|Subject: Re: ZINE Walking tours - France|
All of our trips are hiking/walking trips. We always stay in B&B's or small
hotels (in France, the Logis system of hotels is terrific and quite good!!! -
Also, they are not that expensive. - about $80 - 100/with private room and
bath, dinner and breakfast for a very good quality Logis. -- all rated with
toques - Also, the info.explaining this system is written in Fr, English and
I believe German in the beginning of the book)
You can get a free guide in France at all of the SI's or perhaps (atleast they used to send you one) from the web. The book comes with a map. Also, on the web you can get a Gite guide that might be of help.
I , too, have read and really enjoyed LeFavour's book -- 'France on Foot' - especially the information on the maps for hiking/trekking/ meandering. This part of this book gave us invaluable data on how to go about hiking/walking alone. France, especially, has the most wonderful maps called Series Bleu (I think), which we used for hiking, but also for finding out-of-the-way unmarked roads and/or trailheads. Their website is: www.ign.fr/. We would never go into the mts without them!!! These are really maps for hiking, but they are very, very detailed and you might want to check them out.
We have looked into the groups that you mentioned, but prefer to go it alone - going a bit off season so that we can always find very, very reasonable and wonderful place to stay. Sometimes, it's not what we had expected but many times we have returned and have made some wonderful friends!!! I also use the Rivage books -- Fodor's Rivages 'Bed and Breakfasts of Character and Charms in France' and their small hotel book also (although that has bigger establishments and they are generally more expensive) We also like Alastair Sawday's 'Special Places to Stay series -- French Hotels, Inns and Other Places and have also used this guide solely for travel in the Alpujarra in Spain a few years ago. All of the SI's (Information offices in the tiny villages) have copies of the regional B&B and Gite guides with pictures. You really won't have trouble traveling without a group. We always find it much, much more reasonable and love meeting all of the people. Also, going it alone, without reservations beforehand, you can move away from nasty weather.... if need be! I hope this is of help. We have been traveling this way for a very long time!!!
Good luck and if I can help further, please contact me. Regards, Susie, Newton MA