Paris and Provence tours for seniors

Old Feb 17th, 2014, 11:57 AM
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Paris and Provence tours for seniors

Can anyone recommend tours of France focusing on Paris and Provence? We are in our 70's and want to travel to France in 2015. It will be the first trip we have made to France. We would like to spend 4 or 5 days in each area. We need to go with a tour group of some sort. We are in fairly good health and have no disabilities. We would like a group for seniors. We would want time for our own interests. We do need to consider the expense. I have looked at AARP and Collette groups. Both have plans we like except the number of days in each area are not as many as we would like. If there are other senior groups to consider, we would appreciate information about them.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 12:00 PM
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Have you looked at what http://www.roadscholar.org/n/country...ioncode=europe (used to be Elder Hostel) offers?
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 01:15 PM
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You can extend and add extra days to your hotels on each end of the tours.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 01:18 PM
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Road Scholar is the only tour I know of that is geared toward seniors but they now allow all ages. Here's their Provence to Paris tour; there may be others from this company. It looks like a good tour but it covers more than Paris and Provence and only gives one day in Paris. You could always add on a few days in Paris and hire guides if you can't sight see on your own.

http://www.roadscholar.org/n/program...px?id=1-12QEW8

It's hard to find tours of that short duration (8 to 10 days) that cover only Provence and Paris.
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Old Feb 17th, 2014, 01:25 PM
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Road scholar is the old Elderhostel and would be excellent.
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Old Feb 18th, 2014, 08:41 AM
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Tauck does Provence/Paris as well. They're more costly than Road Scholar, but accommodations are quite a few steps above what Road Scholar uses. Tauck is not just for seniors, but many are.
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Old Feb 18th, 2014, 10:09 AM
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Have a look at the Grand Circle Rhône River cruise. Very comfortable and lots to see with excellent guides.
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Old Feb 18th, 2014, 10:10 AM
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You could also add the Seine cruise by Grand Circle, which would give you time in Paris.
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Old Feb 18th, 2014, 11:13 AM
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I think the combination you are looking for would be difficult to attain using off the shelf products. Group tours targeted are not designed to offer time for your own interests. They offer bits of this and bits of that on many different areas for those who mainly want to visit area with minimum amount of planning on their own.

If there are organizations specialized in whatever special interest you have, and if they offer tours, that might be one area you might explore. These members only type of tours are generally not advertized to the public.

As one poster indicated, Tauck does offer one week Provence tour. They don't necessarily target seniors, but the price tag discourages younger families with other financial responsibilities.

Otherwise, you might consider doing it on your own. Whatever you might have against doing on your own may be valid. They can also be unfounded and you might have boxed yourself within an imaginary confine. There are many here who travel in your age group. Some alone! Of course, many have been doing this for a long time. There has been some seniors who stepped out of their comfort zone and came back triumphant in having done a trip on their own. They can't wait to go back, on their own.

Some imagine a trip to Provence means driving from town to town. One can do this, but one can just as well stay in Avignon, a trivial one train trip from Paris, then sign up for local day trips to different parts of Provence. You control how many of these you care to do.
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 04:41 AM
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My wife and I have used tours as well as winging it on our own on our 20 plus trips to Europe. Longest 34 days, shortest 1 week in Paris. Since 1984, things have changed as regards transportation with the tremendous increase in TGV service in France. We booked two weeks in Paris in April and used that as our base, taking day trips at speeds up to almost 200 mph. We have visited almost every region of France. There is nothing like walking to the market street for fresh everything and picking up a bottle of Crozes Hermitage to go with your fresh made fois gras slathered on a warm baguette then dipping in your home made bœuf bourguignon (I use Anthony Bordain's recipe because Julia's takes two days and Tony's is just as good) You can go for a day or two to the chateau country or up to the D-day Beaches or over to Brussels at speed, always having that base to come home to. We use Euro-Partners service to take us and pick us up at the station and they have a rate special for friends of Parisforseniors.com I met the owner of Parisforseniors.com and they have a newsletter that I am going to contribute some travel tips that I have developed over the years. Like Fodor's it is free, but it focuses on us (age 74) with realistic travel ideas. Armed with my Fodor's book, I just called ahead to one of my top three pensions listed in the book and did 34 days with no reservations and always got one of the top three choices in each city in those 11 countries we visited. Thank you Fodors for the years of help you have given to us. We were guests of a company for a week at the Cavellieri Hilton in Rome and our first pension ever was Pensione Brittania in Florence on the Arno that we found in Fodors and we paid $20 a night back in 1984. Just unreal.
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 08:21 AM
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Unless you have a very valid reason for wanting to go on a tour, give some serious thought to going on your own. My Mom and I did our first road trip through France when she was 71 and I was 47. We did our second trip five years later - these were 3 week trips and by the second one, my Mom had had two hip replacements. We went back in 2005 and 2010, using vacation rentals as a home base and day tripping, and by then my Mom was using a four-wheel walker. Traveling in France, even by car, is really pretty easy. Signage is good and we've found the French to be very helpful, even with our limited French language skills. If lack of confidence is the reason you don't want to go on your own, rethink it. If you haven't seen Rick Steves' travel shows, check some out at the library. He gives really sound advice on independent travel.
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 09:09 AM
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Has anyone noticed the OP posted 5 months ago and hasn't returned?
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Old Nov 30th, 2014, 11:17 AM
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Oh wow, I just looked at the Paris for Senior's link, and I know Keith Spicer. Not personally, but he used to be a big deal in Canada, and in fact taught me first year Poli Sci in, uh, 1966, so he must be a bona fide senior, 'cause I am!

Is Nice a good base for doing the south? We spent a couple of nights there a few years back and loved it. But then again, I think Arles would be good as well--I'm sure it's different now, but I sure loved it in 1970!
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Old Nov 30th, 2014, 12:45 PM
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I'd do something like Avignon or St. Remy as a base for Provence.
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Old Nov 30th, 2014, 08:30 PM
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Nice is a great base for the eastern part of Provence, which includes the Côte d'Azur. Excellent rail and bus connections let you go where you want at your own pace without the hassle of a car.

For western Provence, the area around St-Remy is good--but in western Provence you really need a car. Buses are infrequent and geared to school and commute schedules; trains run primarily between large cities such as Arles and Avignon.
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Old May 7th, 2015, 03:59 AM
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I highly recommend this site :http://provence-french-riviera-tourism.com/ They're specialized in the Provence region and The French Riviera. They also provide conections with Paris. I've travelled with them, I chose the Couleurs de Provence and it was perfect, they also offer both gastronomic and oenological tours. Provence is a wonderful region, specialy during springtime and the summer, the hilltop villages, the gastronomy, wines, Avignon, the coulours of this region are just amazing. If you come here you won't regret it!
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