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Private Guide

Palm Desert...
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Private Guide

Two couples in mid September request a guide for this area---not all day tastings. also sights and cultural aspects of region.

Is it possible to find someone for around $400 per couple???

Reading, United...
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1. Re: Private Guide

Hire a car and do it yourself. A little research and your trip will be far more rewarding.

Paris, France
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2. Re: Private Guide

If you will hire a car (and I agree that is the best way to see the area) you can start your research on the regional tourist office website, which will outline a route of the champagne trail you can follow:

http://www.tourisme-champagne-ardenne.com/

There is an English language version of the website but it is not as complete as the French version. Also look at this website:

www.champagnediscovery.com

Palm Desert...
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285 posts
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3. Re: Private Guide

OK. You have convinced me. We will have a car. And I love to do research so unless someone comes along who is very reasonable in price---we will be guided by ME!

Thanks much.

Paris, France
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4. Re: Private Guide

Don't know where you'll be starting your journey but you can rent a car in Paris and drive to that region or take a train to Reims and pick your car up there. If you take the train you'll need to buy those tickets 3 months in advance for the cheapest prices. Use www.capitainetrain.com to check schedules and prices and buy tickets. Use www.autoeurope.com for car rental info. Use www.viamichelin.com for driving times and distances (the times don't consider stops) and get yourself a Michelin map of the region to help guide you. You want Michelin map #306 Aisne, Ardennes, Marne for the Champagne region. Here is my standard advice about using Michelin maps to explore France:

Get your hands on the Michelin maps. You want the ones of the scale 1:200,000 (regional maps) or 1:150,000 (departmental maps, more detailed, cover slightly less area) for whatever regions you visit. A nice feature of the 1:150,000 maps is they show the starred attractions in the corresponding Michelin Green guidebooks. The Michelin maps have icons for all kinds of historically/touristically interesting things such as châteaux, ruins, churches, abbeys, scenic view points, caves, Roman sites, megaliths, designated scenic roads and many other things. Usually when I'm exploring various regions in France I just look at the map and I am able to plan interesting and scenic drives just reading the map. For instance, I usually look for a designated scenic road, which are highlighted in green, and I especially look for towns with the historic church and/or château icon. With the departmental maps also look for towns/sites/attractions that have been give one or more Michelin stars. I also try to make sure the route goes through as many small villages as possible. Usually putting all these things together I find interesting and scenic drives without even knowing where I am going and with no assistance from a guide book. Often these places are never mentioned in guidebooks and remain completely unknown to many tourists.

You can buy the Michelin maps from their website and here is a link to the page that shows you the 1:200,000 scale maps of France (Regional maps): http://tinyurl.com/4bt96ev

And here is a link to the page that shows you the 1:150,000 scale maps of France (Départementale maps):

http://tinyurl.com/6mt4n64

You could also buy them here but then you can't do research beforehand. The maps can be bought in many places such as bookstores, news stands, magazine stores, larger supermarkets, department stores, hypermarkets and in the full service rest areas on the autoroutes, just to name a few. If you're going to be traveling all over France you may find it easier to buy the Michelin Atlas, which covers all of France.

Palm Desert...
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5. Re: Private Guide

I so appreciate your help. We have traveled through many regions in France and have use the maps. So we are comfortable with this.

Merci beaucoup.

Paris, France
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6. Re: Private Guide

Have fun. )

7. Re: Private Guide

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