Why you should plan your vacation in Provence early.
With the economic climate being as it is, hotels and holiday resorts see an increase in last-minute bookings. Does this mean the trend nowadays is to plan and pack a week before leaving on the holiday you’ve been anticipating all year? In the case of vacation rentals and specifically in Provence I would strongly advise against it. If you want your stay in Provence to be the experience of a lifetime you have to know exactly what you want from your trip and therefore make every effort to get exactly that.
Planning to stay in an exclusive vacation rental is about experiencing Provence like a local, enjoying life in the South of France at your own rhythm. This can only be achieved if you set exact objectives for your emotional escape, and pinpoint key features of your stay that must be fulfilled.
Know when you want to go.
“A Year From Now You Will Wish You Had Started Today” – Karen Lamb
This quote has been used over and over on the Web, and I unapologetically use it here. Because it applies perfectly to vacation planning especially regarding 2013 in Provence. Rental property owners love nothing more than early bookings, it allows them to plan their rental’s occupation, plan for the staff required to keep the property running in the coming season and also to plan for improvements on their property year after year. They will go out of their way to make sure their guests are well cared for months in advance by preparing cots and high chairs for families for example. Whereas a booking made a month prior to arrival in the height of peak season will be considered with urgency rather than concern for their clients.
One important event to take into account in 2013 is the Tour de France visiting Mont Ventoux on the 13th of July. Which means that not only will it coincide with a National holiday but that the fortnight from the 7th to 20th of July are already being booked by cycling enthusiasts. So even if you have no interest in cycling but were planning to visit Avignon in early July you will face competition for this spot in the sun.
Know where you want to go.
Provence is a region with a rich variety of locations from the busy city of Avignon to the quiet out-of-the-way medieval village of Le Barroux. There is a full spectrum of locations that are the dream destinations to fit everyone’s taste. One must also take into account that some otherwise unremarkable villages are actually the highest sought after hot spots during the summer time. Good examples of this are Oppède-le-Vieux, Ménerbes, Eygalières…
Whether you want to be near a cultural centre like Saint-Rémy-de-Provence or in the midst of the Luberon National Park to enjoy Provence’s flora and fauna whilst visiting quaint medieval villages, you would do well to book in advance even if you don’t plan on coming in peak season (June-August).
The greatest advantages of booking a vacation rental are that you get privacy, autonomy and services that hotels don’t offer at similar rates, whether you are travelling as a couple or a large group of family or friends. These benefits are true in any of our exclusive vacation rentals but if you want the experience to be truly exceptional it has to be in a location that suits your needs. That can only be ensured through early bookings.
Know what you want to do.
Provence has a great appeal worldwide because it offers a high quality choice of activities and services. Whether you are planning wine touring for a week, discovering roman ruins, improving your Golf or touring the local markets and indulging your foodie needs, Provence is the best place to be.
Although the activities listed above are enjoyable within an hour radius from any of the vacation villas listed on our site, it is important to note that the nearer you are to your chosen interest, the more time you will spend enjoying these activities. If you pick a villa in Vaison-la-Romaine for example you will be just minutes away from renowned vineyards, fantastic roman sites and the Mont Ventoux, but 50 minutes from the nearest 18 hole golf course or the UNESCO recognised Luberon National Park.
Trips abroad are very personal adventures, emotional escapes that each traveller matures prior to experiencing it. They are very rarely a whim of the moment’s decisions. They are dreams that require careful preparations so that once they are fulfilled they are truly exceptional. This is what Just Provence strives to offer through our portfolio and to ensure it happens, early booking is essential.
Do you have any experience of planning a stay in Provence or France? Did you book your accomodation early?
Living locally I get the chance to try new wines, restaurants and attractions all round the year. But in your opinion where is the most convenient location to stay in to get a all round experience in Provence?
Further reading, this article: “Finding The Ideal Gîte in the Vaucluse: Reserve Your Own Private Provencal Lifestyle Early” by Provence Ventoux Blog is a useful guide to planning your stay in Provence.
If you have any questions or comments do not hesitate to leave a message or contact me at: [email protected].
See you soon.