(asked by Littlemissperfect Lia from… somewhere)
(…) I hope you don’t mind me e-mailing you, I could not leave a message on you page as I don’t have a google account. My visit to France was very pleasant, totally different to the typical stereotype. (…) Anyway as me and some friends will be going back I just wanted to know if there’s anywhere you recommend for us to visit, we’ve recently visited some tourist sites eg. the Eiffel Tower and went to Saint-Germain-en-Laye which was absolutely beautiful.
So, I don’t mind you emailing me, but know that one can leave messages/comments even without a google account.
Now, how do you want me to give you give you advice about places to see when I don’t even know you? Especially if you say that you’ve already visited the tourist sites (which I never suggest to anybody to visit anyway) and even St-Germain-en-Laye where I’ve never been and have no plan to go to in the near (or not so near) future.
The only way I can give advice to somebody when they travel is when I know where they’re going (because believe it or not, even if France is not a big country by US standards (by European standards, it’s the biggest country in Western Europe) it’s as diverse (if not more) as the US) and when I know them (their tastes, their budget, the time they have, their means of transportation, their lifestyles and so on).
So know, I cannot tell you where to go or what to do when you’re in France, simply because I don’t know you.
(and as far as writing you a personal travel guide is concerned, how much are you paying?)
You certainly do attract some er, “interesting,” people and questions here.
If you’ve had a non-stereotypical trip to Paris as littlemisswhatever did (and yeah done the tower), then you’d have something to share with your friends when you went back.
From a foodie perspective, the Calvados area is a must - Trouville and Deauville, as is Provence, and the Champagne/Reims area, especially for the open air food markets in Champagne.
My advice is to plan your trip by considering what’s important to you. If it’s McDonalds stay at home and spend your money at the Epcot Center. If it’s genuine culture and the best food and drink in the World, plan your trip around this. Do the same if you have interests in the arts - there is such a depth of historical art/arts in France.
Basically, what I’m saying is, if someone of taste and culture tried to design a Disneyland for the deeply cultured and those who appreciate such, France would be the benchmark/model. Thus as the World is lucky enough to actually have France, a long as you have the manners to have learnt the basics of the language, and done a modicum of research, you could choose anywhere, and always be lucky - Calais being the exception.
Go! Discover the real France, you may have liked what you saw already, but they are very touristy and not the real France, although I’m sure they are quite nice…
I guess littlemissperfect ain’t quite so …
David, I don’t expect you to live up to your diatribe about political correctness and actually publish this reply to you, we shall see….
For your information, and as a supposed advocate for one’s country, you execute manners poorly, especially when going as far as refering to someone actually asking about France and seeking some enlightenment on the subject, as an ‘idiot!’
It does seem obvious that the enquirer was far more graceful in her behaviour, than you or indeed some of your fellow attackers are capable of.
Why not, as you so obvuously seek to be understood, (hence the blog,) rise to the occassion and dig deep for any sense of decorum? I, for one, would not care for your advice if this current behaviour is evidence of your character.
But then, perhaps you actually know far less of what you ostensibly ‘advise’ upon, especially in matters of elegance and fine dining. It seems that even I, as a novice, know Frnace better than you.
As to Disneyland, well, you and your fellow coutry-folk commissioned a Disney theme park in your very own capital city - where other European cities had declined the offer - a telling result I think….
What a contradiction you are David, such American manners, yet so pompous about all things French!
Why does everyone pick on ‘littlemissperfect’ in such a way? I think the question was an opportunity to assist her about France, no? Why the arrogance?
I agree with Rumpole!!! : P
P.S. Why not recommend Strasbourg as a place to visit?! It’s such a charming little town… Full of things to see… I really enjoyed it myself and we’re going up for the marche’ de noel….
Before going on any trip whether you are driving it or going by another other modes of transportation, it is important to have a variety of travel maps available. The last thing anybody wants to have happen is getting lost on his or her trip. Being lost takes valuable time away from enjoying yourself if it is a pleasure trip, or takes away from working time if the trip is for business.
I like getting lost on foot, but not in the car!! You find more cool places by getting lost on foot… In the car, getting lost on the road is just added time to the trip and an unnnecessary annoyance! : )