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Gascony itinerary suggestions?

Like the guest on Program 544, the Gascogne diet, and the Basque cuisine as well, really rings my bell.
I realize now that one of my favorite spots all the way over in Nice, recommended in earlier RS guidebooks,
is L'Ovale, which celebrates the dishes of the southwest like those discussed in this episode of the radio show.

What would be a suggested itinerary for a week or so, maybe more, in Gascony and French Basque territory for someone
with a strong stomach and without a car?
Where would one fly into and out of?

I have also mentioned elsewhere in the forum my enjoyment of floc,
which is mentioned briefly in this radio segment but passed over by RS.

Posted by
15211 posts

I haven't listened to the radio topic but I did drive through the region one day last month, stopping briefly in Montreal, partly inspired by the NYT article that's linked at https://www.ricksteves.com/watch-read-listen/audio/radio. (They were having a Sunday lunch/craft sale fundraiser on the main square.) I would have stayed longer and also visited at least Lectoure, but Mom was impatient. From the road, we did not see a single duck or duck farm, but I know they're there. What we did see was A LOT of corn fields.

There's not much train service in that area. You can get to Auch or to Mont-de-Marsan by train, but each is at the end of their own spur line, from opposite directions. The Eurail map shows a couple of SNCF/Ouibus connections from Mont-de-Marsan. For instance, a schedule search between those two towns results in a few departures per day, with connections at different cities. Trains from Bordeaux to Toulouse stop in Agen and other towns along that direct line.

The Basque region around St. Jean-de-Luz, Bayonne, and Biarritz are easier to visit by train and also the Dordogne around Sarlat has much more developed services for travelers.