My wife and I are planning to visit Europe for 10 days in late October (exclusive of travel days). We have been to Europe several times and are looking to see areas we have not visited before. We tend to prefer quickly moving through areas to see highlights and get a general "sense" of a locale. We have been to London and Paris multiple times so this trip is not about visiting those cities - though we will fly in/out depending on itinerary. Our likes include walking through villages and cities, walking tours, food/wine/other beverages, beautiful scenery/landscape, fine with driving and trains (including driving on left side), and enjoy limited shopping :)). We occasionally tour a museum or castle but will typically do so on a self-guided basis and only spend a couple hours at most. No need to see any rock formations in either country :).
Our 2 ideas are visiting parts of the UK and France. Trip A would involve arriving in Edinburgh and departing London (or reverse). We would spend a couple days in Edinburgh, a couple days in Highlands (maybe a distillery tour), a couple days in Cotswolds and time in Kent to visit some sparkling wine producers. We have never been to Scotland or outside of London (except for Windsor). Obviously, tons to see in those areas and we would just be skimming the surface focused on what appeals to us.
Trip B arrive in Paris and immediately head to Normandy. Thinking of checking out some of the touristy spots (Honfleur, MSM is a must) and would like to see other towns and perhaps a stop for cider and cheese production. Onto Brittany, to visit St. Malo and Dinan - other ideas welcome but likely will not venture too far West (despite what we will miss) due to time constraints. Finish with a day or two in Loire Valley - probably tour only 1-2 chateaux max. I recognize we can't see it all and that is OK. And I will repeat we enjoy driving through the countryside and towns.
I would like to hear from people who have traveled to either or both of these areas (even better if you visited during late October). I hope to avoid the train/car discussions. Also, I am aware that it would be easier to respond if I focused on one trip. We are torn between the two and thought maybe getting perspectives from others who have experience in these locations may help us make our final decision. Thanks!