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TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

Any travel recs. for Southern France?
I was toying with the idea of flying into Nice, heading towards Aix-en-Provence (train or car), enjoy the surrounding areas (cheese, wine, markets, etc..), and working the coastline back towards Nice to finish out with some beach time.

Anyone have any experience with a similar trip? I just started toying with the idea, but it sounds like it could be doable in 2020. Yes, I know Southern France is expensive.


BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5186 posts
 Online 

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Did something similar last summer.

Went into Nice and then rented a house in Gordes. Beautiful part of the world. Avignon is a great city and there are tons of other hilltop cities you can spend a day exploring and then move on to the next.

Word to the wise, this area of the world can require a lot of driving. And towns which are seemingly close can take longer to traverse between than one would think.

It is expensive but with all things depends on how you do it. A house can be rented for a good rate. Get one with a pool and spend those hot summer afternoons drinking rose, dozing off, and splashing about. View for purposes of convincing. Image: https://img.fae.ro/c98bcf.jpeg

Image: https://img.fae.ro/b5b3dd.jpeg

This post was edited on 5/11 at 1:29 pm


ChEgrad
LSU Fan
Member since Nov 2012
1652 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Admittedly, I don’t know much about Nice. Tried to go once when, unbeknownst to me and my coworkers, it was carnival. Could not find a spot to even park the car. It was a madhouse. The second time I was with my family and just spent and hour or two. Car was broken into. Not a fan of Nice.

I prefer the smaller towns. Gordes is a beautifully situated town and the abbey de Senanque is beautiful when the lavender is blooming. Avignon, Aix, Arles, the Roman theater in Orange, Fontaine de Vaucluse, the calanques, Les Baux, Pont du Gard, Route des Crete, are all places worth visiting. I would fly into Marseille as it is more central to the places I would like to visit than Nice.


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kciDAtaE
Member since Apr 2017
5380 posts
 Online 

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Never been but I just saw a special for RT direct flights from NYC to French Riviera for $1200 each. If that interests you I can search my feed to find it

ETA...Never mind. I missed that your trip was 2020. This was a special for this year
This post was edited on 5/11 at 7:47 pm


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Good ideas. We will have a two year old. Might see about flying into Marseille, spend the night and maybe spend the following day there.

From there head to Aix en Provence, rent a setup like you mentioned (view, pool, etc..) and do a day trip to Avignon and Gordes. I just realized how close Avignon was to CdP and Tavel. I'd really like to dive off into some wineries there, but that might be a tall order with a two year old. I know there is plenty to do in Provence alone with its wineries, lavender fields, etc..

After 4-5 days head to Nice and relax on the beach for the next 4-5 days w/ a possible day trip somewhere. Then fly out of Marseille.


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BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5186 posts
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re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
I’ll add a word about the markets of Provence. They get a lot of press but they are sort of crappy in actuality. Yes there is some pretty produce but most of it is just stuff bought via a wholesaler and displayed prettily. Cool to experience one market but don’t necessarily build your trip around it. It’s the same ceramic bowl of olives that just moves from small town to small town everyday.


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Good to know. I'm gonna put some pen to paper and try to start penciling an itinerary together. I've got a shitload of time.


dLSUm22
LSU Fan
Shreveport
Member since Aug 2012
316 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
I’m going to follow this thread as we are currently in the process of planning a trip to French Riviera this time next year.


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tylerlsu2008
LSU Fan
Member since Jul 2015
305 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
I spent some time out there in 2015. Almost this exact time of year -- weather was great. Stayed in Nice and visited the surrounding area Monaco, Cannes, Eze, etc. Pretty popular time as Cannes festival is usually around now and Grand Prix of Monaco is coming up.

That said, I would not recommend going for the beaches. They a very rocky in Nice and surrounding area, with occasional pockets of sandy areas. Still beautiful, but not soft sandy beaches.

Regarding price, I honestly don't remember being that bad, but i'm comping this against other places i've traveled such as Switzerland / Nordic countries which are much more expensive.


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Yeah, we've done beaches in Costa Brava, Amalfi Coast, Capri, etc.. The rocks don't bother me. We go to 30A enough to get sugary sand.

I like the other tips!


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kjntgr
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2004
7465 posts
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re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
I’m actually looking for a way to spend 4 days next month

Leaving nice on a Monday

The idea of having a pool is cool but I’m concerned with having to drive to a nearby town for dinner and having a few drinks


BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5186 posts
 Online 

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Its a good thing to be concerned about. The houses we looked to rent tended to be clustered near the towns so one could walk into town in the morning, for lunch or at night in 5 minutes or so.

These are mostly sleepy towns (the hill towns of the Luberon, etc...) without a lot of activity or nightlife. If looking for that would recommend staying in Aix or Avignon


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Holy shit! I just saw your pictures for some reason. WOW!

I've got some ballpark numbers down already and the trip is looking to be +/- $8,000 for the three of us. That's before we do any tours/day trips. The price of flights could also skyrocket in the summer; which might put this out of reach. We'll see. I usually have about a $10k max for EURO trips and this was only for 10'ish days


Jesus Magillicutty
Member since Apr 2019
78 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
If you are a history buff, there are some great sites.

Nimes, Arles and Avignon.

The Point du Gard aqueduct is neat. At one time you could walk across the top but I don't know if you still can.

Image: https://www.camping-les-plans.fr/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/caravaning-pont-du-gard.jpg


Ancient sites in Provence

This post was edited on 5/14 at 10:22 am


BlackenedOut
The Big Sleazy
Member since Feb 2011
5186 posts
 Online 

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Long itinerary short, found a solid mileage award into Venice. Spent a few days in Venice and then flew into Nice on Easy Jet or the like. But IIRC Air France flies direct to Nice from JFK.

You might also have your money go further in Southwest France, the Dordogne, Languedoc, etc...Also recall it is an easy train ride from Paris. Lots of ways to get to that area of the world while not crushing budget.


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
quote:

You might also have your money go further in Southwest France, the Dordogne, Languedoc, etc...Also recall it is an easy train ride from Paris. Lots of ways to get to that area of the world while not crushing budget.



Yeah, I actually put together some alternates that involved flights to paris and then a TGV. I just don't know if my then two year old will be cool or a total shite. At that point, time & convenience could be worth the extra money.


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Bear-O-Dactyl
Arkansas State Fan
tRock
Member since Oct 2012
1160 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
quote:

If you are a history buff, there are some great sites. Nimes, Arles and Avignon.


I was in Avignon and Nimes less than a week ago. Highly recommend both. I expected to like Nimes, but it really blew me away. I'll be posting a trip review on those soon, so there will be a ton of pictures coming.


kjntgr
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2004
7465 posts
 Online 

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
Thanks for the tips

I’m leaving nice on a Monday and don’t have to be in Paris until Friday

Good thing about that area is you can’t really make a bad decision

Every thing looks amazing and fun!


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hungryone
LSU Fan
river parishes
Member since Sep 2010
10024 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
quote:

've got some ballpark numbers down already and the trip is looking to be +/- $8,000 for the three of us. That's before we do any tours/day trips. The price of flights could also skyrocket in the summer; which might put this out of reach. We'll see. I usually have about a $10k max for EURO trips and this was only for 10'ish days

Good grief, what sort of lodgings are you booking? Skip the deluxe housing--even in Provence, there are a zillion little gites (holiday rentals), many at properties with pools and at least kitchenettes, at reasonable rates.
ETA: I just looked at AirBnB, and Aix area whole apartments with pool are renting in July from $80 per night. You can enjoy a place tremendously without having 400 thread count sheets, or a butler, LOL. Here's an example that rents for $950/week: LINK

Car rental shouldn't be very much by the week....

But, yes, BO is right: your $$ will stretch farther in the Dordogne. And, the food is superb--foie gras & truffles. Look around Sarlat, or Les Eyzies. You can go canoeing in the Vezere River, visit prehistoric caves, etc.
This post was edited on 5/14 at 10:58 am


TheWiz
LSU Fan
Third World, LA
Member since Aug 2007
10202 posts

re: Any travel recs. for Southern France?
quote:

Good grief, what sort of lodgings are you booking? Skip the deluxe housing--even in Provence, there are a zillion little gites (holiday rentals), many at properties with pools and at least kitchenettes, at reasonable rates.
ETA: I just looked at AirBnB, and Aix area whole apartments with pool are renting in July from $80 per night. You can enjoy a place tremendously without having 400 thread count sheets, or a butler, LOL. Here's an example that rents for $950/week: LINK


I was searching two bed, one bdrm, one bathroom, w/ pool, washer/dryer, and wifi. It kept saying that the average nightly stay was $334. That had me zoomed in fairly close to the city center.

Flights look to be about $4,000. Furthest I can search is late April/Early May.

Car would be about $500

Provence Air BnB is anywhere from $740 - $1,460 depending on swankiness. I prefer to be city centric so I can get a buzz on at dinner and walk. If I need to dump the pool, we will live.

Nice Hotel would be $1,500'ish or an Air BnB would be $900-$1,400 depending on proximity to the sea.

I guestimated food at $1300. Breakfast at Air BnBs. $30/day for lunch. $100/day for dinners. This could be on the low end.

Add petrol and a few tours and we should still be under that $10k mark.
This post was edited on 5/14 at 11:14 am


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