Author Topic: Negotiating the ferry and France...  (Read 8398 times)

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #50 on: July 06, 2009, 12:08:27 am »
Hope you enjoy Chamonix.  Do make sure you take the kids on the Summer Luge.  :)

Oh yes, great fun - but do remember that "Freinez!" is French for "Brake!" not "Duck!" - unlike my mate Ben when we were there many years ago. The braking mechanism is operated by pulling back on the lever. Pushing forward, as you do when you duck, just makes you go faster...

On the positive side, Ben learnt several new French curse words from the person on the luge in front of him.

Annecy is also well worth a visit while you're in the area - in fact, Annecy-Chamonix is an outstandingly beautiful cycling route (including the Col de la Croix Fry - a challenge but not one of the tougher Alpine passes - not to be confused with the evil Croix de Fer).

Apart from that, I second the recommendation for the toll-roads. They all have perfect surfaces and are well worth a few extra quid.

I know it's too late this time, but I would definitely recommend the tunnel next time. It's not just the crossing itself where you save time (30 minutes compared to over an hour [IIRC] on the ferry) but there are trains every 15 minutes, which means turnover is much higher, you can check in later, queues are fewer and shorter, boarding and disembarkation are much quicker (not least because unlike the ferry you stay in your vehicle once you have boarded) and the whole experience is generally much more pleasant. Having used the tunnel a few times, I don't think I could ever go back to the ferry - the only thing I miss about the ferry is standing on the deck and feeling the sea spray on my face.

Yes, the tunnel occasionally closes due to fires and whatnot, but the ferry also occasionally closes due to French farmers and whatnot.

d.


Thanks.  I suppose the ferry is part of a first big boat experience for the minis really.  We're hoping to do the Mont Blanc tunnel for a day jaunt into Italy.
Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.

Oscar's dad

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #51 on: July 06, 2009, 11:25:41 am »
We're hoping to do the Mont Blanc tunnel for a day jaunt into Italy.

Do it if you have a chance.  Find a way of impressing on your kids they are underneath a MASSIVE mountain, quite thought provoking. 

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #52 on: July 06, 2009, 01:03:09 pm »
We prefer the ferry as it gives a sensible break in the journey and a time to rest (or wake up  ;D) before starting the European leg of the trip.

We're hoping to do the Mont Blanc tunnel for a day jaunt into Italy.

From memory there's a warehouse style booze store just over the border in Courmayeur.  A lot cheaper than the rest of the shops in that village.  We normally stock up there.

Oscar's dad

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #53 on: July 06, 2009, 03:37:50 pm »
We prefer the ferry as it gives a sensible break in the journey and a time to rest (or wake up  ;D) before starting the European leg of the trip.

We're hoping to do the Mont Blanc tunnel for a day jaunt into Italy.

From memory there's a warehouse style booze store just over the border in Courmayeur.  A lot cheaper than the rest of the shops in that village.  We normally stock up there.

All this sage advice from a guy who professes to hate all things foreign yet is clearly a more seasoned traveller than Alan Whicker and Judith Chalmers put together   ;D

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #54 on: July 06, 2009, 04:01:36 pm »
It's only when you go away that you realise how pleasant home is  ;)

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #55 on: July 06, 2009, 04:41:04 pm »


[/quote]

Thanks.  I suppose the ferry is part of a first big boat experience for the minis really.  We're hoping to do the Mont Blanc tunnel for a day jaunt into Italy.
[/quote]

An interesting jaunt, but beware the exits off the motorway on the Italian side as they don't all have accompanying junctions to get back on, and some only let you back on in the direction you were going. I speak with some experience (of a near 20 mile loop to turn around!) Plus there is a toll every time you come off/on.

LEE

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #56 on: July 06, 2009, 04:45:54 pm »
I suppose the ferry is part of a first big boat experience for the minis really.  We're hoping to do the Mont Blanc tunnel for a day jaunt into Italy.

Can I suggest "On Days Like These" by Matt Monro on your car stereo at that point?



clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #57 on: July 06, 2009, 05:28:07 pm »
Only if he has a Lamborghini Miura and, in any case, not into the tunnel... :-\
Getting there...

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #58 on: July 06, 2009, 06:16:52 pm »
 :)

Italian job trivia diversion...
(click to show/hide)


I wonder what a round trip, around Mont Blanc via Grand Saint Bernhard pass/Matigny would be like?
Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #59 on: July 06, 2009, 09:45:07 pm »
I wonder what a round trip, around Mont Blanc via Grand Saint Bernhard pass/Matigny would be like?

I think I've done that  :)

Quite pleasant.

Oscar's dad

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #60 on: July 06, 2009, 10:11:11 pm »
I wonder what a round trip, around Mont Blanc via Grand Saint Bernhard pass/Matigny would be like?

I think I've done that  :)

Quite pleasant.

You would have wouldn't you?   ::-)   ;D

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #61 on: July 06, 2009, 10:35:50 pm »
And although you pop through Switzerland for that you don't need a vignette :)

Oscar's dad

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #62 on: July 06, 2009, 10:42:57 pm »
And although you pop through Switzerland for that you don't need a vignette :)

Huh?  Olive oil mixed with white wine vinegar?

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #63 on: July 06, 2009, 11:54:43 pm »
And although you pop through Switzerland for that you don't need a vignette :)

Huh?  Olive oil mixed with white wine vinegar?

It's the Swiss equivalent of the French National Anthem - the Mayonnaise.

frankly frankie

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #64 on: July 07, 2009, 08:03:48 am »
the only thing I miss about the ferry is standing on the deck and feeling the sea spray on my face.

Last few ferries I've been on, that hasn't been an option.
They'll be painting over the glass in the windows next  :(

Quote from: andyoxon
I wonder what a round trip, around Mont Blanc via Grand Saint Bernhard pass/Matigny would be like?

On a bicycle, some of it is a bit main-road-ey.  OK, but not the most pleasant circuit imaginable, in between the passes which are all good of course.  And you don't generally get good views of Mont Blanc itself except round the Chamonix area.

Start here Petit St Bernard and follow the 'Circuit de Mont Blanc' links until you get back to the same page ... via cols Gd St Bernard, Forclaz, Montets, Saisies, Roselend.
It's not dark yet but it's getting there.

LEE

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #65 on: July 07, 2009, 09:47:53 am »
And although you pop through Switzerland for that you don't need a vignette :)

Huh?  Olive oil mixed with white wine vinegar?

You ignoramus, it's a posh Ice-Cream dessert.

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #66 on: July 07, 2009, 12:55:25 pm »
And although you pop through Switzerland for that you don't need a vignette :)

Nutty, I was looking at the swiss m'way pass thread.  How is that one avoids the vignette/vinegarette/vinaigrette/vienetta* in this case?

*del as appropr.
Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #67 on: July 07, 2009, 02:52:10 pm »
And although you pop through Switzerland for that you don't need a vignette :)

Nutty, I was looking at the swiss m'way pass thread.  How is that one avoids the vignette/vinegarette/vinaigrette/vienetta* in this case?

*del as appropr.

From memory this was the route?  Google Maps

It doesn't go on the Swiss motorways, therefore you don't need the sticker.  At the border when they check your passport (don't forget to take them ;)) they ask where you're going, so just tell them Italy.


Although the Google Maps says it's a 2:47 journey, I think we turned it into a day trip.  No point rushing.

andym

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #68 on: July 08, 2009, 12:31:27 am »
At the border when they check your passport (don't forget to take them ;)) they ask where you're going, so just tell them Italy.
I *believe* Switzerland is Schengen now (also Liechtenstein later this year), so probably no border check, but still advise taking passports anyway.
AndyM

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #69 on: July 09, 2009, 10:00:52 am »
...  One other point on SatNav on mainland Europe - if travelling in France or Switzerland, make sure there's no Speed Camera POIs installed, unless you want a fine and the device confiscated.

Was just wondering if this is ever acted on at all by the authorities, because presumably all UK sold Sat Nav systems have camera locations installed in the software?  

Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #70 on: July 09, 2009, 10:31:00 am »
...  One other point on SatNav on mainland Europe - if travelling in France or Switzerland, make sure there's no Speed Camera POIs installed, unless you want a fine and the device confiscated.

Was just wondering if this is ever acted on at all by the authorities, because presumably all UK sold Sat Nav systems have camera locations installed in the software?  


Speed camera POIs are only illegal in Switzerland not the rest of Europe. However if your GPS has an active radar or laser detector fitted this is most definitely illegal throughout Europe.

Whether the Swiss police will actually check your GPS probably depends on how petty or bored they are
It didn't look at all like that in the photographs

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #71 on: July 09, 2009, 11:12:38 am »
Whether the Swiss police will actually check your GPS probably depends on how petty or bored they are

Well, they're Swiss aren't they? ;)

d.

andym

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #72 on: July 09, 2009, 07:14:05 pm »
Speed camera POIs are also illegal in France.
Would be a bit daft having such things in your SatNav when there's no reciprocal agreement with UK to forward speeding tickets, but then getting an on the spot fine ;)
Of course, I'm sure nobody here would speed anyway :)
AndyM

Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #73 on: July 09, 2009, 07:34:53 pm »
Speed camera POIs are also illegal in France.
Would be a bit daft having such things in your SatNav when there's no reciprocal agreement with UK to forward speeding tickets, but then getting an on the spot fine ;)
Of course, I'm sure nobody here would speed anyway :)


andym are you sure it's not systems that actually detect speed camera in real time that are illegal?   AFAIA all Sat Nav's display speed camera POIs(?), but presumably there is the option to turn them off in the preferences settings...
Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.

andym

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Re: Negotiating the ferry and France...
« Reply #74 on: July 09, 2009, 07:52:56 pm »
Mine certainly doesn't have speedcamera POIs, but has the ability to add them.  I assumed most are like this.  If not then it must be something new.  I'd be very surprised if Garmin, TomTom et al ship with French/Swiss speedcam POIs. Active/Passive Detectors/Jammers are illegal pretty much everywhere.
AndyM