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Published: June 25th 2017
To break up the long drive from Logrono to Pessac (just outside the city of Bordeaux) we stopped at San Sebastian. This place is an outstanding display of affluence with splashes of the rich at every turn. The long and beautiful beach was suitably well populated on this very warm Sunday. A number were out there catching waves on the not too challenging surf and having a great time of it.
The drive through the valleys and mountains was gorgeous with roads sweeping across deep valleys and breathtaking views Then off to France. After negotiating the roads through San Sebastion to the border we stopped at a lovely wayside stop for lunch, where Liz was promptly locked into a toilet due to a fault door lock. Not a good start in a new country but Rob to the rescue was able to release her from this predicament.
First lesson to learn in France was that being a Sunday EVERYTHING was closed. We eventually found a restaurant for dinner but it was not easy (and it wasn't a Maccas though that was going to be plan B).
Monday was spent in the lovely town of Bordeaux. We caught the
tram which took us to the far end of the city and we walked down. The deal here was great. For only 5€ you get all day parking for the car adjacent to the tram station and tram rides for 2 for an hour. This took us all the way from Pessac to the far end of Bordeaux - maybe 10 kms distance. The Cite du Vin is a very well established centre for everything wine. Exhibitions, videos, tours with tasting and endless wine shopping are all there. It's obviously well patronised as prices are pretty high. What is impressive is the training facilities that are bringing new young people into the business of protecting and enhancing the Bordeaux wine "brand".
The city itself is well laid out and very attractive with it's 18th Century buildings predominating and making great use of the estuary port asset. The standard of workmanship and maintenance is noticeably higher than what we have been seeing with little sign of things being left unfinished or rough.
We had a brilliant day next day with a drive to Arcochon and the Dune du Pyla on a hot sunny day. This is maybe a 150
metre high sand dunes which after a notable climb in the heat and on hot sand provides an outstanding view of the Bassin de .... Not far from Arcochon. After a bite to eat we explored the nearby heights where the fabulous old houses of the area nestle among the trees. A rickety tower provides great views over the town.
On our way back to the apartment we found some seafood dinner of shrimps and oysters caught fresh. These were served up in a restaurant in Port Laross, one of seven ports along the bay between Arcochon and Pessac where we stayed. Fabulous food in unique surroundings capping off a memorable day in the French summer.
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