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Old Dec 10th, 2010, 02:57 AM
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pyrenees

scooterjuly

Saw a posting by ScooterJuly, mentioning Bagneres de Luchon, in the Pyrenees.

I am just beginning my planning for a trip in May of 11. Love to drive and see much scenery. Plan is to fly into and out of Barcelona.

For some reason, I would like to see:
Andorra,
the coast over near San Sebastian
and all the scenery in between.

Do you have a recommended route that might include those areas, as well as Bagneres de Luchon?
From my beginning map search, I am unclear as to how the roads are in those areas.

Thanks,
Ed Kelly
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Old Dec 10th, 2010, 03:04 AM
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The roads in general are fine although once you get up INTO some areas they are, as you might expect, somewhat winding and twisting but all were in good repair and well-marked when we drove in the area two years ago.
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Old Dec 10th, 2010, 04:51 AM
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The roads are fine -- I have been over most of the passes between France and Spain and have been to Andorra at least 20 times. But it definitely takes some precise mountain driving and constant gear shifting.

However, May is a bit early for all of the passes to be open.
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Old Dec 10th, 2010, 07:24 AM
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If snow conditions permit (i.e. it's gone), I think that the area around Gavarnie should be visited to experience the high Pyrenees.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca/...7623717915043/

On the Spanish side, Taüll is definitely worth a visit for its Romanesque churches.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca/...7623190654780/

And San Juan de la Peña, if crossing back to Spain via Jaca.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca/...7623190654780/

Otherwise you might want to stay on the French side and see some of the French Basque country on the way to San Sebastian.
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Old Dec 10th, 2010, 12:21 PM
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I was in the Pyrenees the at the end of the first week of May and some roads had only just opened, and one road I took became so fogged in it really was impossible to see any more than two or three feet in front of you. You should consult with locals every day, and twice a day, and on the road. Sudden storms or ice are not unheard of. But when it was dry and sunny, I found all the roads good, although some are mile upon mile of hairpiin turns.

I criss crossed between Spain and France, beginning in San Sebastian and ending up in Barcelona.

I found none of them particularly interesting (I didn't visit Taull), and generally felt the tourist reports and download guides oversold the towns. What was interesting is the scenery of the high Pyrenees. That time of year is so off-season -- too late for skiers, to early for families -- that we didn't bother to book anything, and found loads of empty hotels.

You might want to leave your trip fairly open. And you might consider an open jaw flight so you don't need to back track to Barcelona.
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Old Dec 10th, 2010, 12:22 PM
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Sorry for my word omission!!! I meant to type:

I found none of the towns particularly interesting. -- meaning the towns in the Pyrenees. I think San Sebastian is absolutely marvelous.
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