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Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

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bournemouth, england
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Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

Hi everyone,

I have been reading up on all your info and have heard a few times now about the whole of europe being on holiday during the months of July and August.

We are planning our trip and are finished in the South Coast of France in the last week of July.

How busy will it be then? Is it almost impossible to use the trains?

Please advise me as I am a little worried now!

THANK YOU!

Paris, France
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1. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

There is a real crowd on the cote d'Azur in the Summer. It is a fact, which doesn't mean that everything is impossible.

My suggestion is : try to avoid to move too much when you are there, means try to find an hotel close to the beach, at a walking distance. Do not expect being able to go around the Cote d'Azur, let's say make some 100 km/day trips, such as Cannes - Nice - Monaco in a single day.

A reservation for trains, as well as hotels, is mandatory.

Guildford, United...
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2. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

We have often holidayed in Bournemouth and in the Riviera in August. There is little to choose between the two as far as crowds are concerned.

I have never had a problem travelling by train but I wouldn't dream of trying to drive into, for example, San Tropez, after about 7.00am in the morning. Virtually the only part of the south of France that is ever busy is the immediate coastal strip, especially the road that hugs the sea. North of Grasse, for example, there are empty roads even on August weekends.

Don't worry. You will have a great time in some of Europe's most beautiful scenery.

Jersey, United...
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3. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

We go down in July in August, we make no reservations at all and never have a problem in the south of france between Cannes and Monaco getting the train when we want it using Nice as a base, we have almost always got the first hotel we choose to stay in but once we had to walk into 3-4 before one had room. All other times we have never had a problem esp with the trains, plenty of room. I think July august is the best time to head down to Nice, we love it then

Montreal, QC
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for Nice
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4. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

Of course it will be busy in July and August (French holidays are in August). But trains will be accessible without problems. More passengers but it is not a nightmare. Nevers worse than rush hours in the Paris Metro or the London Tube.... There will be more cars on the road but commute to save time and money.One good point about commuting is you travel with the local crowds.

Chicago, Illinois
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5. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

I hope this isn't a stupid question but do you need to make reservations for the trains to towns like Antibes, Cannes, Monte Carlo, VilleFranche? Do you need to reserve the bus in advance to Eze, Vence, St. Paul de Vence?

Thanks.

Chicago, Illinois
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6. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

I hope this isn't a stupid question but do you need to make reservations for the trains to towns like Antibes, Cannes, Monte Carlo, VilleFranche? Do you need to reserve the bus in advance to Eze, Vence, St. Paul de Vence?

Thanks.

Guildford, United...
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7. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

There is no reservation system or allocated seating for local trains or buses. I spend quite a bit of time on the Riviera and have never failed to get on a bus or train, although I can envisage the possibility of the occasional bus being full. A complication is that, like most Europeans, the French don't queue, so being first at the stop doesn't guarantee that you will get on.

Last week, I was in a group of about 12 waiting for the bus to Eze and the last two arrivals, young Russian women were first on the bus. But honestly, as I said before, just relax and everything will work out fine. If you don't have a wonderful holiday I will be very surprised.

Chicago, Illinois
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8. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

Thanks LondonBob. You've got loads of great advice and tips. Your postings have been very helpful. I'm looking forward to my trip.

Nice
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9. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

There��s no reason to worry.

The thing to avoid is to travel by car close to the coastline.

Guildford, United...
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10. Re: Are the crowds THAT bad July/August period?

M&M56, nice to hear from you. I am so enthusiastic about Nice and the surrounding area, I often encourage people to go there. No one has disagreed with me so far.

By the way I was pleasantly surprised when I visited Chicago. I didn't expect to be such an interesting city.

All the best, Bob