14 days in France, Pamplona & Olite Itinerary

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1
La Rochelle, France
— 3 nights
Drive
2
Pamplona, Spain
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Olite, Spain
Drive
4
Bielle, France
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Carcassonne, France
— 1 night
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6
Cahors, France
— 2 nights
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7
Orleans, France
— 2 nights
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La Rochelle, France — 3 nights

White City

Driving on the narrow streets can be difficult in La Rochelle so walking or biking will give you the best view of the pale stone buildings that give the Vieux Port, or old port, a distinctly Mediterranean quality.
On the 24th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: make a trip to Port de Saint-Martin-de-Re, enjoy the sea views from Phare des Baleines, and then observe the fascinating underwater world at Aquarium La Rochelle.

To see reviews, photos, more things to do, and tourist information, read our La Rochelle travel route planner.

Antwerp, Belgium to La Rochelle is an approximately 6.5-hour combination of train and flight. You can also take a train; or drive. Expect a bit warmer evenings in La Rochelle when traveling from Antwerp in April, with lows around 9°C. You will have some time to spend on the 26th (Tue) before leaving for Pamplona.
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Parks · Tours · Outdoors · Historic Sites
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Find places to stay Apr 23 — 26:

Pamplona, Spain — 3 nights

Pamplona or Iruña is the historical capital city of Navarre, in Spain, and of the former Kingdom of Navarre.The city is famous worldwide for the running of the bulls during the San Fermín festival, which is held annually from July 6 to 14. On your second day here, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Catedral de Santa Maria and then admire the striking features of Plaza de la Virgen Blanca.

For maps, other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, you can read our Pamplona trip planner.

Traveling by car from La Rochelle to Pamplona takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or fly; or take a bus. April in Pamplona sees daily highs of 21°C and lows of 7°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Olite.
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Historic Sites
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Find places to stay Apr 26 — 29:

Olite, Spain

Olite is a town and municipality located in the Comarca de Tafalla comarca, Merindad de Olite merindad, in Navarre, Spain.According to Isidore of Seville's, the town of Oligicus was founded by Swinthila, Visigothic King of Hispania in order to control and punish the Vascones. Kick off your visit on the 29th (Fri): explore the fascinating landscape at Bardenas Reales and then step into the grandiose world of Palacio Real de Olite.

For ratings, traveler tips, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Olite trip builder website.

You can drive from Pamplona to Olite in an hour. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. In April, plan for daily highs up to 19°C, and evening lows to 7°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Bielle.
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Find places to stay Apr 29 — 30:

Bielle, France — 2 nights

Start off your visit on the 30th (Sat): walk around Parc'Ours, fly down the slopes at La Pierre Saint Martin, and then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Monastere de Saint Norbert de Sarrance. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: explore the fascinating underground world of Grottes de Betharram, then learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Zoo d'asson, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Station Ski et Snow Gourette.

To find reviews, photos, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Bielle trip planner.

Getting from Olite to Bielle by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Sun) early enough to drive to Carcassonne.
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Find places to stay Apr 29 — May 1:

Carcassonne, France — 1 night

Medieval Heart of France

Best known as a fortified town, Carcassonne is a walled city that provided the inspiration for the castle in Disney's "Sleeping Beauty" and the location for many scenes in Kevin Costner's movie "Robin Hood." For a daily dose of excitement, medieval jousting tournaments are held twice per day between the two walls--while this may sound like a typical touristy show, it's actually an entertaining display of combative competition and horsemanship.
For maps, ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Carcassonne online travel planner.

Traveling by car from Bielle to Carcassonne takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. In May, daytime highs in Carcassonne are 24°C, while nighttime lows are 12°C. On the 2nd (Mon), you're off to Cahors.
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Find places to stay May 1 — 2:

Cahors, France — 2 nights

Almost entirely surrounded by water, Cahors is a lovely medieval peninsular town located in the heart of the red wine country.
Explore Cahors' surroundings by going to Cite Religieuse (in Rocamadour), Bourg Medieval de Saint-Cirq Lapopie (in Saint-Cirq-Lapopie) and Grotte du Pech-Merle (in Cabrerets). There's lots more to do: explore the fascinating underground world of Gouffre de Padirac, pick up some local products at Marche de Cahors, take some stellar pictures from Mont Saint-Cyr, and pause for some serene contemplation at Cathedrale Saint-Etienne.

To find ratings, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Cahors trip maker.

You can drive from Carcassonne to Cahors in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train; or take a bus. In May, daytime highs in Cahors are 25°C, while nighttime lows are 11°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Wed) so you can go by car to Orleans.
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Find places to stay May 2 — 4:

Orleans, France — 2 nights

Orléans is a city in north-central France, about 111km southwest of Paris. Kick off your visit on the 5th (Thu): take in the spiritual surroundings of Orléans Cathedral, then don't miss a visit to Place du Martroi, and then contemplate the long history of Hotel Groslot.

For other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Orleans trip planning website.

You can drive from Cahors to Orleans in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train; or take a bus. While traveling from Cahors, expect slightly colder days and about the same nights in Orleans, ranging from highs of 22°C to lows of 10°C. On the 6th (Fri), you're off to home.
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Find places to stay May 4 — 6:

France travel guide

4.3
France has been the world's most popular tourist destination for decades, and geographically, it is one of the most diverse countries in Europe. Its cities are holiday hot spots and contain some of the greatest treasures in Europe, its countryside is prosperous and well tended, and it boasts dozens of major tourist attractions, like Paris, the French Riviera, the Atlantic beaches, the winter sport resorts of the French Alps, as well as the castles of the Loire Valley, Brittany, and Normandy. The country is renowned for its gastronomy, particularly wines and cheeses, as well as its history, culture, and fashion industry.

You'll find that the French people are very polite and may react coldly to you if you forget this. You might be surprised as you're greeted by other customers and the proprieter when you walk into a restaurant or a shop. Be sure to take your sightseeing off the beaten path in France. Besides the famous Eiffel Tower and the chic resorts of the Côte d'Azur (French Riviera) you'll find many places to visit in the form of museums filled with fine art, crafts, and archaeological relics, wonderful medieval villages and castles, diverse national parks, and local shopping direct from artisans themselves.

Whether you're touring the Christmas Markets or going skiing during winter, viewing the springtime influx of color in Provence, sunbathing on the Mediterranean coast in the summer, or watching the fall foliage against the backdrop of the châteaux in the Loire Valley, you're sure to find just the right place to be. Spring is a time when the tourist attractions are just starting to expand their hours, but it may still be cold in the mountainous regions and the north. Summer is the busiest time in France with the longest hours for many museums and attractions, but it's often when you will experience the most crowds. Winter in France is filled with winter carnivals, Christmas Markets, and of course, skiing. Fall is a time to celebrate the release of Beaujolais nouveau wine in November, as well as experience Nuit Blanche, a day in October when major attractions, museums, galleries, parks, and swimming pools remain open all night.
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