Recommended driving routes through France to Mojacar

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05 Sep 2010 00:00 by KevinW4 Star rating in London/Mojacar Playa. 25 posts Send private message

 Hi, newly retired and now planning on a road trip from Dunkirk visiting friends near Limoges and Bergerac before heading on down to Mojacar. We've driven fairly far in Spain in rented cars but not in our RHD!! So we're looking to take it steady, via Rouen, Chartres and overnight in Orleans area (Day 1) before getting to our friends at St Seurin Leulac and overnight with them (Day 2). Then down to Bergerac and stay with friends (Day 3) before hopefully going via Millais Bridge to Perpignan (Day 4) then down the coast to Valencia (Day 5) before arriving at Mojacar.

Has anyone any recommended routes that fits in with that itinerary, and are we trying to accomplish too much, or not enough? We'd planned to leave Dover early on a Monday, get used to driving in France (avoiding Paris Periphique) and Orleans seemed a good place to overnight, so a good value hotel, not too far from the main road would be ideal. We both drive and have SatNav so it's just asking more seasoned drivers for advice on places to see (or avoid) and whether we can sensibly shorten the journey time.

We are planning this for early October, so please give us your best advice, plus any recommendations for a return route which can be more direct. We don't object to Tolls, but if an alternative good route exists, we'd like to consider it.

What else should we be aware of, what cards do we need for payments on Tolls and petrol stations etc, good hotels, sights not to miss etc. We've got all the spare bulbs, hi viz etc, it's just asking for others experience to get the maximum enjoyment and minimal stress from this journey.

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05 Sep 2010 20:17 by gcarton Star rating. 145 posts Send private message

Actually from our own experience, Rouen is more stressful than Paris peripherique, which we  usually do in the morning. We then do the Millau and to Narbonne in a day. I would agree that Perpigonon to Mojacar is a stretch too far. We usually stop in Valencia for a night, but this year it will be Castellon.  This year we have found Spanish hotels are massively discounted (50 Euros for a really good hotel, so we make a holiday of it). We are then down to Mazarron. Best planner is which gives alternative routes.

Good luck



This message was last edited by gcarton on 05/09/2010.

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05 Sep 2010 22:28 by KevinW4 Star rating in London/Mojacar Playa. 25 posts Send private message

 Guy, thanks for your help.

We had planned to stop overnight around Valencia, but will check with our friends who regularly drive to and from London on their preferred route. Rouen worse than the Periphique!! Wow!!

We'll certainly check the hotels, possibly Ibis and also those in Spain. We might save the Millais until our return, as it seems a bit of a diversion from Bergerac. We just want sensible stages allowing for good scenery and best routes within a sensible price. We don't need tolls all the way, especially if we get good scenery etc in return for a little slower journey. 4 days there and 4 days or less back suits our preferred planning.

Any other ideas, folks?

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06 Sep 2010 12:41 by iain4702 Star rating in East Lothian & Lo.... 42 posts Send private message

Hi Kevin, My wife and I travelled down by car this summer to our holiday home in Los Montesinos(approx 1700mls) but we live in Scotland near Edinburgh which is about 450 mls from home to Dover.

We left Scotland Thursday at teatime and ferried over abour 3am .friday night  spent in Orleans and  Satueday night in Gerona then arrived at our house Sunday early afternoon.

More or less same time scale coming back although we did stay in different locations.


Please contact me if you want mor info.


Regards  Iain & Evelyn

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26 Oct 2010 01:03 by KevinW4 Star rating in London/Mojacar Playa. 25 posts Send private message

Just an update to help any others driving to Spain for the first time.

It is enjoyable!! OK, we avoided Paris, headed for Rouen from Calais and stopped at Saran just north of Orleans as it seemed sensible to have a "gentle" introduction to European roads... Although French autoroutes are only two lanes, driving discipline is soooo much better, catch up to someone, check if safe to overtake, indicate, overtake, indicate and come back in, Repeat as necessary....... allows continual speed limit driving with little stress..... Don't know why we didn't do it years ago.

Stayed with friends near Limoges and again near Toulouse, then drove to near Barcelona and stayed at a great hotel, cheap room but superb standard. Food and drink though took the price up steeply. Then 7 hours to Mojacar, again easy drive, just busy around Barcelona and Valencia, but no serious problems.

now, we're planning our return, mid November, so looking for a sensibly priced hotel and where to eat, close to E15/A7 around Barcelona, then we want to visit the Millau Viaduct and head up to say 3 hours from Calais but avoiding Paris. Should we plan to pass east or west of Paris and where is a good place to stay 2 or 3 hours from Calais?

We appreciate the help given so far, and hope to make the journey back with say two drives of 8 hours a day, plus a few more hours to Calais, 2pm ferry.

Look forward to your ideas!


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26 Oct 2010 08:03 by jencoo Star rating in east Yorkshire/ Daya.... 131 posts Send private message

Hi Kevin

As you are taking the route up via Millau, that automatically puts you on route towards Paris, and the toll motorways. After Claremont Ferrand you have the choice of tolls or ordinary roads, which are not all dual carriageway and  which we have travelled several times without problems. A good place to head for is Chartres west of paris, on to Dreux where there is achoice of motel type overnight stops and also about 4 hours from Calais. Dreux up to Evereaux then Rouen,  Abbeville and Calais. The roads on this route are quite fast moving, consisting of a mixture of dual and  single carriageway. Hope this is useful, although the subject has been covered many times on this forum and a little bit of research through the forum will no doubt give you a number of different options


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26 Oct 2010 23:49 by KevinW4 Star rating in London/Mojacar Playa. 25 posts Send private message

 jenco: Thanks and you're spot on with our provisional planning. We actually came down that way, Rouen, Evreux, Chartres, Orleans, Limoges and Toulouse to Perpignan. We were just wondering if the eastern route might be a better route (not that there was any problem with the "western" route, just seeing if there was a "better" way).

Hopefully, good cheap hotels with restaurants somewhere close to the A7 in Barcelona to Girona area and again 3 or 4 hours out from Calais, perhaps Chartres area would be useful.

Thanks for your advice! Cheers!

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