France: Something Different from Paris

Jan 5th, 2012, 03:51 AM
  #21  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
If you want the south of France and aren't going to rent a car then your best options are Avignon or Nice. Both are the transport hubs of their regions and will offer you the best opportunity for public transport and private tours.
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Jan 5th, 2012, 04:23 AM
  #22  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
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Miltronix,

“I would prefer to avoid renting a car if possible.”

Lucky you to have 10 full days in Paris or beyond! I would suggest your reading PARIS TO THE PAST: Traveling Through French History by Train by Ina Caro.

The book makes suggestions for historic/cultural destinations from Paris by public transportation – most under 1 ½ hours. Also contains excellent recommendations for luncheon spots on many excursions. She emphasizes that traveling by train to these scenic destinations puts you in the middle of the action (in most cases) without the hassle of parking.


Just noticed Kerouac's suggestion for LaRochelle. Caro strongly suggests visiting this city - the only "must see" destination in PARIS TO THE PAST that can not be seen on a day trip. It sound facinating.

Let us know how it goes...
latedaytraveler is offline  
Jan 5th, 2012, 07:20 AM
  #23  
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Join Date: Jan 2012
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Avignon, Nice, and La Rochelle are the finalists. What is it about La Rochelle that has so many people recommending it?

We're definitely foodies (I actually started researching restaurants before thinking about the overall itinerary) and we're both also photographers (we own a photography business). One of my favorite memories from Barcelona was walking through the Barri Gotic on our way to lunch and photographing people doing their everyday thing. I enjoyed that much more than the Sagrada Familia. In fact, I liked the meal we had at a mom and pop restaurant after visiting the Sagrada Familia more than seeing the sight because we just let the owners have free reign on what was served. Seeing various older gentlemen come in and take their favorite seats (owner purposely sat other customers away from those tables) and receiving their food without ordering was one of the fun memories we had...
miltronix is offline  
Jan 5th, 2012, 07:35 AM
  #24  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
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Well, if you're that foodie-ish, then maybe Lyon. It's considered the food capital of France. If you're up for winter scenery/weather, you could take an excursion to Grenoble. Or even Geneva if you can stand that big a city.
Mimar is offline  
Jan 5th, 2012, 07:36 AM
  #25  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
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Nice is gorgeous. Nice scenery, great food and wonderful little boutique shops. Happy travels.
ileen is offline  
Jan 5th, 2012, 07:44 AM
  #26  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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It's absolutely gorgeous, has spectacular seafood restaurants, and hardly any English-speaking expats (probably not relevant for you, but highly relevant for me). And the lovely Ile de Ré is just over the bridge.
StCirq is online now  
Jan 6th, 2012, 12:46 AM
  #27  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,379
For foodies, Lyon would be a great choice, but could be cold in Feb. La Rochelle will be more temperate almost guaranteed. The top restuarant there is probably Coutanceau

http://www.coutanceaularochelle.com/

If the price scares you they also have 3 more reasonably priced ones run by the same familyto choose from in La Rochelle:

http://www.gregorycoutanceau.com/contenu/,accueil,1?#

And again, if you consider Toulouse, it is the region for cassoulet
jpie is online now  

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