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Home Base in Provence in April?

Old Jan 7th, 2019, 07:44 PM
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Home Base in Provence in April?

Hi.
I am going to Provence in mid-April with my family and brother-in-laws family (4 kids aged 4, 7, 12, 15). We are looking to rent a house for a week (ideally surrounded by nature but on the edge of a small to mid-sized town) that is centrally located in Provence and from which we could take day trips to see the surrounding areas. Any recommendations for towns that would make a good home base? I've read that it can be nice to be near one of the main towns in the Luberon. It would be awfully nice if we could be close enough to a town that we could walk or drive briefly into town for meals at a few good restaurants.

And any recommendations for towns/sights that would good to see that time of year? What are folks absolute favorite spots? We love food, art, nature, and beautiful villages.

Thanks,
Patrick
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Old Jan 8th, 2019, 01:41 PM
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Provence is a large area - but to me the heart of tourist Provence is yes around the Avignon/Arles area. And for a nice house in a small town check the Gites de France site - these are vacation homes often in small villages or on farms that are typically in the busy season rented for a week or more. Anyway will find tons of nice places but book early for summer season.
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Old Jan 8th, 2019, 03:49 PM
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We've rented 72 gites through Gites de France - and none of them have been on farms and only 2 of them have been in villages.


If you want to stay in a village with lots of shops, cafes, restaurants, other tourists, English spoken - stay in St Remy. If you want to be surrounded by vineyards & rolling countryside & close to hill villages - stay in the Luberon. Only 1 of the 6 different gites we've rented in Provence - only 1 was within walking distance of a village. None were in villages.



Stu Dudley
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Old Jan 8th, 2019, 04:48 PM
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This is not one of the places we've stayed in - but it is in the same village where we rented a gite for 2 weeks a few years ago. And it's our favorite location in the Luberon. Not too touristy with several good restaurants, a small weekly market, small grocery, nice bar/cafe which is VERY popular for a Sunday lunch, perched/scenic village.


BTW - we rent our gites in Provence at least 1 year in advance.


Stu Dudley
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Old Jan 9th, 2019, 01:45 AM
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We stayed in Gordes last year. The property has availability in early April. https://www.theluberon.com/rentals/l...ison-de-gordes

We would highly recommend it.
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Old Jan 9th, 2019, 08:27 AM
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That property Judy shows looks fantastic! Now that is a very good website, also, as it shows properties right on a map. I

A lot of places are not going to be within walking distance to restaurants, of course, a lot of Provence rentals are much farther out and in the countryside. That place above claims to be a 10 minutes walk from town, so that's good (although that might be too much for little kids, as often what that really means is about a mile). And you can't drive into Gordes, it is restricted to cars except for residents. They have aparking lot at the bottom of the hill, though, it's just a bit of a hike up then.

I stayed on the edge of Roussillon once and that is a good place to look, also. It's large enough to have a few restaurants (nothing fancy) and shops, but it actually is open to cars, there are a couple car parks, one in center and some on the edges, also.

I hope you aren't going Easter Week, or you can maybe forget about this, your choices will be very limited at this late date. And a lot of rentals have limited dates, you can't pick and choose. A lot of them require Sat to Saturday, for example.
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Old Jan 9th, 2019, 09:34 AM
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I should have mentioned that the 10 minute walk described on the website for the villa I posted is along a road leading up to town without sidewalks. We opted not to walk into Gordes but it was a 3 minute car ride with a couple of choices for parking and several good restaurants.
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Old Jan 25th, 2019, 06:49 AM
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Hello Patrick,
We wrote a trip report here recently titled 'Provencal Echo'. You might find answers to some of your questions there.
cheers
I am done. The end.
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