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July 25th 2016
Published: July 1st 2017
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Today we drove to the lovely Sauternes area of France. On our way we stopped in La Reole for a walk around and a cup of coffee. The historical village is built along the Garonne River. There is a 12th century town hall built by Richard the Lionheart, which is the oldest in France.
Almost every village we have visited in our time in France seems deserted. The locals keep their shutters closed during the day to keep their homes cooler. Plus we seldom see any locals so they are either sleeping or holidaying further south!!
From La Reole we continued south on our road trip to Mazeres where we visited Chateau de Roquetaillade. This well preserved castle was built by King Edward 1st in the 11th century. It has been the home to the same family for more than 700 years. It is decorated with period furniture, chimneys, and tapestries. The kitchen is still in everyday use by the family. It was lined with beautiful 18th century copper pots and pans. Most of the interior rooms have been restored with original decorative wall paintings. Unfortunately, we were unable to take photos inside the castle and the tour was in French! After our tour we enjoyed a lovely picnic on the castle grounds.
Then it was off to find some Sauternes wineries. We passed chateau after chateau along our drive. They were all so amazing to see. You never know if they are being lived in or abandoned because of the closed shutters.
The village of Sauternes has a "house of wines" where you you can try different wines from the area. We visited there and tried a wide variety of Sauternes wines. They are sweet white chilled wine that is not solely a dessert wine, but nice served as an aperitif or with a very spicy or sweet dishes.
On our travel home we stopped in the town of Cadillac where we viewed the 17th century Castle Cadillac. It is a leading example of French style architecture. In the 19th century it was turned into a womens prison.

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