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Old 08-12-2012, 06:16 PM   #1
Cousin Orville
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Esprite de France photos

My family was on the same Esprit de France adventure as tsgirl. You can find her trip report here: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2974424
She wrote a great trip report, and there's not much I can add. I'll just say it was a wonderful trip to a beautiful area of France that I had never visited before. It was our first ABD, and we had the best time. The guides and everyone on our group was were so great. My only main criticism would be a few of the meals. Having never been on an ABD before it is impossible for me to compare, but speaking with others, reading trip reports, and listening to the podcast, it strikes me as food continues to be ABD's main weakness. I for one would rather pay more and get a higher quality of food if necessary. But we did had a number of very good meals particularly some of the lunches. Also, if were up to me I'd add another night in both Normandy and Loire (maybe just cut Paris out). Now we fell in love with Paris, and it's now one of my favorite cities, but it's so easy to do on your own. I just loved both Normandy and Loire, I wanted to see more. And these more out of the way locals seem to be where ABD shines. Overall, it was a wonderful trip and I've already highly recommended it to friends back home, so count me as a new raving ABD fan. Can't wait for the next one. So here's some more pictures from the trip:


Day 1 - Versailles:


Trianon Palace Hotel

Day 2 - Versailles, Giverny







Monet's Garden








Everyone showing off their artistic side...


Royal Barriere Hotel (home sweet home for the next 2 nights)


Rained just a bit on our way to dinner.


Speaking of dinner, I will stop there for now.
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Last edited by Cousin Orville; 08-13-2012 at 07:07 AM.
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Old 08-12-2012, 06:22 PM   #2
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Great photos! The Versailles trip is an overlap of the London/Paris itinerary so they can probably use those days to add on the ones you guys think should have longer days. This trip looks very interesting and the hotels are simply wonderful!!
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Old 08-12-2012, 07:24 PM   #3
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Kevin, so much fun seeing your pics. Thanks for sharing. I miss everyone!
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Old 08-12-2012, 07:25 PM   #4
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Great pictures. I love how Monet's garden really looks like a Monet painting!

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Check out my Southwest Splendors Trip Report! (2008). 5 parts, full of pics & details & impressions!
My Taming the Last Frontier ABD Alaska Trip Report! (2009)! 7 parts, pictures, stories, & more impressions!
Also check out my ABD/DCL Mediterranean Magic Trip Report! (2010)
NOW POSTING! My DIS Unplugged London/Paris/Disneyland Paris Trip Report! (2011)
Now posting my Greek Odyssey Trip Report (2013)
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Old 08-13-2012, 07:21 AM   #5
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Day 3 - Normandy


Mont Saint-Michel










Les Vergers de Ducy apple orchard


Making cider I think. Couldn't quite hear. It was a nice stop, though. Very out of the way.
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Old 08-13-2012, 06:48 PM   #6
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Day 4 - Normandy and traveling to the Loire Valley


Omaha Beach




The American Cemetery


Le Mans Auto Museum
I would have actually liked some more time here, but I think I'm in the minority.





Our hotel in the Loire Valley. I think Cindy already posted a picture of it, but it's so pretty another can't hurt.


Every room is individually decorated. Here's ours.


and another shot of the entrance
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Old 08-13-2012, 07:18 PM   #7
Cousin Orville
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Day 5 - Loire Valley


Cycling around Chambord Chateau


Chambord. I never get tired of pictures of famous places with the ABD sign held hight in front.


Relaxing on the terrace back at our own Chateau before dinner. (I spy someone familiar in the background... )


Day 6 - Loire and traveling to Paris


Chenoncheau


Chateau du Clos Luce (da Vinci's final home with models of his designs)

[img]http://*****************************/7769014952_1f18ac9954_c.jpg[/img]

Day 7 - Paris


waiting for the elevator to ascend the Eiffel Tower




We went over the the Louvre earlier in the day to spend a little more time. In the evening they show you the 3 pieces of art that Cindy posted. If you want to see anything else, you should schedule some time to do it on your own. I'm not sure if my son is actually listening to the Nintendo Louvre guide here or if he figured out how to play a game on it.




farewell dinner at the Louvre

"Day 8" - Flying Home


Clementine and Jason were amazing. The bar for all of my future ABD guides has been set ridiculously high. Because of them we will continue to do ABD's whenever and wherever we can. These guys were great.
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Last edited by Cousin Orville; 08-13-2012 at 07:26 PM.
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Old 08-13-2012, 09:33 PM   #8
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Hi-- Thanks for posting the added information and great pics. This trip originally didn't really excite me, but after reading your report and seeing the photos you guys took, we are really looking at it in the next couple of years. Our family love France and are pretty familiar with Paris, but this adds a different perspective. Thanks again for taking the time tpost and providing a first hand perspective.
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Old 08-13-2012, 09:54 PM   #9
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Great pictures!!!! Thanks so much for sharing. I'm hoping to do this trip next summer with my family, so I eagerly await any details from anyone travelling there this year. Thanks again!
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:55 PM   #10
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Great pictures! Thanks so much for posting your Report! Please be sure & post a link to it in the Trip Report Sticky!

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Check out my Southwest Splendors Trip Report! (2008). 5 parts, full of pics & details & impressions!
My Taming the Last Frontier ABD Alaska Trip Report! (2009)! 7 parts, pictures, stories, & more impressions!
Also check out my ABD/DCL Mediterranean Magic Trip Report! (2010)
NOW POSTING! My DIS Unplugged London/Paris/Disneyland Paris Trip Report! (2011)
Now posting my Greek Odyssey Trip Report (2013)
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Old 08-14-2012, 03:57 AM   #11
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I love looking at your pictures Kevin. By the way, we, ALSO, would have liked more time at the Automobile museum, so you might NOT be in the minority!
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