We are a couple in our late fifties visiting France. After a week in Nice, we plan to move to St.-Remy for six days. The choice is to (a) rent a car in Nice (train station or airport?) and drive to St.-Remy, or (b) take a TGV from Nice-Ville to Avignon-TGV and rent at Avignon. We do want a car for day-trips around St.-Remy.
We will have a check-in bag, plus possibly two carry-on bags and a small backpack. Yes, we are aware of the benefits traveling light in Europe, and we have done that in all our previous trips. However, this time we have other constraints - attached business trips and split travel after France visit. Although we are well-traveled by trains in Europe (including France), in ok shape and can manage, taking big bags in trains is a bit inconvenient. A little challenging if the stations do not have escalators (do they?), and when there are split levels (does the first class have that as well?).
If we rent the car, we can stop in one or two places on the way. A couple of options are Cassis or Aix ( fitting both is likely not practical), or even a small pretty village on the way. We have never driven in Europe and not sure if driving within Aix or Cassis (mainly to find safe parking) will be difficult at this time of the year. Also a little concerned about leaving our luggage in the car. There may be an extra drop-off fee for a different location, but not a big concern for now.
Our next destination is Lyon, but only for three days, so we may just take the train or if we rent the car, just drop it off right away there.