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General Plan for France 2023

Hi all,
I'm planning a first time trip to France last 2 weeks of June 2023. A total of 15 nights on the ground. My husband and I are interested in going to Paris, Burgundy region, French Alps and French Riviera. This is my thinking so far: 5 nights in Paris, train to Beaune for 3 nights, car to Chamonix for 3 nights. Looking for suggestions on how to transport to Nice and then best way to get from Nice back to Paris. I'm hoping to get direct flights to and from Boston to Paris. Or suggestions on a different route, incorporating the above areas.
Thank you.

Posted by
1213 posts

Maybe get your major travel out of the way first. Fly into CDG w/a connection to Nice, then work your way back up to Paris while hitting the towns you wish to see. That way it's less of a hassle with flying out of CDG instead of working your way back up to Paris with a connection on your departure day.

Enjoy your trip.

Posted by
10998 posts

Yes, I agree with Tim. Fly Boston to Nice then work your way back to Paris. Flying thru CDG in Paris, I recommend giving yourselves 3 hours transit time. Be sure to book this all on one ticket so you are covered for your whole trip in case of delays.

Posted by
5666 posts

I agree with the above, fly to Paris, then Nice, then work your way north. Besides getting your longest travel day out of the way first, it also puts you in the warmer south earlier in June. If you prefer to work your way south, then take a fast train from Nice back to Paris the day before your homebound flight, and spend that final night either in Paris or in an airport hotel, depending on departure time.

Dijon might be a better pickup or dropoff point for the car than Beaune because it's a bigger city, presumably with more car rental options. It has direct rail service to Paris. Beaune is on a different line, about 20 minutes as I recall, so easy enough to get to or from Dijon. But the car will help with sightseeing in Burgundy, other than Beaune. (Dijon also has a good art museum and other sights.)

Posted by
15327 posts

Beaune and Dijon are big cities. I spent several days in Burgundy with a car and loved visiting the small villages, chateaux and abbeys. I like the idea of flying into Nice, spend 3N and visit one or two other towns by train. Then rent a car and drive to Chamonix (2N is probably enough unless you want to hike), then make your way through Burgundy for 5N - I would prefer to base in one small town and day trip, others like one-nighters and a little less driving. End in Dijon and take a train to Paris. You could take 1N from Burgundy to add to Nice

Posted by
190 posts

Yes I like this plan to Fly into Nice and work out way North to Paris. Seems like a nice assortment of flight options.

Posted by
3 posts

Hi Carolyn,

Replying from The Netherlands. We’ve travelled all over France. I would suggest two changes.
Chamonix is nice, but given the choice I would go to Annecy. It’s a bit easier to travel to, and has more to offer.
Besides this I feel that Nice, and the other cities on the Cote d’Azur are tourist traps. The Provence gives you more of a ‘classic’ French feel. It’s also crowded, but St Rémy de Provence, Baux de Provence, Arles, Uzés etc are really great.

I think you can fly back from Lyon (also a great place to visit - culinary capital of France ….).

Enjoy your trip!

Han

Posted by
3924 posts

Your trip sounds wonderful! Here are some options using BOS > CDG > NCE.

Nice- Turin-Chamonix by car 5H58m. Or…

Easyjet Flight Nice to Geneva 1 hour.
Pick up car, drive to Chamonix 1 Hour.

This requires a 1 1/2 hour preflight arrival at gate in Nice. Total time 3H30m. Almost cuts travel time in half added to price of fuel it may be a win, win. Explore Chamonix.

Chamonix >(Stop at) Annecy ( 1H13m).
Annecy > Beaune (via Geneva) 2H50m.

Beaune >Dijon 40min. Drop car train to Paris Gare de Lyon. 1H 36m.

Have a great time.