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anne&corky
June 11th, 2012, 02:04 PM
I'm sailing on the Soltice in October of this year. I'm trying to decide if a tour to Grasse or similar is better than hiring a taxi at the port and doing my own thing. There are two tours that go inland and they are not far from the ship and each other. Can anyone give me some guidelines?

Hlitner
June 11th, 2012, 11:00 PM
Depending on taxis in the South of France is somewhat risky. There are times when taxis might not even show-up at the parking lot near the tender pier and even when there are taxis the drivers may speak little or no English they often ask for lots of money (taxis in this part of France are expensive). If you want to take a tour (as opposed to simply renting a car) you would be well advised to try an pre-arrange a tour before your trip.

Hank

anne&corky
June 12th, 2012, 08:40 AM
that is the information I really needed. Thanks for your prompt response.

Anne

Hlitner
June 12th, 2012, 09:45 AM
I will add some fuel to the fire by relating a Cannes story. About 3 years ago we tendered into Cannes from a Princess ship where we had tender priority (we are Elite with Princess). We got ashore a little before 8am and as we walked past the parking lot (this is close to the tender pier where the tour buses and taxis normally wait) there was not a taxi to be found (we wanted a taxi to save a hike to our rental car office). So we walked along the marina towards the other side of town and we came upon a cafe (near the town end of the marina) where there were about 6 taxis parked. We stopped for some cafe au lait and noticed all the taxi drivers sitting at a large table drinking cafe and smoking their cigarettes. Bottom line was that these taxi drivers were not going to let a mere cruise ship interfere with their morning cup of java :) This is the reality of France (a country that DW and I really enjoy).

Hank

anne&corky
June 13th, 2012, 08:45 AM
Thanks Hank. Since you are much more familiar with the area than I am, can I ask your opinion?

By way of background, this is our first Med cruise but we have driven extensively all over Europe, including the French Riviera and Monaco. On our previous trip we did not actually visit Cannes or Nice, just drove coast, overnighting in San Raphael and Monaco.
For my excursion here, would you recommend just walking into Cannes, taking a guided walking tour from the ship, or taking a tour inland to visit Fayence & Seillans or another tour that visits Grasse and St. Paul de Vence?
Any tips would be appreciated.

Hlitner
June 13th, 2012, 06:38 PM
Thanks Hank. Since you are much more familiar with the area than I am, can I ask your opinion?

By way of background, this is our first Med cruise but we have driven extensively all over Europe, including the French Riviera and Monaco. On our previous trip we did not actually visit Cannes or Nice, just drove coast, overnighting in San Raphael and Monaco.
For my excursion here, would you recommend just walking into Cannes, taking a guided walking tour from the ship, or taking a tour inland to visit Fayence & Seillans or another tour that visits Grasse and St. Paul de Vence?
Any tips would be appreciated.

I should immediately say we have never been the Fayence or Seillans (or at least we do not remember) so cannot comment on those ports (where is Eurocruiser when I need him :)) As to Cannes, just about anywhere you want to go in the city you can do on foot (unless you have mobility problems or want to go somewhere inland). The best part of Cannes is within a few blocks of the water and hiring a tour guide is (IMHO) a waste of money. Just download some info on the city or get yourself a half decent tour book. There is also one of those silly mini-trains that will take you around Cannes (it starts in front of the convention center) for those that prefer to take a ride to get the lay of the land. As to St Paul de Vence, we are pretty outspoken here on CC saying that it's one of our favorite places in this part of France. Regarding Grasse, the small town has some charm but we never felt it was worth the time for a a port day. Of course they do have a few perfume factories but DW and her mother were both underwhelmed by the quality of the perfumes.

Hank
P.S. DW thinks we drove into Fayence one day (several years ago) the same time we visited Grasse (this was on a multi-week driving trip). The fact that neither one of us can remember Fayence means we were not impressed or perhaps its just one of those senior moments. Guess we will have to stop at that town the next time we are driving in the area :)