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Travelling to Europe for 8/9weeks with 4yr and 2yr old - Advice needed

Travelling to Europe for 8/9weeks with 4yr and 2yr old - Advice needed

Old Jan 31st, 2013, 12:12 PM
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annhig,

We use viamichelin all the time.

It's a good idea to add not only time for stops but for traffic--maybe 20-30%.
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 12:55 PM
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interesting cath - michelin says that it's 6 hours between Innsbruck and Prague, and 6 1/2 -7 hours from Sarlat to Barcelona.

both are certainly long days, but doable if they are not repeated too often.

I think one long drive is preferable to lots of little ones, especially with kids in tow.
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 01:06 PM
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I agree, I'm not saying don't do it, particularly in August with lots of daylight. Just noting to be aware that ime the quoted times are optimistic.

With luck, kids conk out for long periods, always a bonus on long drives!
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 01:10 PM
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The problem with the drive from Sarlat to Barcelona in peak season is that at some point you either have to go over the Pyrénées (PITA if you're not on a leisurely trip through the area) or take the coastal road (PITA if you're not on a fun beach trip - traffic can be a horror in summer). I'd be surprised if someone could make it with 2 small kids in the car in under 8 hours (and that wouldn't even count getting to lodgings in Barcelona once there).
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 01:37 PM
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SC,

Good points.

Anyway, OP wants to do Carcassonne which would break the drive to Barcelona and of course offers a fantasy castle as well.
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 02:44 PM
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Morning! Sorry about the confusion re rooms . .yes It should read 2 bedrooms . . . the two routes where recommended to me in past threads. We really don't know much about the south of France . .everywhere looks just beautiful . .so I am more then happy to go off your recommendations. I had a look at a few places last night . . .

http://www.vrbo.com/91510ha

http://www.vrbo.com/439272ha?unitId=1160235

http://www.vrbo.com/631640ha ( which looks like a favourite but just not sure of the location and the drive to barcelona etc)

Anyway, as always SC,Cath,ann,janisj and the others . .thank you!
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 02:51 PM
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You really can't, IMO, drive from Sarlat to Barcelona in a day with a stop in Carcassonne. Best to spend the night somewhere in the area (not Carcassonne itself necessarily). And then they'll be pretty much forced onto that coastal route, which can be jammed.
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 03:41 PM
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Oh SC . . what did you recommend again? 30th June-5th July?
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 03:45 PM
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Not sure what your question is, crazy. Just saying that the long haul from Sarlat to Barcelona can't be accomplished in a day if you plan to stop in Carcassonne. Are you saying you have 5 days for this leg? Then of course you can do it. One day? No. And BTW, you are hitting all the "hot spots" on these planned routes, but missing out on a load of gorgeous venues.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 12:50 AM
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I literally lose the thread some times.

So, total of 5/6 days between Paris and Barcelona? How do you want to split that time?

Your vrbo posts 1 and 2 look fine for the Loire. The 3rd is west of the Dordogne so is more on your itinerary 1 path.

If you drive from Sarlat in the Dordogne to Barcelona it is a long day. My thought was to break the drive in or near Carcassonne with an overnight. In the summer, the sheer logistics of getting in and out of there and walking around the walled city would be 3 hours.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 04:09 AM
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Thanks sc and cath ... So if I have 6 days should I do a night somewhere before I hit sarlat ...stay in sarlat for 4nights and then carcassonne for one night?

The choices are based off grouches we get over here ... Are there better spots??? It all looks amazing so I can't see how I could go wrong in France.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 04:32 AM
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Grouches? Have no idea what that means. I wouldn't actually stay in Carcassonne, as I said before. As Cath says, it's going to take a minimum of 3 hours just to park and visit the walled city, but it's not an ideal place to spend a night, whether in the upper or lower town. You'd be better off lodging in, say, Limoux or Quillan, or Narbonne.

And yes, you should break up the drive from Paris to Sarlat - it's a horrible drive (if that's your plan - I can't really follow this plan, either, cath). I wouldn't even do it - I'd take the train. But if you do drive, stop at least halfway if you can.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 05:03 AM
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Well .... We haven't got the lease booed in yet ... So trains can be an option but I thought a car would give us more flexibility to see the surroundings ... I see I could catch a train from Paris to Barcelona and miss the south of France ??? Then train from Barcelona to somewhere in France and pick up our car ... If you all really believe this is the best idea.

Grouches - pamphlets (iPad over ride again)

Hubby thinks its hillerous that I place so much trust into strangers! Hahaha .. Sorry if I am all over the place! I am taking on the advice!
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 07:40 AM
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The thing is , you don't have to trust strangers, but you can listen and read what they say , then you can do some reasearch to see if what people say is supportable by some facts.. so if someone says something like " the drive is more like 6 hours then 4 " thats easy to research. Same with things like rental drop off fees, or what sites are in a place, etc.. so I think you are actually being really smart, you don't have to accept anything anyone says, but at least it gives you alot to think about and look into. Your familys trip is going to be unique to what your family wants to do, but a few facts being straightened out can really help make the logistics smoother.

Your trip will end up wonderful because you are doing all this reasearch, and I think you are probably smart enough to sift through opinions of taste, facts, and what may or may not apply specifically to your familys travel style.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 05:32 PM
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I know ...and I really think the advice we have been given is helping us and I am really THANKFUL I am off to a travel expo today to get some more info.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 05:42 PM
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Prague apartment : Thoughts? Is it in a good location?

http://www.vrbo.com/448782ha
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 05:43 PM
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or are we better in the old town?

http://www.vrbo.com/3490176ha
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 08:04 PM
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We rented a flat over New Year's week just around the corner from your Old Town choice (3490176), and enjoyed the area very much. The walk to the Palladium, a large shopping mall with restaurants and a grocery store was about 5 minutes away; and the walk to Stare Mesto (Old Town) about the same. While not lively at night, we felt very safe being out, and even allowing our children (11, 16) to walk the dog together.
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 11:10 PM
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So first stop from Paris is somewhere in Loire-Valley . . This is in Amboise

http://www.vrbo.com/397969

so we would stay here for 2 nights. Is this a good location?
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Old Feb 1st, 2013, 11:30 PM
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crazy that place in Amboise sounds wondeful. I have stayed in Amboise for a few nights to tour the chateaus and it is a wonderful base for Loire Valley.
I also note this apartment has a total bonus( and you will learn why eventually..lol) save up your laundry for here as it has a SEPERATE washer and dryer, not the evil COMBO machines.. total bonus! lol
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