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How would you tweak this too-short Burgundy plan?

How would you tweak this too-short Burgundy plan?

Old Jul 6th, 2024, 04:20 PM
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How would you tweak this too-short Burgundy plan?

Too bad it’s only 2.5 weeks and too bad my recovering knee is still a doubtful quantity, but we really need a September-October getaway. So, please advise if there are any criminal omissions or unnecessary inclusions in this rough plan. If you know of any intriguing cultural events in the Côte d’Or, Yonne or Saone-et-Loire in the early fall, I am all ears.

We would fly Into and out of Lyon direct with Air Transat.

Train to spend five or six nights in Montbard: it has gites, bakeries, a well regarded Friday market, bike rental and the canal path right there, with attractions of interest to us in doable distance, possibly using train out and bike back. At present I don’t dare to hope for more than 30 km in a day. Fontenay, Buffon, Alesia, Sémur en Auxois, Ancy-le-Franc, Tanlay? Flavigny? Not sure about the latter, not an anise fan.

Car rental probably from Auxerre, either staying in Auxerre or more rurally for a couple of nights, with ambitions for Guédelon, cave art in Arcy-sur-Cure, Chateau Faulin. Vézelay? This part would have been by bike too, with more time and a better knee, but oh well.

Southwards, with one or more one-night stops, to see some of Bibracte, Autun, Chalon-sur-Saone (photography museum), Tournus and its abbey, Chateau de Cormatin, Roche de Salutré. Turn the car in at Macon-Loché or Chalon-sur-Saone, spend the night in the nicest of those cities and train to Lyon for a few sybaritic days and evenings.

Your views?
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Old Jul 6th, 2024, 07:16 PM
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As you know, Frances, we like Burgundy and are hoping to spend time there next year.
We stayed near Flavigny on our first trip way back in 2006, and a lot of water has flowed under the bridge since then. From there we visited several places you mention, but did not stop in Montbard. One memory of Flavigny is the Sunday lunch we had there. Back then it was only on Sundays I think. It was called La Grange and the people of the village did lunch. I remember things such as quiche, salads, desserts and wine by the glass. We all sat at long tables and it was very busy. Our lunch cost the princely sum of 13euros I wrote in my diary. So I looked it up and it seems to now be a ferme auberge but still uses local producers. As far as the Anis de Flavigny goes, there are lots of flavours, but I quite like the original.

We climbed the Roche de Solutre in 2010, actually on Nov 11 and we could hear the music from the ceremony in the nearby village floating up.
I am sure you will have read some of my reports of our stays. A stage of the Tour actually began in Macon the other day and we enjoyed seeing some of the places we have visited, including the Chateau at Cormatin. And last night it began in Semur en Auxois, so we are going to watch some of the stage.
I have no specific advice to give. A lot of people think that Burgundy is just about wine and Dijon/Beaune and a couple of other places such as Vezelay. But we have always really enjoyed our stays there and have found new places to visit next year hopefully.
I will look forward to hearing about your trip. Look after your knees. It is a long time since I rode a bike. P is laughing at the thought!! I often wish we did, but am too old to start again.
Happy planning.
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Old Jul 7th, 2024, 03:34 AM
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My tip - rent an e-bike. You have to pedal still and support is only to 25km/h, but with duff knees it makes life easier, even on the flat.
Fontenay is an absolute must, and combined with the Grand Forge de Buffon makes an interesting industrial archaeology duo, and you get a discount by visiting both. We combined the two with a visit to the source of the Seine for a longish day out from where we were staying. Check to see if Buffon has anything on so more of the site is open, otherwise it doesn't take much time to see it, as most of the site is kept closed by the owners, though you may meet their lovely dog!
Didn't make it to Alesia, the rain set in and we gave up. Maybe next time.
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Old Jul 7th, 2024, 04:04 AM
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We love Chalon sur Saone and have spent a lot of time there. There are some top notch restaurants on the Rue de Strasbourg. Very small, and you have to book in advance. Probably too late for your timeframe but the Paulée in October is definitely worth planning a trip around. Chalon also has several market days. The market next to the cathedral is quite large. Have you thought about doing a self-drive boat rental instead of car? It's easy and you see this area in a totally different way. Lyon of course is beautiful in its own way, but you'll definitely be contending with a more tourist atmosphere.

Other Burgundy highlights:
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Old Jul 7th, 2024, 06:02 AM
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Thanks all, these are very helpful. Hetismij, you’ve made me check whether the OT rents e-bikes and they do. My concern was lifting the wretchedly heavy thing on to a train during its 1-minute stop in these little places, but maybe with the power assist I could ride both ways. We did love our one day renting VAEs from Castelnaudry last year along the Canal du Midi.

La Grange is going on the list, and I am sure not everything will taste of licorice. As for Maison Lameloise, oh my how tempting. Will check the exchequer. Sadly the Paulée falls after I have to be back for my 6-month post-TKR checkup. But Chalon-sur-Saone is moving up in probability anyway.
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Old Jul 7th, 2024, 06:50 AM
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E-bikes nowadays are not so very heavy, and you only have to get one wheel up and wheel it in of course. And I promise you the train won't take off with your bike halfway in, though it might take off with only one of you in!

Even my tadpole trike with electric assist is only 18Kgs.
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Old Jul 7th, 2024, 01:01 PM
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Are you sure that in towns/smaller cities you will be able to get a car with automatic transmission? I would consider Montbard with its relatively small population perhaps too limited for an extended stay.
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Old Jul 8th, 2024, 05:05 AM
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Montbard won’t be the smallest place where we’ve spent up to a week, and it does have services we need plus proximity to sites of interest. The Intermarché there rents cars; oddly enough an SUV was offered on a dummy booking, but I don’t think they let you drop off in a different town. We’d arrive and leave by train.

Not sure where we will rent a car for a few days to a week - Auxerre? Chalon sur Saone? Dijon even? but it will be a major agency and most probably a one-way. Since Burgundy doesn’t seem to abound in hair-raising hairpin switchbacks, we will be fine with manual transmission.
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Old Jul 8th, 2024, 05:27 AM
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You might look at an EV, there are more EVs in France than ICE with automatics.
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Old Jul 8th, 2024, 10:43 AM
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Thanks again to all and feel free to keep the suggestions coming.

A combination of circumstances, none dire in themselves, make it prudent to put this off to the spring. Hoping that means we can stretch the time to cycle more, drive less.
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Old Jul 8th, 2024, 12:20 PM
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Some lovely abbey and priory buildings north of Auxerre and Chablis plus the Yonne/canal de Burgundy to ride along
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Old Jul 9th, 2024, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by FTOttawa
Too bad it’s only 2.5 weeks and too bad my recovering knee is still a doubtful quantity, but we really need a September-October getaway. So, please advise if there are any criminal omissions or unnecessary inclusions in this rough plan. If you know of any intriguing cultural events in the Côte d’Or, Yonne or Saone-et-Loire in the early fall, I am all ears.

We would fly Into and out of Lyon direct with Air Transat.

Train to spend five or six nights in Montbard: it has gites, bakeries, a well regarded Friday market, bike rental and the canal path right there, with attractions of interest to us in doable distance, possibly using train out and bike back. At present I don’t dare to hope for more than 30 km in a day. Fontenay, Buffon, Alesia, Sémur en Auxois, Ancy-le-Franc, Tanlay? Flavigny? Not sure about the latter, not an anise fan.

Car rental probably from Auxerre, either staying in Auxerre or more rurally for a couple of nights, with ambitions for Guédelon, cave art in Arcy-sur-Cure, Chateau Faulin. Vézelay? This part would have been by bike too, with more time and a better knee, but oh well.

Southwards, with one or more one-night stops, to see some of Bibracte, Autun, Chalon-sur-Saone (photography museum), Tournus and its abbey, Chateau de Cormatin, Roche de Salutré. Turn the car in at Macon-Loché or Chalon-sur-Saone, spend the night in the nicest of those cities and train to Lyon for a few sybaritic days and evenings.

Your views?
The chateau in Ancy-le-Franc can't be visited, unless the policy has changed. But a tour of the inside of Tanlay is recommended.


The pew carvings in the church at the top of Montréal are interesting.


By now the Guédelon chateau must be completed.


all pictures are from this album:

https://flic.kr/s/aHsjoJGfmf
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Old Jul 9th, 2024, 02:39 PM
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Lovely pictures, Michael. Tanlay does look attractive. FYI, Ancy-le-Franc chateau is visitable again.
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Old Jul 9th, 2024, 04:20 PM
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Lovely pictures! Thanks.

The chateau in Ancy-le-Franc has indeed reopened.
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