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France itinerary help please Mont Michel, Honfleur, Loire, Dordogne.

France itinerary help please Mont Michel, Honfleur, Loire, Dordogne.

Jan 3rd, 2017, 03:38 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 118
France itinerary help please Mont Michel, Honfleur, Loire, Dordogne.

Hi everyone. Looking for suggestions re our French itinerary. I believe car hire is appropriate for most of our stops but wanted to hire outside of Paris. Can spend about 3 weeks and wanted to take in Mont St Michel and surrounds, best place to hire car? Also quickest transfer from Paris? Should we then relinquish car then and take train to Amboise and hire car for Loire for a few days? Then relinquish car and rehire at Salat?
Supermum is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2017, 03:59 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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I think you could do the entire trip by car - except the return to Paris? for your flight home.

A plan could be:

- Land at CDG, pick up a car, and drive 2 1/4 hrs to Honfleur for 2-3 nights. Visit a few sites - the Pays d'Auge, a few castles, etc (no mention of WWII stuff by you).

- Drive to Dinan and stay 4 nights & visit MSM very early in the morning, sites around Dinan, etc.

- Drive 3 3/4 hrs to Amboise & spend several days there (get to Chambord, Chennonceau, and Villandry 10 mins before they open in the morning).

- Drive 5 hrs to Sarlat (visiting a few spots along the way). Stay in Sarlat for several nights.

- Drive to Collonges la Rouge, visit, then on to Brive la Gaillarde. Return the car & train back to Paris.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is online now  
Jan 3rd, 2017, 04:09 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,358
Take a train to Caen and pick up a care there and keep it, train schedules being what they are. If returning to Paris I presume you would dump in in Brive-la-Gaillarde.
RonZ is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2017, 04:15 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Driving out of CDG, if desiring a shorter drive, head to Les Andeleys and stay overnight at the Chaine d'Or.
RonZ is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2017, 04:23 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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>>head to Les Andeleys and stay overnight at the Chaine d'Or.<<

That's a good option too.

Train to Caen is a tad difficult & time-consuming.

I just posed this on another thread today.

>>>If my friends take the train from CDG to Caen, do you think it's too much for them to visit the WWII museum that day too? I know that I'm pretty jetlagged the first day. <<<<

>>Doubt it

The Museum closes at 6PM. At a minimum, it is a 3 hr visit if you want to get any value out of it. That means you must arrive before 3PM. There is a train from Paris that leaves at 12:10 & arrives at 2PM. You MAY be able to check into your hotel and get to the Museum in 1 hr - but that's rushing it.

To catch the 12:10 train, you'll need to walk out of the airport and catch a cab by 10:30, IMO (any others care to advise?). I would not want to take the RER from CDG into Paris, catch a cab to Gare St Lazare, and then train to Caen all on arrival day. Too much could go wrong.

To walk out of the terminal by 10:30 after going through passport control and securing your bags - you'll need to land (on time) by 9am. Adding a "fudge factor" of 1 hr - I would want to land by 8AM.<<

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is online now  
Jan 3rd, 2017, 05:16 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 21,377
I strongly recommend the Michelin Green Guide for these areas.

I'm linking in an itinerary that I do NOT recommend (really! but read on...), because you might find it informative nonetheless. My final plan (scroll down to my post from 1 March 2011) worked exceedingly well for me, given MY interests, but was VERY fast-paced and I don't think it would work well for anyone traveling with anyone else. Even so, the plan spans the regions you are considering, and this thread includes a LOT of extraordinarily helpful comments from knowledgeable Fodorites....

Hope it helps!
kja is offline  
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