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Where to stay in South France for one week?

Where to stay in South France for one week?

Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 06:05 AM
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Where to stay in South France for one week?

We are thinking about flying into Paris (3 days) then renting an apartment in the south of France for a week. We are looking for a beautiful, quiet and relaxing environment. I realize there is so much to see and experience, but this will be my husband's first trip to Europe and he is nervous about language barriers, crowds, logistics. I think he will enjoy a slower pace. Open to ideas...
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 07:22 AM
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When is this for? It makes a difference. If your husband doesn't like crowds, stay away from the Cote d'Azur in July and August. Do you want to stay on the coast, or rather inland in Provence? Will you have a car, or use public transport?

Antibes is nice; a pretty town, fairly quiet but still well-connected with train links to Nice, Monaco, Cannes.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 07:44 AM
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I vote for Villefranche-sur-Mer but you might have trouble finding an apartment. Nice will have more choices but will it be slow pace enough for your husband? How about Menton? I still think that he will enjoy Nice by staying away from the busy areas but close enough to the public transportations: train or bus. I went to school in VFM many years ago. Most apartments in walking distance were acquired by the institute for their students. If you have a car, you might be able to find something on the higher areas.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 09:00 AM
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The south of France is huge. What area do you have in mind? The Dordogne? Provence? The Côte d'Azur? Pays Basque? Pyrénées? Languedoc-Roussillon? They are all completely different. If you're not aware of the vastly different regions of "the south of France" I suggest you get a guidebook or two and see what appeals to you. It's like deciding between Miami, the Bahamas, Texas, Arizona, and Baja California.

When are you traveling? How are you traveling?
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 10:08 AM
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Depending on when, The Luberon is a great place to stay for a week and explore the wonderful non-coastal villages of Provence.

We spent 2 weeks in September last year and 5 weeks this past winter doing just that; wonderful!

We stayed at a gite here; the owners are British so no language issues and are so helpful with the area:

http://www.accommodationinprovence.com/
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 11:11 AM
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Allow me to recommend the Michelin Green Guide to France, which will be useful for research on the various regions so that you can narrow down your options. Once you've done that, you should get the regional Green Guide.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2013, 11:39 PM
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Consider learning a little French before going -- there are CDs, local non-credit courses, private tudors, etc I'm a big fan of St. Remy in Provence.
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Old Jun 27th, 2013, 01:13 PM
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Thank you you all for your input. We will be traveling in early September and plan to use the train from Paris then rent a car. We are brainstorming at this point. Thank you for the resources. I've always found this site to be helpful when planning a trip.
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Old Jun 27th, 2013, 02:39 PM
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I might base myself in Avignon in such a case -- giant car pickup zone at the TGV station and most of the best places to visit within a 30 minute drive -- except the Med of course, if you need to see the coast.
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