Request for suggestions

Discussion in 'France' started by Coopit, Mar 15, 2015.

  1. Coopit

    Coopit Funster

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    We are off to France 08.30 on 27th March returning 14.00 on 13th April, our only preparation far is booking Eurotunnel, buying the new All The Aires, and a few maps. Other than Brittany, Normandy and one night in Arras on the way to Belgium; we have no experience of the rest of France. We have been told the Loire Valley is very interesting.

    We would welcome all suggestions and your experience of areas and places to visit. We would like to be on the move to see as much as possible, staying somewhere for 2/3 nights at the most and travelling up to 3 hours a day. We are not sure what sort of distance is practical in the time we have. A basic route would be ideal, but I'm getting the hang of not planning. Had the M/H since last September.

    Also what can we expect over the Easter weekend, in the way of how busy it gets.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. FIDGET

    FIDGET Funster

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    Hi Coopit,
    We loved the Loire, mostly used aires, if you need suggestions just ask.
    as too route we went via catillon sur sambre aire canal side-- Geraudot aire lakeside -- Ouzoeur sur Trezee aire ( not brill the aire but nice town/canal --Briare aire lovely canal side --Sully sur Loire aire next to brill Chateau -- Beaugency aire riverside (now closed) -- Amboise campsite on an island middle of Loire river there's also an aire right outside c/site -- Turquant aire lots of cave houses & vineyards -- Fresnay sur Sarthe c/site -- St Nicolas de Bliquetuit aire riverside Seine.
    hope this helps Terry
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2015
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  3. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    Well Coopit - how do you define 'interesting' ? - there's a strong possibility that your tastes won't match mine, being as we're all different! LOL

    Seriously - almost anywhere might be interesting or beautiful or quaint or boring and what I'd do in your shoes is actually pick an area - say the Loire ! and Google it - "Loire tourism" and you get sites like this one - http://www.loirevalleytourism.com/ - so click on the tab on there - "Discover" - and away you go.

    The other thing I do (it does drive Pete mad as he reckons I'm not happy unless I have a ton of paper in my hand) is pick up leaflets wherever we are. This started years and years ago when we motorbike toured and stayed at budget hotel chains (the BB chain has been top of the list) in whose reception area is always a massive rack with leaflets/brochures showing all the local attractions - which I'd get armfuls of, and peruse them at my leisure. Hey look - they have a chateau just up the road, a night market on Wednesdays by the marina, some fabulous looking huge caves, an interesting clock by the town hall - whatever!

    One year we'd been on the S West coast and were meandering back north very gently heading for a certain campsite we fancied when we saw loads of brown 'tourism' signposts to some caves and not being in any rush decided to visit. WOW !! A bit later on we were on an aire and parked next to a French couple who were sitting outside their van. Our door being opposite theirs (we had a Swift Bessacar then) we obviously spoke to them and got into a conversation - yes it was in French, they didn't speak English but were intelligent enough to realise our French wasn't brill so if we didn't 'get' something they said it again in a different way - Where had we been, where were we going? We said we'd been to the Grotte de Demoiselles and it had been fantastique - and they asked if we'd ever been to the Gouffre de Padirac ? - No, though we had seen signposts . Excuse me Monsieur - but what IS 'un gouffre' ? He explained - but his wife said hang on, dear! - it's been 30 years since we went - it might have changed! He asked her has it been that long? Yes! our so and so was only 3, she was in her pushchair - she's over 30 now! It's the longest French conversation I have ever had in my life, including my O Level in 1966.

    So funnily enough, the following year, we actually went along the Dordogne and visited all sorts of interesting places including Rocamadour and that gouffre. It is indeed - just as we were told - incroyable! un trou - enorme! You absolutely will NEVER have encountered anything like it and it's well worth a visit. That holiday we made caves our specialist subject for several weeks visiting quite a few but did loads of other stuff meanwhile and after. I'd certainly visit any of them again, but we haven't done all of them in France yet anyway.

    Pick a few aires you like the look and sound of in whatever region(s) you want - and then - Google it! shedloads of info about almost anywhere on the web.

    The only time we've been in France at Easter was a 3 week holiday a few years ago - went to Calais then along to Berck sur Mer, often our first stop in summer for a couple of days while we decide where we're going, this time. It was the hottest Easter ever, over 40 - the annual kite festival was on which is fantastic and well worth seeing - we stayed there for the whole holiday and went almost nowhere else! Wall to wall people, it was packed. The floodlit display and fireworks after at the end of the week were worth seeing on their own if nothing else. Who knew they even had that festival !!!
     
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  4. Taran_Las

    Taran_Las Funster

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    Loire valley - has to be a visit to Chambord. Blois is a nice city. The aire (tarmac) is in the centre of town with plenty to see without moving the van. A bus trip to Chambord from Blois centre is €2.00 each way(y)
     
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  5. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    There's a fantastic Sunday morning market along the river in Amboise!
     
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  6. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    That's worth knowing - thank you! We tried to go there the other year but couldn't find anywhere to stay that wasn't too far away.
     
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  7. FIDGET

    FIDGET Funster

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    As Sedge & Taran Las have said Chambord is extremely difficult to park all height barriers etc, having said that well worth a visit
     

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  8. scousebird

    scousebird Funster

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    You can park a MH at Chambord in one particular car park which is well signed and even stay overnight but it's very expensive I think
     
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  9. Rob and Val

    Rob and Val Funster

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  10. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    We tend to just head for an aire we fancy, and see what brown signs there are in the vicinity, or whatever else we happen across or see advertised. Some hypermarche type shopping malls have the racks of tourist info even if there isn't a tourist info shop in the town itself. I rather like that some aires have notice boards which tell you not only if/when the dosh should be collected or where to pay it, but also helpful things like market days or whatever it happens to be.
     
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  11. Coopit

    Coopit Funster

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    Thanks for the great responses. I have listed Terry's suggested route, linked to the aire's book. Great tips Sedge. I purchased Michelin's "Chateaux of the Loire" Chambord looks amazing.

    We used the Road Trip Europe book for our first MH trip abroad last Oct/Nov, it worked a treat; we did five countries and each day had something of interest. Ideal for first trip, it gave all the information needed; we did not stick to all the route.

    We would still welcome any other suggestions on route to and from Loire. This trip will be another learning curve, my concern was spending days without achieving much; but I think France will come up trumps.

    Thanks again for all the replies.
     
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  12. Coopit

    Coopit Funster

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    We are now on the outskirts of Tours, having stopped at some of the suggested Aire's. We will go west a bit before heading north and back for the Eurotunnel in ten days.

    If anyone has further suggestions and can get them to us in the next couple of days, that would be great. Will only have Internet for two days.
     
  13. FIDGET

    FIDGET Funster

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    Turquant aire nice or Saumar aires both close to Loire

    Nice Aire, west of Le Mans- south east of Laval -- Lakeside at Saint Denis du Maine Free
    6-10 Route de Meslay
    53170 Saint-Denis-du-Maine, France
    47.965334, -0.530462

    or Chateau Gontier riverside aire large car park--north of Angers-south of Laval Free
    11 Quai du Docteur Lefèvre
    53200 Château-Gontier, France
    47.825154, -0.701788

    Or north of Nantes Nort Sur Erdre nice riverside aire/park-gardens Free
    12 Rue des Orionnais
    44390 Nort-sur-Erdre, France
    47.437319, -1.495304
     
  14. Coopit

    Coopit Funster

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    Thanks once again Fidget. We have used a number of your and others suggestions, Catillon Sur Sambre, Briare, Amboise all good but our best so far Sully sur Loire. Also been to Chambord, just used it for day parking. We found a treat at Provins and used Reims to see the town.
     
  15. FIDGET

    FIDGET Funster

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    Glad to be of help Coopit, my suggestion of St nicolas de Bliquetuit is small riverside or a few miles down the road is La Mailleraye sur Seine, small charge 5 or 6 euros there but nice riverside aire to watch the boats shipping up & down the river, short walk to shops etc no more than 200 yards, gendarmerie is even closer , so very safe.
     
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