My husband and I plan to spend 10 days in early Dec., doing various Christmas markets in other towns/villages/cities. I was hoping to incorporate a night in Honfleur, then go to Lille, Reims, Strasbourg,Colmar, and Eguisheim Flying in and out of CDG. Planned on renting a car and also do train where it makes sense. Any thoughts from this experienced group? Thanks.
Those towns are all over northern France. And since you only seem to plan to visit towns, you should probably ditch the car and use trains and buses.
In December 2019 we did a similar trip and based in Colmar. We were going to take the train from CDG to Colmar, then rent a car for day trips, and then catch the train back to Paris/CDG. Unfortunately, we got caught up in a transportation strike (had advance notice) so we had to drive the entire trip. It's about a 6 hour drive from CDG to Colmar vs. maybe 3 on the train. Soooooo, my advice is to research both your train and car options and have alternate plans in case you need them. Also, you may want to go in one direction rather than two (i.e. Honfleur, Lille, Reims or Reims and Alsace) to reduce the time you're traveling and increase the time you're enjoying.
Too soon to be sure if the Christmas market will operate this year. I would say that it is likely that they will take place if there are no new awful covid developments, but if access is extremely restricted, some cities will decide that it is not worth the effort. Otherwise I would say that Strasbourg has the best Christmas market, followed by Lille.
I made a report about Strasbourg a number of years ago: https://anyportinastorm.proboards.com/thread/7932/christkindelsm-rik-strasbourg-christmas-market?page=1
Honfleur is lovely but it's a day trip at best IMO, and not worth it to drive that far west for one village (even if you're a fan of Satie).
We are also planning to go at the same time as you, and the Christmas markets are a big draw, but if they don't end up happening, we have other plans that will make us equally happy. We're going to Paris, Colmar, Lyon and Chamonix but we have 4 more days and those places are significantly closer together than Honfleur, Lille, Reims and Alsace. You will be spending a lot of time in the car/train.
For 10 days (is that 10 nights, which is really closer to 8 days?), you should pick one or two general areas. Are you going to spend any time in Paris or just bolting to and from CDG?
We will have 11 nights and it’s sounding like I really need to come up with plan B. We planned to spend a couple of nights in Paris but we’ve spent several days in Paris on another trip so don’t want to concentrate our time there this trip. If the markets happen, we’ll skip Honfleur, start with Lille and move around to Alsace. The big question now will be “plan B”.
Thank you for all the great feedback!
If RS had not deleted my post, perhaps this thread would not have died.
As of 2 August:
Strasbourg showing 26 Nov start date for their Christmas Market
Colmar, 26 Nov - 29 Dec, https://www.noel-colmar.com/en/
Riquewihr, 27 Nov - 22 Dec, https://www.christmas.alsace/riquewihr-christmas-market/
Eguisheim, 26 Nov - 23 Dec, https://www.christmas.alsace/eguisheim-christmas-market/
I am planning to visit the Alsace Region & Paris at the end of November & beginning of December 2021. Just hoping things are a bit more stable by then. Will be booking train tickets at the end of August.
Thanks for posting the links! That is very exciting. Having actual dates posted gives me hope just when the current negativity was starting to make me doubt if it would happen this year.