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Old 04-01-06, 03:18 PM   #1
DrPete 
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Self-guided tour packages in Provence--Any suggestions??

My fiancee and I are planning an October honeymoon in Provence and we're trying to decide on a tour company. A couple of them offer rides with full support, but looking at a website doesn't always tell you 100% how the experience really went.

Right now, Diverse Directions is leading the pack. Discover France also has some great packages. Does anyone have any experience with these companies? It's a honeymoon after all, so we need to do it up!

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Old 04-01-06, 03:37 PM   #2
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We spent a week in Provence. Near the town of Bonnieux. This area is so incredible. Mt. Ventoux is near. Lavender town of Sault is a favorite. Don't want to influence you to not go with a tour company if that is both your passion.
But, Provence is so awesome. Such a romantic area. Beautiful terrain. Nice resorts. Honeymoon? Difficult to admit there is another side to life other than biking. Even though my wife would not belive me saying that.
I just wondered if you consider the Romantic aspects of Provence, maybe cycling is just like no more than 50% of the reason to go to Provence. I'd certainly spend 50% of my time on the bike on a honeymoon. But, what about the other fifty percent of your honeymoon.
My honeymoon with my cyclist wife, I'd stay in a beautiful resort in some idyllic spot and ride half the time. Cycling is so popular there, you would not be cheated out of great cycling by just following your instincts and ask about for the best bike routes.
Provence. what a choice. Have a great honeymoon. If cycling is both your passion, then that is great too.
But on the other hand. I think I see the sights better from a saddle of my bike over other forms of transportation. Just that Provence is something really special. Sure would not want to get saddle sores on this particular vacation.
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Old 04-01-06, 04:26 PM   #3
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"a self guided tour package" what in the world is that? I have heard of guided tours with companies like adventure cycling... but wouldn't a self guided tour be a tour that is not guided by anybody other than yourself? am I missing something here????

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Old 04-01-06, 04:37 PM   #4
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Seems there are cycling tour companies that offer advice only, but other than that you are on your own. maybe that is it. In the area, I found just stopping in bike shops or Syndicate d' Initiative offices and you can get lots of information about where to ride. There are cycling guide books that give you adequate information to go out on your own.
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Old 04-01-06, 05:01 PM   #5
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It's a little more than advice, at least from these companies. They offer transportation to and from starting points, move your luggage from stop to stop, and provide mechanical support along the route. Several also include lodging at pre-selected hotels.

"Self-guided" doesn't mean you're on your own--it's their route, their support, and just no big group to deal with, so it's at your own pace.

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Old 04-02-06, 09:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrPete
It's a little more than advice, at least from these companies. They offer transportation to and from starting points, move your luggage from stop to stop, and provide mechanical support along the route. Several also include lodging at pre-selected hotels.

"Self-guided" doesn't mean you're on your own--it's their route, their support, and just no big group to deal with, so it's at your own pace.

DrPete

that sounds nice....
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Old 04-03-06, 03:41 AM   #7
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Sounds like a great way to spend a honeymoon
Might I throw a spanner in the works though and suggest the Dordogne region. Towns are closer together, lots to see and the duck is superb!
We cycled on our tandem through this region last year as well as the Languedoc, Haute Provence and Maritime Alpes. Depends on how long you have and how fit you are or your other half isn't.
We were self supported and had no problems with getting around, food etc. We were using the Lonely Planet Cycling France book which was very reliable with the information. We also had a Michelin Green guide for more info as well. Save the money on the tour company and spend it on the important things like food, wine and accomodation.

Cheers

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