Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Provence - Selecting a Base for Train/Bus Accessible Destinations

Provence - Selecting a Base for Train/Bus Accessible Destinations

May 15th, 2011, 03:08 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,127
Provence - Selecting a Base for Train/Bus Accessible Destinations

I'm in the second phase of planning this trip. The first phase determined that I should move forward.

I realize that we will not be able to visit the smallest of villages. However, I have compiled what I think is a good list of train/bus accessible destinations.

This trip is for June/July 2011. It appears we will be able to arrive in Marseille by plane. We'll spend approximately eight days in Provence and fly to Paris for a couple of more days (we've been to Paris on three previous occasions) before returning home to South Florida.

I realize we way not visit all of the following but it is a list of what I think are train/bus accessible destinations of interest that are within an hour of potential bases:

Aix-en_Provence
Avignon
Orange
Arles
St Remy
L'Isle-Sur-La-Sorgue
Montpellier
Nimes
Les Baux - not sure if accessible
Uzes - not sure if accessible

Since we will be arriving in Marseille, I imaging the base (possibly two of them) should not be at an extremity (such as Montpellier).

Also, since we probably wouldn't want to be daytripping every day, bases(s) should be able to occupy us for at least a day or two.

Transportation-wise Avignon appears to fit but I'm not sure about it.

Which of the above locations (or possibly others) would be good bases for this trip?

Thanks.
Myer is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 05:03 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 12,269
lecalendal.com

Arles

works well for this for me lots of history

sunfrance.com other options

Aix a bit too spread out more expensive touristy

but would be my #2...

Happy Travels!
qwovadis is offline  
May 15th, 2011, 05:18 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,001
Just a question about why not a car?
I would leave Montpelier out--and Aix (for me).
I would make it Avignon.
Gretchen is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 05:25 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,001
Have you googled for bus accessibility to different places. For example I googled for "Avignon to Gordes by bus" and found a thread right here.
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-to-gordes.cfm
Are you wanting to see the Pont du Gard, for example. It is sort of on the way to Uzes.
For an 8 day trip, you are going to be at the mercy of the bus schedules for many of these places, which is fine, but that time element needs to be considered for your final destianations, I think.
chances are you can get almost anywhere you want to go but you'll need to really schedule it well.
Gretchen is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 06:10 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 2,672
I agree with Gretchen. You will be at the mercy of bus schedules and, therefore, will have more options if you stay in Avignon. And one other note. Don't fly to Paris - take the TGV from Avignon.
mamcalice is offline  
May 15th, 2011, 07:55 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,127
Gretchen, Good ideas. Thanks.

mamcalice, Why not fly to Paris. A lot less expensive I think.
Myer is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 08:10 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 7,157
Re: flying to Paris. You have to pay to get yourself to the airport (Marseilles?) and pay to get into Paris from the airport there. If you buy your train tickets early, you should be able to get a very good fare. Of course, you will have to transport yourselves from central Avignon to the TGV station on the outskirts.
Mimar is offline  
May 15th, 2011, 08:23 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,127
Gretchen, I didn't think Gordes was accessible by bus. Thanks. I'll look into this.

It looks like Avignon might be better as a base for connection purposes but Arles for it's sights.

Correct?
Myer is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 08:40 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 47,879
If you really are planning this trip for next month or July, then it very well could be cheaper to fly to Paris, as you've missed the opportunity to get the really cheap PREM fares on the TGV. Getting to the Avignon TGV station is a breeze - there's a bus. But yes, it's a hassle to fly that short leg.

I would choose Avignon, though I prefer Arles.
StCirq is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 09:45 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 23,018
It looks like Avignon might be better as a base for connection purposes but Arles for it's sights.

Correct?

√I agree with you and StCirq. But Arles is OK for travel also and DH and I liked it better. Aix was better for bus for us-we never used its train station.

Montpellier train very easy and convenient. Could you spend 4 days in Aix (or Arles or Avignon) and 4 days in Montpellier? Go to Paris from Montpellier-I'm sure there's a TGV route there now. What say other Fodorites??
TDudette is offline  
May 15th, 2011, 10:29 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,817
I think Avignon is the best location for Bus and Train options, and probably the most central for the things you want to do. Uzes and Les Baux are accessible by bus, but Uzes may not have any schedule that makes it feasible for a day trip. I think Les Baux probably has more buses from Nimes or Arles, also. Aix isn't on the same rail line as Avignon and doesn't have as many direct options. Les Baux is accessible by bus from Arles and Marseille, I know. Not sure about Avignon.

The Les Baux website seems to say the only buses are from Arles. Now that is regular public buses, there may be some special tourism day tours and you'd have to find those things out in the Avignon or other city tourist office. They will often be more convenient in schedules.

I think this is one places that lists a lot of the regional bus lines, it has lots of schedules http://www.lepilote.com

This place shows bus lines to/from Uzes
http://www.edgard-transport.fr/plan/?rub_code=5

doesn't look feasible to Avignon, takes hours, but you can search. Nimes is more do-able to/from Uzes You have too many places to see, anyway, so you can't see them all
Christina is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 11:15 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,865
Hi Myer,

I'll be in Arles for a week this June too, and I don't drive. I've found a good tour group to see Gordes & Roussillon & some lavender fields; here's a link:

http://www.city-discovery.com/arles/

This will be the very first tour I've ever joined (as far as I can remember), so I'm not wild about that, but I think it's a good compromise if you'd like to save some carbon emissions.

Anyway, hope you find a good solution!

s
swandav2000 is offline  
May 15th, 2011, 11:49 AM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,127
TYPO!!!!!

I meant to write June/July 2012 and not 2011.

I have enough on my plate this year having just been to Savannah & Charleston, taking my daughter and one of the granddaughters to Yosemite next month and going to Banff, Victoria & Vancouver with my wife in July.

That's June/July 2012.
Myer is online now  
May 15th, 2011, 01:13 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 47,879
Well, then, make a note to go online three months before your travel time and book a PREM fare from Avignon to Paris - way easier than a flight.

As for Montpellier, IMO it's by far the most interesting city of all the ones mentioned, but I agree it's probably too far west to be the best base for getting to the places you want to visit.
StCirq is online now  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
abt021
Europe
9
Apr 19th, 2013 08:16 PM
Myer
Europe
13
May 7th, 2012 11:29 AM
Brazilnut
Europe
21
Jul 18th, 2007 04:01 AM
Cimbrone
Europe
5
Nov 30th, 2006 02:29 PM
Mariarosa
Europe
13
Feb 9th, 2003 01:44 PM

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 -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 01:46 PM.