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Thread: Will the South of France be full?? Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
14-07-2011 10:02
grizzlyj Hi

and have a good trip!

In our experience actually on the Med coast is rammed, but the further inland the quieter it is. As has been said some of the coastal sites that were full we were glad we didn't fit, I'm not sure how some of the vehicles actually squeezed on! Maybe the sites have a crane

We could just fit right by the gate at the Avignon site, which was also next to an area used by some youngsters to play drums well into the night every night. Having had a look round town for a few days and left, if I remember rightly there is a kind of one way system to take you back over the bridge, and there was loads of space, and campers using them, smack on the river! If we'd have known we wouldn't have used the site, so I think find it, but then cruise past and you will find plenty of room, and we would have actually got some sleep

We got a bit lost in Marseille, and ended up in a small car park where the ferry from Tunisia (?) off loads, on the sea front maybe 300m west of the lovely central little marina. Totally free, some people sleeping in cars waiting for friends disembarking, and we met an Algerian kids basketball team who were fab!

To quote from our diary at the end of July 2009-

"After spending the last couple of days parked up in Marseille waiting in vain for the wind to drop so we could take a boat trip out to LíIlle DíIf (as in The Count of Monte Christo), we decided to give it up and head for the infamous south coast proper - Saint Tropez and the like. What a mistake! The whole coast road was absolutely stuffed with traffic, every square inch of roadside verge was parked on, and all the parking areas were for cars only. The traffic jams in one place were so bad that people resorted to driving the wrong way up a slip road to get off the main carriageway, despite the slip road still having cars driving straight at them!"

We did find one site/aire on the beach that was in the Vicarious guide but whose name I forget and didn't write down , stayed there for a bit and then went into the Alps where there were far far fewer tourists

Happy travels


14-07-2011 09:57
Carl_n_Flo If you only want to spend a full day in Aix, I can recommend taking the road north toward Systeron and head for a large village / small town called Venelles.

Very quiet, large car-park right in the centre of the village and regular bus service to the centre of Aix.

Perfectly adequate for a couple of nights - you will not be disturbed - and excellent boulangerie right on your doorstep!!!

Use it every time we are down that way visiting Flo's son.

14-07-2011 06:56
monkeyman esperelda - forgot to say above: avoid the French motorways on Saturdays from now until the end of August! Especially those leading to, returning from or near the Med! Can be an absolute nightmare .... back to that Sat-Sat booking thing the French do - everyone on the move at the same time (although I've probably forgotten what the M25 is like on a daily basis since it's 12 yrs since I last drove round it .

Also if you're travelling with a dog watch out for sandflies ( - some carry Leishmanosis which can be very nasty or even fatal ( - pretreat with special collar from the Vet's but you'd need to fit it right now and keep it on for a couple of months after returning to UK (fit to the dog not to yourself!)

Hope that helps - have a great one!
14-07-2011 00:27
Forrester If the aire at Agues Mortes is full there is a car parking area on the town side of the river FOC. There is a barrier, sometimes up, sometimes down, but it can be opened manually.
When i had a boat there I left my car there for 2 weeks-noproblem Mind you it was 7 years ago so things may have changed.
Beware of mossies & biting flies.
13-07-2011 22:52
monkeyman Hey Gareth

if you're passing Chamonix I'd really recommend - Camping Mer de Glace.

Stayed there a few weeks ago - originally planned a few nights and stayed 2 weeks! Not sure how busy it will be in peak season though

esperelda - you'll find it will be peak season for the French (think whole country on holiday and down at the Med at the same time!) BUT if you're flexible you should be able to find a pitch. Good advice about arriving late morning /early afternoon BUT many main sites only rent Sat-Sat during July/Aug. Big disadvantage of booking in advance is a crippling 'admin' fee (think ripoff) even for a single night or two at this time of year - in addition to pitch fees + extras.

Favorite palces: Municipal at St Maries de la Mer is huge + good (watch out for mozzies) or the Clos du Rhone campsite ( ) the other side of town; don't miss Aigues-Mortes, see previous comment; Argeles-sur Mer has heaps of campsites including a great municipal right on the beach; Coillure is brilliant but camping limited (we stayed before at Les Criques des Portails - - but it's quite a walk to town centre).

Also try France Passion ( - you need to join in advance) think network of Caravan Club CLs - small, free and no reservation in advance: pitches first come first served. Very useful as a 'backup', about £30/yr.

Good luck et 'bonnes vacances'!
13-07-2011 22:44
tony645 We are also going end of this month for 5 weeks, nothing booked apart from the tunnel, have a good one :P
13-07-2011 22:33
laikaecovip Hi ,

We are going to French Alps similar period as you....

I have looked at booking many sites and all have space, so i have only booked the first few days and we`ll wing it after that.

I pretty confident we wont have to many problems..

Have good hols

13-07-2011 22:25
Trippytinker We're going at the same time as you and have a week booked the other 4 weeks we just take pot-luck. As long as you don't want isolation you'll be fine.
13-07-2011 22:03
Grizzly PS Forgot to say; if you've not been to Marseilles before then go ! We were really amazed by it- totally different from what we had imagined. There is a very good bus service all round the bay that takes you to all the major places.

Another interesting place with a good municipal campsite ( bus to town at the entrance) is Nimes. That's a huge site and I doubt ever fills up.

13-07-2011 21:43
esperelda Thank you, thank you, I already feel better - what a wonderful site this is!!
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