Notices

day in French countryside

Old Oct 13th, 2008, 06:30 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 10
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
day in French countryside

My husband and I will be en route to Paris from Florence around December 29 as we'll spend New Years in Paris. We'd love to spend a day and night in a quaint place before hitting the big city. We are not sure how we will travel and the best way as we are not renting a car. (Should we fly from Florence to Paris and then take a train down to someplace? Or should we take an over night train into France, spend a day, and then train up to Paris?)
We are looking for recommendations for a quaint town to visit en route. We are wine lovers, but realize small, independent vineyards may be closed during this time. My husband has never been to France and while a 1-day trip in the country is certainly not enough, we wanted just a taste! Any suggestions as to where we should go during December would be appreciated! (And also how you would travel.)
mlentine is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 07:22 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,229
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Maybe for a start, think about Lyon or Dijon. Lots to see and do even that close to the end of the year.

Nice, Marseille, or a few others that area might be worthwhile spending a day too.

Since you're going to be travelling with a train, this would be great for Lyon or Dijon.

Take a look at Coco's apartment site. There's a whole bunch about photos of Dijon. Maybe this would give you a better idea if this city would please you.

I have passed Lyon many, many times but I never entered Lyon. I have had a lot of advice about Lyon and it's center. It's a good place to visit.

I'm sure you're going to get lots of good places too.

Blackduff
blackduff is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 07:51 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 700
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Don't know the flight's schedule, but Lyon is a possible choice :
Florence/Lyon by airplane,
day around Lyon(some nice restaurants,
and not so far/great wine's region : burgundy, beaujolais or Cotes du Rhone-winery should be open in this period : always ideas of presents...).
Then Lyon/Paris by TGV.

More difficult perhaps , Dijon to drive to Beaune and around.
Way back to Paris easy by train, but how to reach from Florence??
Erik.
monpetit is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 08:10 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 21,280
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Because of the weather, I would say that the Côte d'Azur is the best bet. Fly or train to Nice and stay in Vence or St. Paul de Vence.
Michael is online now  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 08:18 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 6,629
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If by quaint you mean small, Lyon and Dijon don't fit the bill. BUT, both their old towns have a village feel and if you're arriving by train you'll be in or near the quaint parts of both cities and can also do an easy walk or transfer to nearby overnight hotels. Nice also would be a good stopping off point and similarly, train station is centrally located.

If you fly from Florence/Pisa to Paris, you might want to stay overnight in Senlis, a village quite near CDG, and from there an easy train into Paris. I think Senlis by taxi from CDG would not be too expensive. Could be buses or trains as well. This is only a guess, I had a car when I was there.

You might check to see if any of the champagne houses in and around Reims are open during that time.

Let us know what you decide.

Cathinjoetown is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 09:12 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 10
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks all for the responses. I had thought about Dijon as it seems to be on the way by train. After reading through others' posts, I thought Beaune may be nice and I found some nice B and Bs there. Is it difficult to get from Dijon to Beaune? How far is it and is it accessible by train? Thanks!!
mlentine is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 09:42 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,642
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi and welcome to Burgundy

It is VERY easy to get from Dijon to Beaune which is only 45km South. You may take one of the numerous trains from Dijon station (20/25min trip for 6.70&euro
happy travel!
coco
cocofromdijon is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 09:45 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 700
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Dijon-Beaune is a 45 km distance.
There are railways every 45 mn and enght of travel is 20 to 30 mn, depending sort of train.
Erik
monpetit is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 09:54 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 6,047
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Beaune is the smaller town, has more wineries and is certainly quaint. IMO, a good place to stay. An alternative would be staying in one of the small wine villages in the area.
traveller1959 is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 10:14 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,967
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I don't think Beaune is very "quaint" at all, but it is small, while Dijon and Lyon are large cities. So of those suggestions, I think it is the best bet. I don't really think French countryside is going to be that scintillating at the end of December, myself. I don't think Dijon is villagey in feeling, either in the area around the Ducal Palace, which is the historic center and I guess what someone would call the Old Town area.
Christina is online now  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 10:52 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,276
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I think someplace in Alsace would be a great choice. Colmar, if you want a medium sized city - or one of the smaller villages like Riquewihr or Kayserburg if you are looking for something quaint. It will take you about 3 hrs to get to Colmar by train from Paris.

I don't know how much research you have done regarding transportation, but when we're in France, we're always trying to "hook up" with our closest friends who have a second home in Tuscany. Travel between France & Tuscany is very time consuming. Trains are slow, and air is difficult also. I would suggest that you not try to visit someplace on the way from Florence to Paris. I would be surprised of you could get to Lyon or Dijon (to visit Beaune) or Strasbourg (for Colmar) before about 5PM - which is after sunset. By the time you get to Colmar or Beaune, it will be 7PM. That doesn't leave much time to do anything. The next day you probably have most of a day of sunlight before you need to depart for Paris. IMO, that isn't enough "being there" to really enjoy the French countryside & small villages.

If you do this as an overnight from Paris, you could pack a small "carry-on" bag (leave the large bag with the hotel), get to Colmar or Beaune by mid or late morning, enjoy the majority of that day, then return to Paris around 4PM the next day.

Remember, however, that most everything will be closed on Jan 1.

Have you considered the lovely Tuscany countryside, instead of the French countryside???

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is online now  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 03:29 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 10
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks to all for the help. We're looking things over before we make a final decision. I think we may fly into Paris and then take a train for a 1 day/ 1 night someplace. Stu, we are spending the time prior in Tuscany so thanks for the suggestion.
Cheers!
mlentine is offline  
Old Oct 13th, 2008, 06:10 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 21,647
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You could fly to Strasbourg, rent a car, and head out into the vineyards of Alsace. There you would get beautiful, quaint villages and fine wines. Colmar could be a good place to spend the night, and the following day (if you could tear yourselves away) you could take the TGV to Paris from Strasbourg.
Underhill is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
igpjazzie
Europe
9
Oct 29th, 2014 01:14 PM
Hayley72
Europe
3
Jan 20th, 2013 07:10 AM
bogie3737
Europe
8
Nov 20th, 2008 02:11 PM
msuguy78
Europe
10
Jan 6th, 2005 09:55 AM
Mark
Europe
4
Jan 24th, 2003 01:43 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO