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France - Loves/hates about my 2016 trip

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Sep 15th, 2016, 06:44 AM
  #1
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France - Loves/hates about my 2016 trip

I visited France in mid-June for two weeks. Here is what I...

Loved...

Font de Gaume, Rouffignac, Lascaux II. My expectations were high for these sites and they still exceeded. When these paintings were fresh, the Gaza Pyramids were still 12,000 years in the future. These prehistoric painters could have taught medieval artists quite a lot. Staff at FdR said 2017 or 2018 will likely be the last years the cave is available to the public.

"The Cave Painters" by Gregory Curtis is a good background history of the discovery, research, and theories of the cave paintings throughout southern Europe.

Museum of Prehistory in Les Eyzies.

Driving around the Vézère and Dordogne river valleys with no particular agenda.

All the rain, flooding, and labor unrest because tourism was way down in the Dordogne region I was told, leaving more for me!

La Tour de Cause B&B near Domme. The new owners, Igor and Nico, have created a fantastic value and base for exploring the area. Beautiful, quiet, and comfortable rooms are only the beginning. They are highly trained former chefs from Brussels who prepare wonderful meals (and breakfast) in an intimate setting with good conversation. 75 euro per night (85 for 2 people), dinner 35 euro.

Ó Plaisir Des Sens – It is along the D703 just north of Domme. I had their superb 55 euro menu.

Cabanoix et Chatâigne – In Domme, call ahead a day or two for reservations. I don’t know the French name for the dish, but I had a delicious hearty chicken stew they featured that night.

Le Déjeuner sur l’Herbe – It’s a small grocery and deli in Saint-Lèon which serves a terrific lunch. It fronts a nice little park along the banks of the Vézère river.

Hôtel de Jue de Paume (Paris). In Ile St. Louis, so it's pricey at 195 euro, but the location is fantastic. The staff was very helpful when rail strikes upended my plans. Bonus! The staff has a playful dog in case you are missing your quadrupedal friend from home.

Nos Ancetres Les Gaulois (Our Ancestors the Gauls) - Average food for Paris, but in a really fun atmosphere.

Cluny Museum tour led by Context Tours.

Driving and hiking around Saint-Remy with no particular agenda.

Hated...

Nearly endless rain, flooding, rail strikes.

Airline strikes. Blew a hole in my Provence itinerary.

Le Castelet des Alpilles (Saint-Remy). This place has some nice features but mostly fails where it counts. It has a good location, a refreshing pool, a secure parking lot, and pleasant staff. My room was noisy and drab. Any sound echoes throughout the halls, easily penetrating my room’s thin walls. My small lumpy bed was as disappointing as the breakfast: stale bread (probably imported from Florida), mushy fruit, store-bought juice, and suspicious cold-cut meats. At 125 euro per night, this place is a poor value.
Edward2005 is offline  
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Sep 15th, 2016, 07:17 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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Bookmarkig your b @ b near Domme for future trip. Too bad about your weather, we were in Portugal and France this last April into May and had lots of rain or very gloomy skies until the last week in Provence where it was beautiful.
Colleen is offline  
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Sep 15th, 2016, 07:24 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2016
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Good thread, good spirit.

Sounds like you had a great time.
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Sep 15th, 2016, 08:18 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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A lot more loves than hates, which has to be a good thing.

Not a lot you can do about the weather, but you seem to have enjoyed yourself regardless.

We have just returned from four weeks in Northern France, with almost non-stop sun, only one and a half days of rain, but we could just as easily have had a lot more rain.

If I were looking for a B&B I'd make a note of the one in Domme too.
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Sep 15th, 2016, 08:48 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2006
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La Tour isn't *in* Domme, by the way. They have a nice Facebook site with lots of pics if you're interested. They've done a great job continuing the excellent reputation of La Tour de Cause.
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Sep 15th, 2016, 08:52 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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you are right, I should have said near Domme.
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