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PROVENCE AND THE FRENCH RIVIERA

Old Mar 16th, 2010, 03:30 PM
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PROVENCE AND THE FRENCH RIVIERA

I have finally bought my plane ticket and need lots of help for my trip. I will be arriving in Marseille on Saturday morning at around 9:35 AM May 15,2010. I really don't want to stay in Marseille. I will leave France on Sunday May 23 and head for Germany. Will leave by train or plane to Germany (not sure which way to go).
For this leg of my journey I would like to see everything. I don't like big cities. I am looking for wonderful places to take pictures. In eight years of traveling I usually have very energetic plans. I want to take in as much as I can in 9 days. Here are my must see areas to visit ending up in or near Nice.
I want to go to Luberon Region. What to see? What small cities and what to see?
I would like to take a bus to Canes and Monaco. I love the sea. I like flee markets, and outdoor stuff. I have been to a lot of museums in Europe so this time it is the scenery and flavor of the area. Hope I have given you enough info. Oh, I love B&B’s. I am a single person traveling alone and need some help with where to stay in a modest price range. To me modest is around 60.00 to 70.00 euro. I hope lots of people give me ideas. I will post another Cry for Help in the second part of my journey, Germany and Bavaria.
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Old Mar 17th, 2010, 09:51 AM
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I am an American guide living in Provence. Flea markets and vintage buying are my specialty so I hope I can help you with your questions.

The Luberon is a good region for those who like villages and countryside. Must see villages are Lourmarin, Gordes, and Roussillon. Be sure to go to the national park (le sentier des ochres) in Roussillon and give yourself at least 45 minutes to wander. Have your camera with you here and at all times. There is spectacular beauty all around.

Stop at Bonnieux to take in the view of the Luberon valley, and climb the steps to the old church at the top if you have a lot of energy.

A great outdoor vintage market is Isle sur la Sorgue on Sunday mornings. The produce and food market is also great - be sure to arrive in the morning. (I would avoid the other villages on the weekends if you can - lots of tourists.)

A few km away from Gordes is the Abbaye de Senanque, a living monastery where you can attend the vespers. Go to their website for the information. You will also see their lavendar plantations.

Visit Cassis and take a boat ride to see the calanques. Go for the three calanques tour.

You will need a car to do all this. Give yourself a lot of time to take in the nature and scenery in all these places. They all offer gorgeous walks.

A great small city is Aix en Provence. Produce and food markets every day and housewares and a small vintage market on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

Bon voyage!
Jill Mitchell
www.leTrip.org
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Old Mar 17th, 2010, 10:10 AM
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Jill, thanks for the info. I will be going to Provence for the first time so I need all the help I could get.
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Old Dec 2nd, 2010, 01:10 AM
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Thanks for the info Jill
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Old Dec 7th, 2010, 05:50 AM
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To Jill Mitchell
we were thinking of doing something similar to yourself. Do you have a Sarl and/or a Siret number for your business ?
W
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Old Dec 7th, 2010, 07:13 AM
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We were in Provence and the Riviera a few years ago, and I agree with Jill's comments. The Luberon is beautiful. Lourmarin is a good base when in this area - big enough to have plenty to see and do, but still a very picturesque village. Even though it is not a hill town, it is just a short drive to some spectacular hill towns. Because it's not up a steep hill, Lourmarin is easy to get in and out of.
As for a town to stay on the sea, Sainte Maxime is a very pleasant small resort town with a nice beach. It is just a short bike ride from the very upscale (and expensive) St. Tropez, but Sainte Maxime is quite beautiful in itself. It There are many small hotels, some right across the road from the beach, you may find something in your price range in May.
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Old Dec 7th, 2010, 01:10 PM
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For B&Bs, try http://www.gites-de-france.com/gites/uk/bed_breakfasts . Most of them are outside large towns, so a car might be necessary for transportation. We've been happy with the 2 ears of corn (2 star) establishments. For example, the first establishment listed when specifying the Provence area and a 2 ears of corn limit gives a price of 50 to 69 euros for a single person, but it is two km. out of town.
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Old Dec 7th, 2010, 05:58 PM
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We stayed here 6 nights last spring in the small hilltop village of Venasque in the Vaucluse section of Provence. You will need a car. Many sites are within a short distance, such as Avignon, Gordes, Abbaye de Senanque and Roussillon to name a few. The hostess Josy speaks English and was very helpful in directing us to the local sights. The Village of Venasque is very small with just a couple of restruants and shops, but in a beautiful location. We stayed in the room listed at 55 euros and it was very confortable. Great breakfast each morning.

http://www.masdukairos.com/site%20gb/index.htm
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Old Dec 7th, 2010, 06:00 PM
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I just noticed that the origional poster posted last March and is probably no longer in need if this information.
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Old Dec 7th, 2010, 08:50 PM
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That's what happens when we skip the details.
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Old Jan 12th, 2011, 11:37 AM
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That's ok, I'm enjoying the info!
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Old Mar 3rd, 2011, 12:02 AM
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Thanks again
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