Category Archives: around Seattle

28 Responses to Getting in the mood for a France vacation

  1. Living all the way across the country from Edmonds, I have to watch the Rick Steves talks on line. It is great that he offers them streaming for those of us who are geographically challenged.

    • Yes, Steves is generous about sharing free information online and at his travel center, and good for him! I think when you love travel as much as he does, sharing information seems like the natural thing to do. I can relate, at a (much) more modest level: I have been running this blog – and the French Girl in Seattle Facebook community – in my free time, and for free, for over 5 years 🙂 Merci de votre visite et à bientôt.

  2. Glad to hear you’re going on another adventure! Iam planning a trip in 2017 for three months & so bery excited. Never been & it’s been my dream to explore as many parts of Europe as I can. Will try to see France, Italy, Spain this trip. Likely staying in airbnb’s as I like to see things from a locals perspective.
    Thank you for your tips & your excitment for travel.

    • Bonjour DiAnn. I wish you the most wonderful, enlightening, adventure-filled trip to Europe next year. Prepare well, be flexible, and you shall be rewarded. Airb’n’b is a good option, even if several major European (and American) cities are starting to crack down on them. There will always be bed and breakfasts, and small, centrally-located hotels that keep you downtown and and close to locals. They keep things real. Good luck trip planning. That’s almost as fun as the actual trip (Rick Steves guidebooks should help you a lot during that phase.) Bon voyage!

  3. The only thing I can think of that would be a hassle to pick up after arrival is a plug converter for recharging the phone. You can find them, but there’s no 24/7 Wal-mart or Target, so it’s more of a search.
    When I lived in NYC I would go to the Cloisters museum for a European afternoon escape.
    As for Rick Steve’s pronunciation, I have lived in France and Belgium for 20 years and still don’t say certain words quite right. My husband and kid correct me, but some sounds are hard. Husband speaks excellent English but also has an accent/mispronounces words. I think Rick Steve shows that you shouldn’t let that stop you from speaking. Just communicate; it doesn’t have to be perfect.
    And remember, there’s lots of amazing stuff to visit beyond Paris.

    • Bonjour and thank you for your visit! The comment about Rick’s pronunciation is tongue-in-cheek. I have lived in the US for 20 years and still mispronounce words as well. 😉 As I recall he stumbled on “Bayeux” several times, and many visitors do. Rouen, Caen, and Roanne also come to mind, all challenging words. As for visiting France outside Paris, as a Toulousaine, I can only agree with you. On my next trip, because my time off is now much more limited – welcome to the United States! – I will be visiting three different cities in two weeks, American style, and I will love reconnecting with la Belle France 😉 It’s a struggle to find articles in English about France outside Paris to share with my readers on Facebook, but I will keep looking for them. Bonne fin de weekend!

  4. I have been to two events where Rick Steve’s was the speaker…..he doesn’t dissappoint. I love travel guides and always find myself in the travel section of book stores.

    • Thank you for stopping by Janey! I love the travel guide section too. Talk about traveling vicariously! Rick Steves Europe in Edmonds has an excellent selection; and they let visitors use them for free if they want to plan their trip on site. That’s very generous of them.

  5. Love this information, V! I wondered how Rick feels about AirBnB? Did he happen to mention it? I’m planning a trip for next June-July and have found some great deals there.
    Thanks for sharing all your wealth of information with us!

    • Bonjour Phyllis. Rick may have mentioned AirBnB in passing, but did not actually discuss it. I am sure you can look up that topic on one of the very active boards on his website! I have used AirBnB in France, and have always been happy with the price and location. Apartments, however, varied. My biggest peeve is when landlords does not bother getting their stuff out of the way, and leave no room for guests in the closets or bathroom. Then you end up living out of your suitcase, and it can be a hassle in a smaller place.

  6. That was a very nice post, enjoyable to read. When we went to Seattle I saw the name of Edmonds and thought it a strange name for a town, but we did not drive there – our loss. Rick Steves certainly has a great tourist business, but … je vais dire cela en français – quand nous sommes allés à Venise je n’avais que son livre pour visiter la ville. Une fois de retour à Nice quelqu’un m’a demandé si je n’avais pas visité l’île arménienne dans la lagune de Venise. Je l’ignorais. J’ai regardé dans le livre de Steve sur Venise – rien la dessus. Cela m’a vraiment peiné d’avoir manqué cela car c’est une île historique que l’on peut visiter ou se trouve un monastère arménien de pères mékhitaristes. Je me suis dit, la prochaine fois je prendrai deux livres de guide touristique.

  7. I too always head to Edmonds for inspiration and shopping for travel. Rick’s library at his store is a great place to do research!

  8. Off Topic, sorry. I was interested on your take of “the perfect Salade Niçoise. I thought you would like to see my version of it.

    I was trained at the Cordon Bleu in Paris in 1998. It was only a 1 week course on “Domestic Food Preparation”, and a 1 weeks course on “French Provincial Cooking” but I learned a lot abut presenting food. My favorite thing was their version of Salade Niçoise, which I still do today.

    • Merci Keith. Très intéressant. There are many versions of la Salade Niçoise, as you know. One thing I learned in Nice is that the traditional recipe does not include green beans. Other than that, I say “let’s improvise!” 🙂

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