My husband and I leave a cruise ship in Venice on Wednesday morning, May 30. We want to be in La Roque in the Dordogne region sometime Friday, June 1 where we will share a house with friends until Friday morning, June 8. Then we leave La Roque to stay with my husband's cousin in Turin on Saturday, June 9. (We could get there Friday, but I thought it would be a rush from La Roque to Turin in one day, or at least a very long day - yes?)

I would like advice on getting from Venice to a place to rent a car for the week in Dordogne and on getting from wherever we rent the car (Lyon? Toulouse?) to Turin (by train or plane).

That is, we are considering various combinations of flying or train riding from Venice to Lyon or Toulouse, and from Lyon or Toulouse back to northern Italy, in Turin.

We are considering flying from Venice to Lyon (About $233 1-way, each person, 3hr travel time) then spending time in Lyon and driving a rental car from Lyon to La Roque (travel time? spend a night en route? or two nights in Lyon - both are appealing). If we fly from Venice to Lyon and from Lyon to Turin, the open-jaw tickets are about $300 each person, both legs.

We are also considering the train from Venice to Lyon. It would be much less expensive than flying, but very long. I hear the trains are great, but I don't know the route or the scenery. I think then we'd have time only to see Lyon at night, spend the night, and have breakfast there? We could rent a car in Lyon and drive to La Roque (drive time?). Or we could take the train to Toulouse, rent a car there and drive (about two hours?) to La Roque.

We like cities and the countryside. Everything we read is appealing. We like museums, architecture, walks, industry, agriculture, picnics, markets, castles, food and wine. (Of course we'll be visiting the cave paintings in the Dordogne area.) I lack information on the time and distance from Lyon to La Roque, and I feel dizzy with the information I do have about the rest!

I would really appreciate any information, ideas, advice and opinions.

Thank you!