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Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

Marietta, Georgia
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Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

My wife and I (each over 59) have purchased our flight to France for a week in late April, 2019 and I want to do some preliminary planning. We're in good walking shape, she's never been to Europe and I've only been to England a few times. Paris is a place she's always wanted to go to and I need some help as I know very little about the country. We do not speak French.

We want to see as much of the country as possible in that short amount of time. We arrive early on a Sunday morning in Paris and want to see some typical tourist attractions there at the beginning or end of the week and venture to other parts of France.

We love cultural events or places and a few people have mentioned southern France & Corsica if time and transportation permits. Perhaps also see the Omaha Beach area.

We will likely rent an auto and / or ride the SNCF train system to other parts of the country. I want to make the most of our time in France so are what we are hoping to see too much in 6-7 days?

Thanks, Dave

5 replies to this topic
Toowoomba, Australia
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1. Re: Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

Yes, you are trying to see too much. With that amount of time you can only visit Paris and one other place . I would just stay in Paris and perhaps do a day trip to see a chateau eg Vaux Le Vocomte, Fontainebleau, or Versailles or perhaps a day to Giverny to see Monet's gardens. If you do visit another area , perhaps Normandy where you could visit the D day beaches and Mont st Michel . You could spend four nights in Paris and three in Bayeux for example.

A lot of people suggest travelling to the other destination on arrival in France and then spending the last bit in Paris. If you choose Normandy , a car would be good . You could take the TGV to Avignon and visit Western Provence for three nights, perhaps staying in a smaller centre.Once again a car would be better here. If you choose to go on to the Côte d'Azur, you could stay in Nice or Antibes for example. For that length, you could use public transport.

You cannot see ' as much of France as possible ' in 6 - 7 days. You can only touch the surface of two at the most areas. We have spent forty six weeks in France since 2006 and are returning in three weeks. France is a country that is best savoured slowly.

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

If I were there with so little time I would base in Paris and then plan 2 or 3 day trips to smaller towns or chateaux in the area. There are literally dozens of wonderful day trips within an hour of Paris on the train. You can see a lot of variety without trying to cover hundreds of kilometers without enough time to really experience much of anything. You can see some examples in my photo journal under 'day trips from Paris.' With so little time, you want to reduce the time wasted on travel logistics.

Some examples. Reims and Rouen two cities near Paris with quite different attractions -- Champagne houses for the former and a great Cathedral and quite different architecture for the latter. Auvers su Oise is a nice small town where Van Gogh lived his last days and died. There are wonderful chateaux like Vaux le Vicomte or Fontainebleau or Chantilly. There are smaller picturesque towns. Crecy la Chapelle and its canals and wash houses; Moret su Loing and a lovely walk along the Loing to the Seine; Senlis a lovely medieval town. Of course, Chartres and its great stained glass and Giverny and Monet's garden and home. Malmaison the small chateau where Josephine lived after she left Napoleon.

If you feel you must go to another region, I'd do that on arrival for 3 nights and then return to Paris so you don't have to rush back the day before your flight and essentially waste one of your precious days. You could train to Bayeux and do a tour of the beaches, see the Bayeux tapestry and maybe do a day trip by van to Mont St. Michel. Or you could head for Strasbourg which is manageable as a quick trip. France is a huge country. You can't 'cover it' in a week, but you could have a fabulous week in Paris with a side trip or two to vary the experience.

janettravels44

www.janettravels.wordpress.com

Toowoomba, Australia
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3. Re: Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

Good ideas from Janet. We have never done day trips from Paris as we spend our time in the countryside . Day trips from Paris are for the future when we no longer drive!

Marietta, Georgia
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4. Re: Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

Thanks very much phirhon, Janettravels44 & phirhon for setting me straight, providing links and giving me plenty of info in time to plan before we leave. I have a LOT of research to do as I don't even know much about the French regions yet. I'll scale down our plans for seeing so much of France.

Thanks, Dave

Marietta, Georgia
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5. Re: Paris & Other Parts of France For A Couple in April, 2019

I know that we want to travel to another region on the train system that I've heard so much about so I've got to decide where that is.

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