Experiencing France

A quick hello from Paris. Today was my last day in this wonderful city. I’ll be making my way home to the States tomorrow, and will be back in the office on Wednesday (well, at least my body will be; my soul may still be here in France!) Make sure to check back on the blog for photos of the trip later this week.

The purpose of this familiarization or “fam” trip was to spend a week getting to know specific regions of France more intimately. I stayed on a couple of extra days in Paris to walk off all the wonderful “extras” I enjoyed this week. Five and six course dinners every night with all the trimmings is more than my body can handle, not mention a full breakfast and lunch.

The food was exquisite and I made sure to enjoy the experience. We had duck and venison several times, as well as pigeon and lamb in addition to the standard fish course. While others had scallops, (they are in season) I had langoustine which are very small lobsters. Of course, there was foie gras and pates, let alone the butter and cheeses (the French put butter on the cheese! Wonderful…)

And then came dessert – always decadent and often chocolate!!  I lost count of  how many soufflé’s came after the dessert. The food and wines were absolutely spectacular! (Did I mention the pastries and breads?)

Each place we stayed is a Relais & Chateau property. This is a company that represents small, boutique four and five-star hotels with very fine Michelin star restaurants. Each was better than the next, but the first – Les Crayeres – and the last – Moulin de L’Abbaye – were my favorite.  At these two hotels, the general managers could not be more pleasant and gracious. The down side is we drove a lot and visited a different hotel each night and hardly got to enjoy the comforts of each.

We went to Champagne, Les Crayeres; Normandy, Chateau de la Cheneviere; Loire Valley, Chateau de Noirieux, and Domaine des Hauts de Loire; Dordogne, Chateau de La Treyne;  and finally Perigord, Moulin de L’Abbaye.

As time goes on I will write about each region.  The French have regions rather than states.  This trip was actually at least three separate holidays to do the regions justice. There was so much we passed by in order to get to the next place.

Which one of these regions would you like to visit? Plan next year’s holiday now….



About alwaysharriet

With thirty years experience in corporate and leisure travel consulting, Harriet Ahouse has traveled extensively throughout the Caribbean and worldwide. An avid scuba diver, she understands the requirements of travelers both on land and in the water. On the European scene she has offered traditional and personalized travel itineraries throughout the continent--Italy, France, and England are some of her favorites. As a Virtuoso Agent, she also has extensive resources to enhance her expertise in designing individual destination travel itineraries--and honeymoons--worldwide!
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