I’ll spend the next month scooting across the south of France: Where should I go?

Hello everyone,

This honeymoon scooter trip has got us as far as Bordeaux and we’ve done around 2,000 kilometres over the five weeks since we left Paris.

We’ve had one scooter breakdown, one ‘wolf’ attack, and one serious case of Lyme disease. But we’ve also experienced astonishing acts of kindness, incredible scenery, and unforgettable villages, towns and cities.

And now it’s time to explore the southern part of France.

Here’s a rough map of where I think we will go, but it’s open to change if you can convince me to go somewhere.

So, take a look, have a think, and put a comment below as to where we should go. The intended stops are already marked on the map – but the rest is the great unknown. Here’s a link to this exact map if you want to scroll around a bit. Time frame: Will arrive in Toulouse on September 22nd and continue eastwards.

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You can click the image to enlarge it, but the main stop ideas are Toulouse, Carcassonne, Montpellier, Avignon, Aix en Provence, Cassis, and Nice. The map also suggests it’s a 10-hour drive and 886 km (or 550 miles) – but I can assure you that on our scooter, taking the small roads, it will be more like 1,500 km and one month of driving.

Which is fine 🙂

But, if you can recommend a small town along the route, or something to see that I may not have considered, or an experience that’s absolutely worth doing… then now is the time to get in touch.

Also, if you think you’d make a good podcast guest because you’re doing something interesting in your corner of southern France, let’s meet!

And, if you have a place we can stay then you are a guardian angel and the gesture would be appreciated more than you could imagine.

Lastly, thanks to all those who’ve already been part of this journey – in whichever form.

Talk soon!



10 thoughts on “I’ll spend the next month scooting across the south of France: Where should I go?

  1. Ive already told you about lovely Antibes with its original Greek walls that you can drive around and the Provencal market there with the world’s most dangerous Socca oven, ( Socca is delicious, but a morning thing) but as I said, you must drive the Grand Corniche on your scooter towards Monte Carlo. Staggeringly beautiful.

  2. After Avignon, go to the Luberon! You will get a real feel of what Provence is! Go to l’Abbaye de Sénanque, Gordes, Bonnieux, Lourmarin, Cucuron (potential for great puns there)!

  3. Uzes is a wonderful small town. Stayed there a year ago for 2 weeks and enjoyed walking around — small, quaint — great market there. While there we drove to Pont du Gard, fascinating to see what the Romans could do back then. Spend an afternoon wandering the streets of St.Quentin, well-known for all its potters. We went twice to this special pottery place and hauled home lots of their chickens and would go back in an instant: http://www.ceramique-de-lussan.fr/historique/Enjoy your trip! I’m going back to France in November — fly to Paris, drive to Amboise, then Mt.St.Michael (again), Bayeux, Rouen, Honfleur, then back to Paris — love France and all its nooks and crannies. Have a wonderful time meandering around!

  4. Auvillar, Tarn-et-Garonne
    Small, ancient, fortified village at the banks of the Garonne with an interesting history, pretty place for lunch. It used to be a center for goose-feather pens for calligraphy – not too surprising, this is heavy-duty goose country! Nearby, of course, is the Golftech Nuclear Power Plant, always worthy a podcast.

    Cordes-sur-Ciel, Tarn [Too far N, I know 😢]
    Built in 1222 by Raimon VII Count de Toulouse to shelter prosecuted Cathars toward the end of the Albigensian Crusade, hence it’s one of the first Bastide towns. As you approach the town on a hill [hopefully with fog in the valley surrounding it] it looks a bit like Mt-St-Michel.

    Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val, Tarn-et-Garonne [Even further N 😜]
    It sits in an Aveyron River gorges in the Rouergue at the very edge of the Quercy region. It’s a fantastically rough region dripping with history of conflict and warfare between the French Royal House & the Pope, and, well, everybody else. In a modern day twist, St.-A-N-Val is one of only eight France communities that are members of the “Cittaslow” movement.

    Approaching Carcassonne, no doubt, you would want to taste the world’s best Cassoulet, right? You’ll find it at the restaurant of the
    Hostellerie Etienne
    1 Chemin Saint-Jammes
    11320 Labastide d’Anjou, Aude
    The village is just to the W of Castelnaudary, world capital of cassoulet. The late Etienne Rousselot developed the recipe [I use as a template for my own cassoulets]. The place is still family owned and the kids are very sweet. Do eat there, it’s a treat, but do NOT stay overnight. The rooms are extremely basic, to be kind. But this is Canal du Midi country, so there are many other options. We stayed in Castelnaudary, at the Hôtel du Centre et du Lauragais, 31 Cours de la République. In their restaurant we had the best Rognons de Veau we’ve ever eaten!
    And speaking of Carcassonne, will you get there in time to see the Felice Varini installation? I’d be interested in your opinion of it. The neon circles will be removed at the end of September, I believe.

    Along the coast:
    Agde, Hérault, beginning of Canal de Midi, largest European Nudist colony.
    Marseillan, Hérault, pretty, little harbour on the Étang de Thau, good seafood, Noilly Prat is made there.
    Sète, Hérault, old, big harbour between the étang & the sea
    La Grand Motte, Hérault, crazy vacation development of the 60ties
    Aigues Mortes, Gard, crazy fortification of belligerent kings
    Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, Bouches-du-Rhône, ancient-into-modern-day religious festival town: Oct. 20/21 (?) Pèlerinage d’October; Nov. 11 Festival d’Abrivado with 1000 Camargue horse, taureaux, and a few people.
    In the Cevennes:
    Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert, Hérault, tiny pilgrimage village and a Plus Beaux Villages de France designation
    Les Couvertoirade, Aveyron, truly, truly unique Knights Templar fortification

    Ok, ok, I shut up already. You asked for it, right? 🍷 Happy trails!

  5. Go to lovely Cassis and experience beautiful rocks of les Calanques (great climbing) or maybe some football with Michel Platini 😀

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