Tag: French Riviera

Planning an international getaway is (more than) half the fun

For some international travelers, NOTHING compares to the moment of arrival, when they touch down in a new place and are ready to check out the scene. Others love arriving back HOME, posting their photos on Facebook and Flickr, sharing their travel memories with family and friends. But for me, a pseudo-obsessive Type A, what I love most about travel is the PLANNING that goes into crafting and shaping a trip.

Take my trip to Europe early next week. A wonderfully thoughtful friend in the south of France owns several beautifully furnished Riviera Experience (www.rivieraexperience.com) vacation rental apartments and had a vacancy in one that overlooks the breathtaking Bay of Villefranche. During an e-mail exchange, she invited me to come for a visit. I thought her offer was far too generous and started to decline, but finally graciously accepted, as I’d LOVE to see her and return to one of the most gorgeous places on earth. And for me, a planner to my heart, that’s where the fun begins!

Continue 14 Comments March 13, 2011

Turning a trip abroad into a ‘permanent vacation’

We’ve all read books and watched films about folks (often single women, it seems) who travel to some exotic locale in search of self-discovery, fall in love with this new place, and decide to trade in their not-quite-right lives at home for a new one overseas. You UrbanTravelGirls know the 2003 film “Under the Tuscan Sun” motivated me to move to storybook-perfect Florence, Italy. The Frances Mayes book that inspired the film, Under the Tuscan Sun, has been translated into dozens of languages and prompted countless reader pilgrimages to Mayes’ adopted Tuscan hometown of Cortona.

Author Peter Mayle jump-started the modern expat-exchanges-hectic-urban-life-for-adventure-abroad trend with A Year in Provence, a book that when became an international best-seller when first published in 1989. In it, Mayle chronicled his life as a British expatriate in Ménerbes, a town in this gorgeous part of southern France. This former London ad executive and his wife traveled to Provence on vacation but eventually took the plunge, relocating completely from the UK to France. And once his books caught fire and made him rich—no doubt inspiring legions of folks with visions of living abroad—Mayle became the patron saint of reinventing oneself in a foreign land.

But when does an UrbanTravelGirl decide that a mere vacation doesn’t do it, that she’d rather pull up stakes and actually MOVE to another country and build a life for herself there instead of here (wherever that happens to be)? ….

Continue 14 Comments December 21, 2010

The joys of traveling solo—Part Une

For some folks, as the old song by Three Dog Night goes, “one is the loneliest number.” They can’t stomach the idea of dining alone and think that going to a movie theater or party without a “plus-one” (famously played out on an episode of “Sex and the City”) will brand them as permanent losers.

How sad. They’ll never understand the visceral joy many of us find in traveling solo.

I again experienced this fabulous freedom during my recent return trip to the super-charming village of Villefranche-sur-Mer on the Côte D’Azur—better known to many Americans as the “French Riviera.” Talk about a fabulous place for a chica to get away by herself. I’ll chat more later about this fab week-long adventure… but in the meantime, continue reading to view a couple photos that will make you drool. Is this place paradise OR WHAT?

Continue 9 Comments May 8, 2009

Ringing in my fourth decade in (French) style

I don’t usually get hyped up about birthdays, but it’s not everyday you turn 40. And since I’ll take any excuse to take a foreign trip, I wanted to ring in this Jan. 4 somewhere abroad. Of course, I love Italy to death, am newly fascinated with Greece after stopping there twice with my mom during a 12-day cruise in November… but somehow, my mind kept drifting back to France. Paris is my all-time favorite city, but I felt like I needed to kick off this new year somewhere new. Different, yet romantic and ideally, Mediterranean.

Those who know me well realize that while I enjoy traveling with family members and friends, I’m equally fond of setting off on my own. And from the start, this 40th birthday getaway felt like one I needed to take alone. I’m thrilled about turning 40 (even though I must admit, it feels strange to type out the number!), and see the start of my fourth decade as a great time for introspection. It’s probably my last best chance to figure out who and what I want to be when I grow up. Do-overs have pretty much run out at this point, so I thought two weeks in a gorgeous place surrounded by folks who’ve long ago mastered that whole “work-life balance” thing was just what the doctor ordered.

Continue 6 Comments January 6, 2009

Subscribe to the latest posts from UrbanTravelGirl!

Google Translator

    Translate to:

Recent Posts

April 2016
« Aug    


Recent Comments