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wherebee

Safe parts of France and Italy - recommendations

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So the missus wants to see a bit of France before it is lost.  Her words, not mine (yes, she is a keeper).

 

DOSBODS massiiiive - which parts of France and Italy are rapefugee free?  I was thinking Brittany and rural Normandy?  Champagne country as well?

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My mum + dad run all over France and Spain in the camper van.  I've been trying to tell them but they wont listen.

One night my mum did get a bit scared because some hippies turned up next to them in a camp site in the south of France.

That's all that happened.

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Re France, just avoid the grotty-looking parts of any large cities? (Paris, Lyon, Marseilles. Don't know about Bordeaux.) But all rural areas in France mostly fine IMO. 

Just take the usual precautions would be sensible as when travelling anywhere eg try not to look worth robbing, don't have overly expensive looking clothes/jewellery, keep away from dark alleys and rough zones? Don't stay out too late? (Like back home?)

We got robbed in Spain about 30 yrs ago - our own faut tho. We parked our hire car on road just outside of our (nice) hotel and someone smashed the window in broad daylight while we were having a siesta. Husband then had to go to police station that evening to get a report for the car insurance. (Which didn't cover our stuff nicked from the car which we stupidly have left in the boot area.) He was gone for HOURS as the queue at the police station (to report street crimes) was so LONG. (Ppl robbed at knife point etc.) This made us realise that we needed to be more careful! And afterwards saw broken glass from broken car windows all along our street. (Hotel said you really need to park in an underground car.park at night!)

Lots of gypsy women around then (in Spain) trying to sell single roses to tourists in an aggressive, menacing manner eg blocking the pavement and getting excited, pushing the rose at you and letting it fall. (Then expecting you to pay up etc.) Didn't like that! 

So from my limited experience, I would say tourist crime a bit higher in Spain as opposed to France? But then a FOAF got her handbag nicked at Toulouse airport last week, so who knows?  (Distraction theft - one guy makes you get out of the can saying you have dropped something while the other guys grabs the bag from inside the car.) 

But both countries have millions of visitors and most have a great time? So just be sensible and you'll be fine all over/anwhere?!  

 

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Posted (edited)

I know a place 

But i don't usually tell others because then it becomes pleb central.

Ferney Voltaire (home of Voltaire)

Divonne les Bains (this is beautiful) 

Cessey 

Jura mountains 

Lac Lemain 

Annecy nearby

1 car 7 days

Edited by WorkingPoor

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30 minutes ago, WorkingPoor said:

I know a place 

But i don't usually tell others because then it becomes pleb central.

Ferney Voltaire (home of Voltaire)

Divonne les Bains (this is beautiful) 

Cessey 

Jura mountains 

Lac Lemain 

Annecy nearby

1 car 7 days

right near geneva?....hmmm, that could work.

 

thank you WP.  Any problems with mussies?  I have run into some in Geneva itself.

 

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36 minutes ago, WorkingPoor said:

I know a place 

But i don't usually tell others because then it becomes pleb central.

Ferney Voltaire (home of Voltaire)

Divonne les Bains (this is beautiful) 

Cessey 

Jura mountains 

Lac Lemain 

Annecy nearby

1 car 7 days

What about that (Iraqi-British) family who got shot in their car in Annecy a few years ago?! (Case still unsolved!)

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, whocares said:

What about that (Iraqi-British) family who got shot in their car in Annecy a few years ago?! (Case still unsolved!)

Yeah ok but they were (unlucky) witneses to a whacking 

17 minutes ago, wherebee said:

right near geneva?....hmmm, that could work.

 

thank you WP.  Any problems with mussies?  I have run into some in Geneva itself.

 

No if there any they'll be wealthy types

Edited by WorkingPoor

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18 minutes ago, wherebee said:

right near geneva?....hmmm, that could work.

 

thank you WP.  Any problems with mussies?  I have run into some in Geneva itself.

 

It's just 1 junction down the motorway from geneva airport

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12 minutes ago, wherebee said:

Cheers WP.  That could cover both switzerland and france for the missus who has never been to either.  appreciated

 

Nice part of the world, lake annecy is fantastic 

( mob hitmen excluded lol) 

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Posted (edited)

Interesting. I live here where WP is talking about and would have suggested the Basque region San Sebastián, Biarritz, also the nearby Pyrenees and the Landes. But they both have their different beauty. Annecy is pretty but bloody awful traffic. Better and cheaper food in Basque Country and area, and nicer people IMO. San Seb is a great city, mountains, beaches, great food and atmosphere/bars, but unreliable weather. 

I guess oceans and forests are nothing special if coming from Oz so maybe WP is right, lakes and mountains will be more different. If you want a real Swiss feel you have to get out of Francophone CH and into the German speaking regions. 

Edit. Stupid me forgot Chamonix valley is down the road from here - unmissable despite being touristy IMO. Can direct you to a walk that will leave you speechless (and a bit breathless) if you’re both fit and it’s sunny, there is a less fit persons  alternative as well. 

Edited by swiss_democracy_for_all

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5 hours ago, WorkingPoor said:

I know a place 

But i don't usually tell others because then it becomes pleb central.

Ferney Voltaire (home of Voltaire)

Divonne les Bains (this is beautiful) 

Cessey 

Jura mountains 

Lac Lemain 

Annecy nearby

1 car 7 days

Ferney ? Home of Jean-Claude Romand who is up for parole any day now. Best avoid.

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The brutalist architecture in the Scampia area of Naples would probably be worth a look and the local community always seems tight-knit.

 

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I'd go to the Basque Country. You've got the coast and mountains. Was last there 3 years ago near Cap Breton and very few gimmegrants. 

3 minutes ago, SNACR said:

Naples would probably be worth a look and the local community always seems tight-knit.

Naples is full of gimmegrants.

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7 hours ago, whocares said:

Re France, just avoid the grotty-looking parts of any large cities? (Paris, Lyon, Marseilles. Don't know about Bordeaux.) But all rural areas in France mostly fine IMO. 

+1

In Paris, very roughly speaking avoid the North East corner. Stations can be iffy, underground is full of pickpockets and fare-dodging gimmegrants.

Avoid the massive “soviet architecture” council estates anywhere in the country.

Other than that, France is pretty safe!

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3 hours ago, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

Interesting. I live here where WP is talking about and would have suggested the Basque region San Sebastián, Biarritz, also the nearby Pyrenees and the Landes. But they both have their different beauty. Annecy is pretty but bloody awful traffic. Better and cheaper food in Basque Country and area, and nicer people IMO. San Seb is a great city, mountains, beaches, great food and atmosphere/bars, but unreliable weather. 

+1 for San Sebastian, the Basque country and the SW coast. Very different atmospheres, but all very nice. We’re going to Les Landes ourselves on holiday this summer.

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Recommend Le Touquet, 1 hour from Calais.  Also Deauville, Normandy.  Beyond fabulous markets in both places.

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41 minutes ago, DeepLurker said:

+1

In Paris, very roughly speaking avoid the North East corner. Stations can be iffy, underground is full of pickpockets and fare-dodging gimmegrants.

Avoid the massive “soviet architecture” council estates anywhere in the country.

Other than that, France is pretty safe!

1509201325823.jpg.207176d86f8c55a83fa7cd6a79c065a8.jpg

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Frank Hovis said:

Brittany.

Like Devon and Cornwall but without the crowds or cost.

A jewish colleague retired to Brittany a few years back and loves it there, he can't stand coming back to Britain to visit.

Edited by JackieO

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37 minutes ago, gibbon said:

1509201325823.jpg.207176d86f8c55a83fa7cd6a79c065a8.jpg

Not been to Paris since 2001 travelling on the metro scared me shitless back then! No way would I go there these days...

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8 hours ago, wherebee said:

Cheers WP.  That could cover both switzerland and france for the missus who has never been to either.  appreciated

 

Don't forget you'll need a fat wallet to eat/drink/sleep/park in Switzerland, unless you are camping or YHA-ing! :) Apart from that, it's very nice. (And never any trouble.)

My husband is Swiss (from Jura region) so we did some lovely walks around Pontresina one September time, just us 2.  Great weather, beautiful/safe walks, well-signed.  Also have done similar walks with the 3 kids when they were all under 10. https://www.outdooractive.com/en/hikes/pontresina/hiking-in-pontresina/1463765/

Outdoor hot springs/spas in the Alps (eg Loèche-les-Bains where we have been) can be pretty expensive but fun if you like that sot of thing. (And really good after a few physically active days?!) https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g188077-Activities-c40-Swiss_Alps.html

Got those sort of thermal bath places near us here (in the French Pyrénées) too, but haven't tried any of them yet. (Think the Swiss ones are better but will be pricier!)

 

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