arles is closed for refurb and will only reopen in 2014....
As for your location, it will be a question of wether you'll prefer to stay in a bigger of a smaller town. Both Hotels are great.
Calendal is in the very centre of Arles, just by the arena. It will busier and beware of car park.
Sous les figuiers is tucked away, quieter, in a smaller village, maybe easier to get around.
This will a hard choice... I must admit, unless you split your stay! Arles and St Remy are a 15/20 mn drive away.
Dor ideas on what to do see in the region

Hope this will help
FACE OR TALE!!! (pile ou face)
PhilippeProvence is offline  
Apr 27th, 2013, 03:37 AM
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Samoca refers to "the town of Eze, not far from Pond du Gard"

Uzes is the town near Pont du Gard. Eze is a town on the coast near Nice.

Both worth visiting but in this case it's Uzes you are talking about.
isabel is offline  
May 6th, 2013, 08:29 PM
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my wife and i were there last may and arles was so forgettable. st.remy had the compactness of a small city, easy to walk around, and very vibrant. arles was the complete opposite.
calgary1989 is offline  
May 6th, 2013, 11:45 PM
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Thank you for your suggestions. We have ended up deciding on Arles for one night and St. Remy for the next three as the hotel in St. Remy can't accommodate us for the first night. Although I usually prefer not to have to change hotels, I think this will be a good compromise. I am getting very excited about the trip!
KTtravel is offline  
May 7th, 2013, 03:59 AM
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kelsey22 is offline  
May 8th, 2013, 10:18 AM
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Thank you, Isabel, of course, the town is Uzes. I remember going there after seeing the Pont du Gard and having tea in a lovely English style tea shop in the afternoon. It's all gray stone--It looked very different from the little towns closer to St. Remy, especially of course Roussillon, where every building is the gorgeous ocher color of the hills.

Philippe: Of course, Sous les Figuiers was the same name in 2006. I think what confuses me was that one of the owners had a still life painting on the wall near the office of a fig and a clove of garlic. Have not been back to Provence since then, and my memory is foggy. Merci! In any case, it was a delightful place to stay.
samoca is offline  
Sep 14th, 2013, 11:59 AM
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I thought I should report back that we loved our "compromise" of staying one night in Arles and three in St. Remy. While the hotel in Arles was nothing special, it was very well located and the manager helped us locate a nearby parking garage (she even walked us to it!)

We ended up staying at the Mas des Carassins in St. Remy which was a lovely place to stay. Their meals were tasty and so enjoyable in their lovely garden that we ate there every night.

Thank you all for your suggestions!
KTtravel is offline  

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