My wife and I (midddle-aged) will be in France in the first week of November, spending time first in Paris. We want to spend time in Provence as well, heading from Paris to Avignon. However, we're thinking of also spending two or three days in Arles.
We're from Canada and friends here (possibly with too little direct knowledge of Provence in mid autumn) think that Arles may be a bit dead and indifferent to tourists by November. Any truth to this? And if any, to what degree is it the case?
Can we have a good time in Arles in mid November?
Nobody coming onto this Europe travel forum knows Arles very well, eh?
What are your interests ?
Thanks for asking, Peter. Well, local ways of life (including farming, outdoor markets, etc), the life of the general populace, architectural and archaeological sites, local music, galleries, museums, the countryside. Walks/hikes. Local bus routes that can make for cheap loop tours (even without English-speaking tour guides).
Some museums, etc will have restricted hours, but many other attractions are open year round.
Arles is quite small and not as interesting as Nimes or Montpellier.
Arles, Nimes and Montpellier are all possible places to stay in the area.
Montpellier is the most active, even in November. It is the regional capital and has the best train/tram/bus networks in South France.
I'd do some background reading here :
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
It's said that if one wants to get a feel for "working-class Provence" than Arles is a good place to go. We have never visited Provence before, so it sounded like an interesting destination (though we plan to base ourselves in Avignon).
No one interested in the common folks of Provence?
I can tell you that much - Avignon is lovely. I was there in summer though... not sure what the place is like in winter.