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accommodation planning on-the-fly in Netherlands to Provence, France



 
 
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  #1  
Old March 29th 06, 08:01 PM posted to rec.bicycles.rides
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Default accommodation planning on-the-fly in Netherlands to Provence, France

I am planning a multi-week, Netherlands to Provence bike trip in May
(or maybe the other way around to give the weather a chance to catch
up.)

I am getting some excellent suggestions on equipment in another post
but now I turn my head towards sleeping arrangements. How best to
manage 3-4 weeks of probably on-the-fly sleeping.

Camping is out; rather hostels, gite d'etapes and cheap hotels are
planned. But I do not expect to have the route so tightly planned that
I can know where I will be everyday or night (so as to pre-book
accommodation).

I can imagine myself either at 8am starting to think "where should I
head to today" or at about 3pm wondering "where might I expect to wind
up today" and not have a place to stay figured out yet.

Does anyone have any tips on how best to plan accommodation on the fly
like this, between 3 hours and 3 days in advance? I cannot seem to find
a really good website with a map that I could use to look a day or two
ahead as I was pedaling. I am remiinded of the Forumle1 chaiin of
hotels which do seem to be almost everywhere in case of emergency. (but
30+ euros a night, while cheap, would start to add up.)

any tips?

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  #2  
Old March 30th 06, 02:19 AM posted to rec.bicycles.rides
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Default accommodation planning on-the-fly in Netherlands to Provence, France



"pstock" wrote ...
I am planning a multi-week, Netherlands to Provence bike trip in May
(or maybe the other way around to give the weather a chance to catch
up.)


I recall France getting extremely hot (well, Burgundy, Alsace and the
Pyrenees did) as the summer wore on, I would not want to be heading south in
May on a tour of France. Provence to Netherlands would let you stay ahead of
the heat in France, as well as giving the weather in the Netherlands time to
improve.


I am getting some excellent suggestions on equipment in another post
but now I turn my head towards sleeping arrangements. How best to
manage 3-4 weeks of probably on-the-fly sleeping.

Camping is out; rather hostels, gite d'etapes and cheap hotels are
planned. But I do not expect to have the route so tightly planned that
I can know where I will be everyday or night (so as to pre-book
accommodation).

I can imagine myself either at 8am starting to think "where should I
head to today" or at about 3pm wondering "where might I expect to wind
up today" and not have a place to stay figured out yet.

Does anyone have any tips on how best to plan accommodation on the fly
like this, between 3 hours and 3 days in advance? I cannot seem to find
a really good website with a map that I could use to look a day or two
ahead as I was pedaling. I am remiinded of the Forumle1 chaiin of
hotels which do seem to be almost everywhere in case of emergency. (but
30+ euros a night, while cheap, would start to add up.)


Maybe this will help: http://www.hostels.com/en/index.html .

I recall the Lonely Planet guide "Cycling France" listing hostels and gites
d'etape for it's routes, presumably the country guide would have a more
complete listing for the entire country.

Many official (FUAJ/HI affiliated) French youth hostels are actually "Foyers
des Jeunes Travailleurs" (residence halls for young working people, and I
apologize for any misspellings), they tend to be rather drab and sterile.

I found gites d'etape to offer a wide range of standards of cleanliness and
repair, but at least they were cheap. Multiple stickers of approval from
"Guide Routard" from consecutive years (including the current year) means
you're probably all right, anything less is a warning. Most, if not all,
gites d'etape expect you to bring your own bed linen (or they did when I was
there in 2001), a silk sleeping bag liner is a great way to go.

I hope my description of gites and hostels doesn't put you off too much, the
ones in the countryside were truly charming places to stay.

I used the Lonely Planet guidebook and a phone card to plan accommodation on
the fly in France, it worked very nicely.

HTH,
--
mark





  #3  
Old March 30th 06, 03:28 AM posted to rec.bicycles.rides
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Default accommodation planning on-the-fly in Netherlands to Provence, France

I have never had any (real) trouble finding a place to sleep while
touring through anywhere in Europe the way you are planning. The towns
are close enough together that if the hotel is full (or there is no
hotel), 10-20 miles down the road there probably will be. I think
finding something for $30 or less might be hard though. It seems that
each town has someone that will take you in like a bed & breakfast, if
you ask around. I learned in Italy that asking the town police was a
good idea for finding these people who rent rooms now and then.

It's really the most fun way to go.

-Gary
  #4  
Old March 30th 06, 04:36 AM posted to rec.bicycles.rides
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Posts: n/a
Default accommodation planning on-the-fly in Netherlands to Provence, France

I wouldn't worry about accommodations. Just break out the map, plot
your course and go. There are a ton of places to stay at based on the
areas you've mentioned. If you were going to travel through remote
mountain passes then it would be a different matter.

  #5  
Old April 2nd 06, 08:34 AM posted to rec.bicycles.rides
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Posts: n/a
Default accommodation planning on-the-fly in Netherlands to Provence, France

I recall France getting extremely hot (well, Burgundy, Alsace and the
Pyrenees did) as the summer wore on, I would not want to be heading south
in May on a tour of France. Provence to Netherlands would let you stay
ahead of the heat in France, as well as giving the weather in the
Netherlands time to improve.


Weather in May will likely not be that, but the south could be quite windy.
The heat kicks in a bit later, and even then it doesn't seem as oppressive,
when cycling, as you might think. All my cycling in France has been in July,
and it doesn't get a whole lot hotter than that.

--Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles
www.ChainReactionBicycles.com


"mark" wrote in message
ink.net...


"pstock" wrote ...
I am planning a multi-week, Netherlands to Provence bike trip in May
(or maybe the other way around to give the weather a chance to catch
up.)


I recall France getting extremely hot (well, Burgundy, Alsace and the
Pyrenees did) as the summer wore on, I would not want to be heading south
in May on a tour of France. Provence to Netherlands would let you stay
ahead of the heat in France, as well as giving the weather in the
Netherlands time to improve.


I am getting some excellent suggestions on equipment in another post
but now I turn my head towards sleeping arrangements. How best to
manage 3-4 weeks of probably on-the-fly sleeping.

Camping is out; rather hostels, gite d'etapes and cheap hotels are
planned. But I do not expect to have the route so tightly planned that
I can know where I will be everyday or night (so as to pre-book
accommodation).

I can imagine myself either at 8am starting to think "where should I
head to today" or at about 3pm wondering "where might I expect to wind
up today" and not have a place to stay figured out yet.

Does anyone have any tips on how best to plan accommodation on the fly
like this, between 3 hours and 3 days in advance? I cannot seem to find
a really good website with a map that I could use to look a day or two
ahead as I was pedaling. I am remiinded of the Forumle1 chaiin of
hotels which do seem to be almost everywhere in case of emergency. (but
30+ euros a night, while cheap, would start to add up.)


Maybe this will help: http://www.hostels.com/en/index.html .

I recall the Lonely Planet guide "Cycling France" listing hostels and
gites d'etape for it's routes, presumably the country guide would have a
more complete listing for the entire country.

Many official (FUAJ/HI affiliated) French youth hostels are actually
"Foyers des Jeunes Travailleurs" (residence halls for young working
people, and I apologize for any misspellings), they tend to be rather drab
and sterile.

I found gites d'etape to offer a wide range of standards of cleanliness
and repair, but at least they were cheap. Multiple stickers of approval
from "Guide Routard" from consecutive years (including the current year)
means you're probably all right, anything less is a warning. Most, if not
all, gites d'etape expect you to bring your own bed linen (or they did
when I was there in 2001), a silk sleeping bag liner is a great way to go.

I hope my description of gites and hostels doesn't put you off too much,
the ones in the countryside were truly charming places to stay.

I used the Lonely Planet guidebook and a phone card to plan accommodation
on the fly in France, it worked very nicely.

HTH,
--
mark








 




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