2 Questions: We are heading from Beaune toward Avignon and would like to stay 2 nights somewhere in between. Lyon comes to mind, but would take other suggestions. Also, we plan on spending 2-3 nights in the Avignon "area" to visit Pont du Gard, Les Baux, and others. We found a great place in Les Baux. Can we use that as a base, or should we stay in Avignon. We will have children (good travelers, ages 5-10) Thanks so much, David.
You don't say if you'll have a car. In that area, that's important info.
Lyon, obviously, if you're comfortable with a larger city. If you have a car, why not range out to the Luberon and stay there for a couple of nights and then use your time in Avignon to go the other direction (Pont du Gard, Arles, etc.)
Lyon is a great walking city with fun markets, excellent restaurants, a great Gallo-Roman museum and lots of areas to explore (La Croix-Rousse, for example.)
I'd stay near Place Bellecour as it's centrally located and not too far from the Perrache train station. Check out Hotel la Residence or Hotel des Celestins.
Enjoy your trip!
I highly recommend Vaison la Romaine which is north of Avignon - roman ruins, medieval town, great Tuesday market. I wouldn't stay in Avignon if you have a car as driving is a mess. Les Baux would work or you could consider St Remy or Uzes, both wonderful towns that are easier to navigate with a car.