Luberon or Vaucluse? (Long)

Mar 30th, 2007, 10:18 AM
  #1  
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Luberon or Vaucluse? (Long)

As part of a longer trip, will probably be able to get to Provence for the first time this coming September.

Trying to arrange for 5 days, maybe even 7. Will almost certainly have a rental car (though I'd rather not, as this is a solo trip and I'll have no one to naggyvate, oops, navigate for me.)

I've been reading about Provence on this site and others for years, so I'm pretty well aware of the many lovely places to visit, sights to see, and stuff to eat...it all sounds wonderful so I'm not ruling anything out or circling anything as an absolute must-see above all others.

Are you bored yet? I will almost certainly be flying into Marseilles and getting the car there or near there.

Sooo...which area would you choose for this amount of time? Are the driving distances not so great between the highlights of each, making this question immaterial?

And finally, would you spend 2 or 3 days in one spot and the next few elsewhere? Usually I don't mind moving a bit, but could probably get a better nightly rate if stay put, n'est ce pas? I'll probably turn in the car at/near Avignon and train to Paris for a few days before flying home, if that makes any difference.

Thanks for your kind indulgence.

Robdaddy is offline  
Mar 30th, 2007, 10:37 AM
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The Luberon is an area within the Department of the Vaucluse. Kind of like a county within a state in the US.

I've never encountered a hotel discount for staying many days instead of just a few - but I've never asked.

For first timers, I recommend splitting the time between St Remy & the Luberon. St Remy will give you a medium sized village "look & feel", while the Luberon will provide you with more "out in the country". I also think the Luberon & Alpillies (St Remy) have different enough geography to offer some diversity to your surroundings.

Stu Dudley
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Mar 30th, 2007, 10:45 AM
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Thanks, Stu. I was hoping you'd chime in with your considerable experience.

Really wasn't thinking about hotels, more about a small apt. or even a gite if I stay in one location for a week.

Will hotel rates have dropped a bit by mid to late Sept.?
Robdaddy is offline  
Mar 30th, 2007, 11:09 AM
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Robdaddy, I think you could do it either way. You could break your five to seven days into two blocks, and split your time between St-Remy and a Luberon village, as Stu suggests. You'd see more of the Provence so many of us love, but you'd more likely find yourself in hotels or B&Bs.

On the other hand, if you settle in one place for five or seven nights, you are more likely to be able to find a gite or an apartment. (Bear in mind, though, that most of these places rent by the week, typically from Saturday to Saturday. You will find exceptions to the rule, but I suspect you'll have less choice.)

If I had to choose between the two approaches, I'd select the latter, but that's largely because of our touring style. We like to settle into a house and to preapre some of our own food, even if only for a week. You can also cover a surprising amount of ground on days trips.

If I had to choose one place as a "Provence 101: First Impressions," I'd choose a village in the Luberon. You can easily fill a week there and you won't get bored.

There shouldn't be any problem dropping your rental back at Avignon TGV. It's also fairly easy to get to as it is outside Avignon's ring road.

Anselm
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Mar 30th, 2007, 08:20 PM
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Thanks, Anselm.

Anyone else care to make suggestions or comments?
Robdaddy is offline  
Mar 31st, 2007, 12:50 AM
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Don't think you can count on hotels and B&Bs dropping rates in September as it still pretty much high season here. Our rates, for example, drop to low season in October. Also, don't leave it for too long as this year France is hosting the Rugby World Cup and Marseille is one of the main sights for the matches. My cousin works at the tourist office in Aix and told me the other day that all the major hotels in both Marseille and Aix are already sold out.

-Kevin
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