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The long awaited trip report! Part 2 France

The long awaited trip report! Part 2 France

Old Jul 15th, 2013, 07:46 AM
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Claire, you have won me over. Reading the pre-trip threads, I thought the trip would be a disaster, but as it turns out you and your mother and husband have been resourceful, coped with everything, found a level of activity that suits your kids as well as yourselves, and kept on going. And you've remained so positive! It sounds like the four of you (now including your husband) are having a great time. I'm really happy that you're enjoying it so much. And I appreciate that you're taking us along day by day.

Your mom is a trooper! That must be where you get your energy.

Next trip you'll be better prepared. You can apply what you've learned, slow down and stay somewhere you've loved on this trip, read up on the background if you want to (or don't bother if you don't want to), and do a little budgeting.

But for now, be in the moment and soak up the good times with your family in France. Bonne route!
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 08:12 AM
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Anyone else want to say, "Shut up, StCirq," or am I alone? I'll take the hate, no worries.

We get it, that you, StCirq, and you alone, seem to know how to best appreciate your beloved France. Please do not continue to inject your pretentiousness into our enjoyment of Claire's and her family's holiday.

I am enjoying Claire's report. Her holiday is not one I would endeavor to undertake, but I've come to like her style.
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 08:17 AM
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Still loving your trip report, Claire! Can't wait to hear more.
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 08:23 AM
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FWIW I think Claire meant to type "it's NOT just a chateau"...!

Glad you have enjoyed Sarlat, Claire, and hope you will enjoy Carcassonne also. I am jealous that your next stop after that is Barcelona! I just love it. An incredibly beautiful and romantic city. Hope you will be doing a trip report tagged Spain too
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 08:27 AM
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I got that typo too, and Claire confirmed it. That said, I do like to know the history--and Claire DID soak it up. Watching the Tour and the wonderful helicopter shots of chateaux and castles and such is truly special--and looking at the moats around many of them and thinking that some of the movies we've all seen where they lower the drawbridge really did happen is fun.
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 08:53 AM
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I also thought Claire must have forgotten the 'not',(it's not just a chateau) as she obviously thoroughly enjoyed the castle and its history.

Everyone enjoys travelling in their own way. Last night a friend raved about a 3 week guided tour of Europe that she, husband & 2 children have just completed. Not for me at all. But they loved it all. It is just arrogance to think we know the only way to enjoy a country.
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 02:20 PM
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"Heard of the Hundred Years' War? Eléanore d'Aquitaine?"

Known in France (and in proper French) as Aliénor d'Aquitaine or Eléonore d'Aquitaine. Just saying ..........
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 02:36 PM
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Often i read more about a place I've particularly enjoyed afterwards and that can be more meaningful than studying about it beforehand. Hampton Court Palace springs to mind.

Claire for your next trip something to keep in mind is that you seem to be enjoying smaller places more than the big cities. Which is fine and not meant at all as a criticism.
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 11:38 PM
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Morning everyone just a quick report .
Got to carcassone ... Wow! Another amazing place! So glad we got to spend a night here as the crowds are full on during the day.

I chose hotel de chateau to stay at over at ... It is literally just outside the old city wall so location if you have a car is perfect. It is just incredible expensive for what you get!

So we got here by 2pm and went over to the old city for lunch ... It was so hot that we just looked for a table for four in shade... Found it and enjoyed another delicious meal. I really am loving all the duck dishes ! From here we did a little wander but it was just so hot that we decided to go back to our hotel and have a swim.

This turned out to be a swim for hubby and my son while I stayed in and let my 2yr old have a big sleep so we could do the old city at night too.

This worked. Out perfectly. Again our tea was delicious and again it was just finding a spot that suited our situation rather then what they served. Then we wandered the streets in the cool summer night.

The shops stay open till after 8pm most started to close around 10pm. There was a wonderful lolled shop that the children loved! Big barrels of treats that you picked and then weighed out at the end.

But the most impressive thing about last night was just walking the outskirts of the city's and looking art the buildings all lit up. It really just felt so special to be able to experience something like that! So much so I sent hubby back in once the kids were asleep just so he could really take it all in without having to watch the kids etc.

He loved it! Artic monkeys were playing so he said it was pretty amazing wandering the streets and listening to that music.

Anyway off we go to Barcelona. A new trip thread will be done for this. I have loved France so much and am seriously wanting to come back ASAP to see more of this beautiful country! I only hope I continue to enjoy the other places we see as I would be more then happy to just stay in France now I am here!
Anyway must be off!
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Old Jul 15th, 2013, 11:46 PM
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Continue to enjoy! Carcassone is indeed beautiful at night.
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 12:09 AM
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Carcassone is often considered a real tourist trap, but you've made it sound lovely.
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 08:14 AM
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Carcassonne feels like a tourist trap during the day, with the other thousands of tourists there, but in the evenings and early mornings, when you have the place to yourself, it is really stunning.
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 08:42 AM
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Yes I can totally see how that interpretation could be made but if you can stay and walk it at night it was magical! Like I said I sent hubby back to do it without the kids ... It would of been so romantic to walk hand in hand through those streets at night
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 09:13 AM
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I look forward to your trip report everyday! I feel like I am on vacation with you. Plus, I love France! After you get home, Claire, you might like this recent trip report of France. It is entertaining with a lot of good information.
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...a-in-paris.cfm
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 09:26 AM
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Lovely! Makes me want to go explore France!
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 11:14 AM
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Sounds like you discovered Le Cure Gourmand. I'm still missing their lollipops...
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Old Jul 16th, 2013, 03:27 PM
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Crazy in BARCELONA! Carry on!

------> http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-barcelona.cfm
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Old Jul 19th, 2013, 10:26 AM
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hotel de chateau???

CLAIRE(and ONLY Claire, PLEASE)... Laughs...

Pray tell what room(s) did you get? The junior suite, priced at $375 per night USA dollars is only suitable for two grown folks.

I am/was considering staying here as I have one or two nights in Carcassone. I'm just not going to be in the room that long to justify the expense--for me.

Chateau de Palaja might be the one for me (smile)...

Keep going!

I LOVE Spain...
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Old Jul 22nd, 2013, 01:23 PM
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Oaktown . . not sure what we it was but it was a room with a double bed and a fold out sofa bed . . for the price...290euros! I wasn't impressed at the size but as a positive the location was great if you had a car . . there was a pool . .it was only for a night . .and the pool and beauty products were great! Our other option was the best western and the prices were pretty much on par and after seeing that I was glad with my choice.
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Old Mar 18th, 2015, 10:49 AM
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