Nancy/Strasbourg or Toulouse/Albi??

Old Aug 10th, 2017, 06:51 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Nancy/Strasbourg or Toulouse/Albi??

We'll be spending 22 nights in France next May/June--flying into Paris and out of Marseille. I'm going back on forth on what to do the first week. I'm planning 4 nights in Paris (we've been to Paris multiple times) and either two nights in Nancy to see the art nouveau sites and two nights Strasbourg OR 4 nights Toulouse with a daytrip to Albi to see the Lautrec Museum.

For the second and third weeks we'll be exploring the towns of the South of France--I'm thinking of Montpellier, Arles, Avignon, Aix-en-Provence before ending up in Marseille.

We're mainly interested in fine art and decorative art museums and architecture. We prefer towns/cities to small villages. Other than Paris we've been to Lyon (loved it) and Dijon (liked it but preferred Lyon). We will be travelling by train.

I'd appreciate any opinions as I'm going crazy trying to decide. I've been wanting to see Nancy/Strasbourg for a long time but Toulouse sounds great and the train is a bit easier.

Thanks for any help.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:00 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 49,553
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I would opt for Toulouse, one of my favorite cities in France and fortunately just a train ride away from where we live. We go somewhat frequently and always find something new and fascinating to do.
StCirq is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:20 AM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks StCirq, I'm probably leaning towards Toulouse as it's a bit easier and I prefer a longer stay. I see it mentioned in a lot of 'best underrated French cities' lists.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:38 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 21,805
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If going to Toulouse, consider the Ingres museum in Montauban, located in the former bishop's palace. Moissac has an abbey church whose portal is considered a major Romanesque monument.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moissac_Abbey

https://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca...7623877915948/ and subsequent pictures.

Montauban has a nice 17th cent. square:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca...7623877915948/
Michael is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:42 AM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks Michael. I have read about the Ingres Museum (probably in one of your posts!)--it's a definite daytrip consideration.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:44 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,494
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Toulouse, along with Dijon, tie as our second favorite cities in France. Albi is on our list of "top 5" smaller cities.

We also prefer Toulouse over Strasbourg.

We spent 2 weeks in Nancy in 2015 because my wife loves Art Nouveau. We were there for their annual Patrimoine weekend - so even more art nouveau stuff was open. However, except for Place Stanislaus & the art nouveau - Nancy is not nearly as interesting as about 15 other similarly-sized cities we've visited. The countryside there was not as interesting either.

Toulouse & Albi would be my choice. Perhaps next time you are in Paris, take the TGV to Nancy for a day trip. It takes slightly more than 1 1/2 hrs to get there. Toulouse would make your remaining destinations easier to get to also.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:49 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,494
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
PS - on your day trip to Nancy, have breakfast or dinner at the art nouveau Brasserie Excelsior across the street from the train station. We had dinner there on arrival day, and breakfast there before catching our train to Paris.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:49 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 34,242
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
There is no one "correct" answer, all of those places are worth visiting, it's just a different trip-- Toulouse 4 days versus 2 Nancy and 2 Strasbourg.

I've been to all and liked them all, but I wouldn't put Nancy in the category of Toulouse, of course, but it is noteworthy for that Art Nouveau museum.

If Toulouse is a lot easier and fits in better, there is a lot to see there, and it would be something new. I suppose you'd want to see the Dupuy museum for decorative arts. Albi is nice, also.
Christina is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 07:59 AM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks Stu and Christina.

Christina, You're right there's no 'correct' answer and that's why it's driving me crazy trying to decide But I think Toulouse does make more sense this time--and since we seem to get to Paris every couple of years I'll aim to get to Nancy/Strasbourg next time.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 08:01 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 22,768
Likes: 0
Received 6 Likes on 1 Post
As a northeasterner, I am completely prejudiced and would demand that you do Nancy-Metz-Strasbourg (one night in each) just because the area is totally underrated, and particularly Strasbourg provides a totally different experience from what you will see in most of the rest of France. (A lot of Toulouse, for example, looks just like Paris but with warmer weather.)

However, I am pretty sure that whatever area you choose, you will not be disappointed.

Nevertheless, I will just toss in two of my old photo reports (and I could have tossed another one in for Metz, too, but since you didn't mention it...).

Strasbourg in September: http://tinyurl.com/strasinsept

Nancy Place Stanislas: http://tinyurl.com/nancystanislas

Oh, and I also made a report about the art nouveau houses in a Nancy residential district.

Art nouveau Nancy: http://tinyurl.com/artnouveaunancy

I will admit, however, that if you twist my arm, I can also provide a photo report about Toulouse, which is a fantastic city as well.
kerouac is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 08:12 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
kerouac, You've just demonstrated my problem! As soon as I decide on Toulouse, I read something great about Nancy or Strasbourg (and actually I have considered Metz as well, at least to see the Pompidou). That's why my head is spinning.

I love your photo reports and it was one of your reports on the Christmas windows in Paris that inspired us to go at the end of November a few years ago.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 08:46 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 4,412
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It's a difficult call, but I'd opt for Toulouse and Albi this trip as you are planning to spend the rest of your time in the south and it will be more convenient. I'd plan a week the next time visiting Nancy, Strasbourg, and towns along the Route des Vins d'Alsace.
laverendrye is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 09:00 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 7,160
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Have you been to Nice? It seems to fit your interests well: Belle Epoque architecture, lots of art museums in Nice and around. I particularly liked the Fondation Maeght, modern art in a memorable building.
Mimar is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 09:54 AM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks laverendrye and Mimar. I keep debating about Nice (haven't been there)--the museums and architecture do appeal to me and we just watched a documentary about Matisse and Picasso that made Nice look pretty tempting.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 10:00 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We will be travelling by train.>

In case not versed in French trains book TGVs and long-distance trains far in advance to grab limited in number discounted tickets - far cheaper than just showing up and with as many trains as you are taking one of the few who should investigate the France Railpass-good soures of info: www.seat61.com - especially on discounted tickets; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com.

Near Toulouse you can also train to nearby Carcassonne to see a pristine medieval city-citadel (of course cobbled together from rubble in the mid-1800s but still a gem).
PalenQ is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 10:54 AM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3,247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks Pal. I normally buy my tickets ahead to get the cheap price but I'll study the rail pass info to see if it makes sense.
outwest is offline  
Old Aug 10th, 2017, 12:39 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Well you still need to pay with a pass for seat reservations on TGV trains -from a few euros to around 15 on some but most others you can just hop on.
PalenQ is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
DebbieKincan
Europe
13
Oct 13th, 2015 07:51 AM
Myer
Europe
20
Oct 18th, 2013 10:18 AM
youngtom2910
Europe
9
May 25th, 2012 01:34 AM
merl
Europe
11
Mar 15th, 2010 10:35 AM
JessLynn
Europe
4
May 7th, 2008 07:10 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:11 PM.