Driving between England and Spain

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mickthemaverick
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Driving between England and Spain

Post by mickthemaverick »

Over the summer my mate in Spain, near Murcia, is coming over for some English summer treats, and to escape the oven time, so I will fly out and drive back with him and his dog, and reverse the process on his return to Spain. My approach to this type of trip is to plan the route, book the overnight stops, book the ferries etc etc. However he has been looking on local ex-pat forums and it seems there is a preference for winging it. Stopping when you want and finding accomodation and meals etc as you feel like it. Also just queuing at the ferry terminal for the next boat. Any thoughts?

Also we are debating whether to take a relatively straight route through France via Bordeaux and Le Mans for example or a more easterly curve round via Montpelier and Reims etc. So I thought it might be useful to gain the thoughts of our members who travel those routes? All suggestions and advice is welcome :-D
Gibbo2286
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Re: Driving between England and Spain

Post by Gibbo2286 »

My only road trip to Spain was by coach from Bristol, the route taken was Bristol - Southampton - Cherbourg overnight ferry - some autoroute skirting Paris then on to Carcassonne (where we were treated like merde by the local restaurant staff because we weren't fluent in French, a hotel overnight but I can't remember quite where then on to L'Escala on the Costa Brava. L'Escala was just a sandy beach at the time with one newly built hotel managed by a Scotsman.
Crossing the border into France on the way back the coach was stopped by motorcycle cops who demanded tax on the fuel bought in Spain, in cash or the coach would be impounded. :shock:
An enjoyable nine days for £35 each at the time, it was the coach operators first trial run.
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Paul-R
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Re: Driving between England and Spain

Post by Paul-R »

I retain a soft spot for Andorra as a stopover or even just a pass through since the seventies when I first went there with my parents and brother. And there's the cheap fuel as well of course!

I would then go from Toulouse to Orleans. There's a long section of Autoroute there and most of it is free. I found it a very nice drive a few years back and it does help to make it a relaxing drive - I'm assuming cruise control BTW. On the peage sections, being a mean bugger, I would use the old RN roads but you might have a different imperative.

I don't see Reims as being part of a straight line and so from Orleans I would use my standard route to Calais. A lot of free AutoRoute and AutoRoute standard dual carriageway. Orleans (D2020) - Artenay (D954, N1154 (care speed cameras)) - Chartres (N123, N1154, D828) - Dreux (N12, N154, A154 - towards Rouen. I take the free D6015 road through but you could use the A13 Peage and D18E. Once through Rouen and over the Seine the N28/A28 is free to Abbeville. There I make the decision whether or not to pay for the A16 (about €6 - €7 from memory) depending on how late I am! Perversely I enjoy the old RN1 to Boulogne but even I pay for a short section of A16 from Hesdin l'Abbe to avoid going down into Boulogne.

As far as going through Spain I would think your friend is better informed than me but I've always been impressed by the free Autovias and we even stayed overnight in one of the service area hotels. some ten years ago. I've noticed that some of the toll AP Autopistas have dropped their tolls which could influence route choice.
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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving between England and Spain

Post by mickthemaverick »

Thanks Paul, I've added that to our contemplation pot :-D