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DRIVING TRIP TO France ( including Carcassone) and Spain?

(15 Posts)
fitnotfatinto50s Mon 23-May-16 17:13:32

Thinking of doing a road trip this summer. We would like to go to Carcasssone and perhaps cross over into Spain. Probably do Dover to Calais crossing as we have a wedding to attend near Dover prior to the holiday.

Has anybody done this. I am looking at mobile homes - and apartments/houses with private pools. Dont mind mixing it up.

Just wondering about good route - and any recommendations. Thanks

- oh there will be 5 of us - 2 adults (3 older teens)

fitnotfatinto50s Sat 28-May-16 09:11:07


Doesnt have to be experience of Carcassone - but any helpful ideas of interesting places to stop/stay on way through France would be great


chantilly70 Sun 29-May-16 10:58:38

It is more enjoyable doing the Brittany ferries routes but you may struggle to find availability now. You can get a better deal on the ferry if you book a package with accommodation either with Brittany ferries or another tour operator. The Portsmouth santander crossing is the most fun for teens but the Caen crossing is also a good place to start. En route to South west France we just stop in Novotel type places but you could stop at La Rochelle or Poitiers or in the Dordogne. We have travelled before with Pyrenees collection who got us a good deal on the ferry. If you look at their website they offer argeles, Biarritz and lots of places in the Pyrenees. We did a day trip yo Carcassone and loved it. I'm not sure if I'd stay a week there though. If you have two weeks you could do a week in the Pyrenees an a week by the coast and visit Carcassone between the two.

Drinksforeveryone Sun 29-May-16 21:58:32

We stayed in a villa near Carcassonne a few years ago. We used the tunnel tocross but did plan in two overnight breaks en route (as we have a 5 hour drive from home to Folkestone to star t with).

Iirc our stops were in Rouen and Limoges. Both nice cities to explore for an afternoon.

We didn't do that much in our week as it was SO hot. Our boys were younger so we're happy enough playing in the pool. We were only 10 mins from carcassonne so did visits few times. During the day and in the evening which is much quieter and easier to get a feel of it. We went to Narbonne plage one day too.

On our way home after one night in a small town (I can't remember the name )we had a two night stay in Paris. I had bookedan apartment with parking. It had an outdoor terrace area too. V nice.

Since then we've done more driving trips in France. Blois is well located for a stop over as is Vendome.

I try not to do too much travel in one day. It's tiring for the driver/s and boring for the passengers. It sounds like you have loads of time so just get on google maps and what is on your way.

Have fun planning!

mangocoveredlamb Sun 29-May-16 22:01:57

We usually drive down to Perpignan every summer.
We go Dover-Calais and then the route that is near Dijon and then through Lyon, because we want to avoid Paris!
Very doable in a couple of days and we have found nice places to stay in the Dijon area.

mangocoveredlamb Sun 29-May-16 22:04:42

We stayed in a hotel in Nuit San George, individual rooms each with access to the garden, and a swimming pool.
You can travel down the A9 to Spain and cross the border near Le Boulou. It's not far to Fugueres were Salvador Dali lived and there is a great museum there.

ivykaty44 Sun 29-May-16 22:07:17

Have stayed a couple of times near Perpignan - having driving down from Dover.

We went down the east side of France and camped

It would be pretty easy to get pop up tents and sleeping bags to camp on the odd nights travelling

We did it in a campervan

I would definitely go and see the pont de Gard and the town about ten miles to the west, name escapes me

We did lots of lake swimming and river swimming

Jubaloo442 Sun 29-May-16 22:09:21

We drove down to N Spain at Easter to visit a friend in Pamplona. Did overnight ferry to Caen from Portsmouth, and stopped overnight at La Rochelle, Bordeaux and San Sebastián. Would highly recommend San Sebastián, excellent food and good beaches for the little ones. La Rochelle also fab. The scenery in N Spain around the Pyrenees is beautiful. Would second advice about driving a reasonable amount. We took our ten year old nephew and tried to drive a max of 4 hours per day, it was plenty.

BeJayKayven Sun 29-May-16 22:21:30

We stayed in Carcassone for 3 night which in retrospect was 1 night too much. Sete at the seaside is a buzzy working fishing town with looong stretches of beach. Pezenas is a lovely medieval town with a great market and nice restaurants (I know there's loads of towns like that but it's really nice). It also has an organic soap factory and shop which I loved although the family were a bit meh 😀

If you like a bit of exploring there's a huge cave, Grotte de Clamouse, guided trips take 40 minutes, it's all lit up colours and music so very impressive (and deep and cold)

Verbena37 Tue 31-May-16 00:06:12

We drove down to Carcassonne and stayed in a gorgeous city centre apartment owned by an English couple. It overlooked the city rooftops and was situated at the bottom of the castle path so only a ten min walk up to the top. We had a really lovely time. We did the tunnel and stopped overnight at a reasonable hotel in the centre of Orleans. Then drove straight down the rest of the way the following day, which was fine.

We visited family in Perpignan for a day which was a fine drive and really pretty.

Boosiehs Tue 31-May-16 00:09:42

Loved Carcassone. Stayed in the city and two nights was plenty. Pezenas is lovely. Really happy childhood memories!

A must see in that region is Ague Morte. Beautiful walled city on the edge of the Camargue. Utterly lovely with great history and amazing restaurants. Highly recommended.

steppemum Tue 31-May-16 00:10:01

we often drive down to near Toulouse.

We do it on one day and then stay in a rented house with pool.
It is a loooong trip though, if we could we would split it over 2 days.

Verbena37 Tue 31-May-16 00:14:51

This is the appartment link.....
Appartment Ney, Carcassonne

Drinksforeveryone Wed 01-Jun-16 22:23:49

I like that apartment.

Ideal for me and DH now we have no DC to take on hol any longer smile

BeJayKayven Thu 02-Jun-16 18:12:28

This is where we stayed in Pezenas, it was gorgeous!

Our b&b in Carcassone is called Carcassone Guest House. It came with the top reviews on trip adviser, it had magical views but I wouldn't recommend it.

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