Blogs from Nord-Pas de Calais, France, Europe - page 4

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Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais September 1st 2016

We were on the road by 8am with everything ready packed into Tandy the night before. What a gorgeous morning to set out. Positively autumnal with a mist rolled in low across the fields behind the house. Something rather lovely about setting off under a blue sky for even more sunshine (hopefully), A good thing we left ourselves extra time to get down to the Chunnel terminal at Folkstone as the motorways were very busy and we encountered several traffic jams caused by what is known on BBC traffic reports as “sheer volume of traffic”. Planned route went down the M42 /M40 but we switched to the M6 / M1 as the M42 was totally clogged up. The M1 wasn’t too bad but the M25 anticlockwise was like a car park in several sections. By the ... read more
The M20 bridge which is now only half a bridge
And onto the Chunnel train
St Omer canal

Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais » Lille July 29th 2016

Sorry no blog last night. It was a long day - up early and home late....So, today will be a rest and recovery day, starting with yesterday's blog. After a couple of days on bikes, our butts were begging us to spare them the bike seats. So, we headed out early (ish) for the north east city of Lille. Getting out of the city took a while with getting slightly lost combined with some road closures.....but then we found the A1 (not the sauce) and headed north. We played a car game of "country license plates" and found nearly all of Europe's plates (Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Luxembourg). The highways here are A, N and D and work the opposite of cup sizes (A is the biggest and D is very small). We made ... read more
Careful!
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Too big!

Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais » Calais June 30th 2016

And so to home - for the second time in a month. We observed as we drove to Le Crotoy that last time we had been here, on the 2nd of June, it was also raining though it was colder then and I didn't take much notice of anything that time around as I was rather poorly with my nasty virus. A long driving day today up from the Loire Valley to the Normandy coast on the Somme Estuary. Through the fields full of grain crops waiting for sunshine to be harvested. a little later than normal this year I'm sure and a lot of fields looked as if they have been badly damaged by heavy rain. The roads are straight, sometimes stretching in a long line as far as the eye can see with not ... read more
160629 Le Crotoy (44)
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Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais June 12th 2016

Great advantage to travelling to the Dover on a Sunday is no traffic holdups. Really rather a wet drive and felt rather sorry as we got near London as the Queen was having a 90th Birthday street party on the mall and we were driving through heavy rain. At least it was much warmer than on the first attempt at a holiday, 11 days ago. Arrived beautifully early at Dover, nicely in time to go pretty well straight onto the earlier ferry. Not even time to eat our sandwiches (looked forward to my egg butty all the way down fron hone as unable to eat the last lot which Bob had so carefully made). We were in Calais by early afternoon and at our Campsite (Chateau Camping de la Bien Assise) within the hour. Last stayed ... read more
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Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais » Calais April 22nd 2016

Day 1- So for a first day it was eventful. The weather wasn't too bad at home, with just heavy rain. But by the time we cycled over the hill and down onto the marsh, the winds had really picked up. This made it a slow grind, until my rear tyre blew out! Just outside of Lydd, and only 10 miles in. I had all the kit for most repairs, but I'd never experienced an exploding tyre so had nothing to fix it. So a quick call for help to Richard, and a new tyre and tube were delivered. While Rich was sorting the tyre from Activ, I replaced the tube and gingerly pumped it unto 30 psi, which was just enough for we to walk the bike to Lydd, but I wasn't going to chance ... read more
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Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais » Dunkerque September 26th 2015

l'Une dernière étape avant le retour à la maison demain... toubib oblige... Nous continuons à longer la côte tout en passant par Le Touquet, Boulogne sur Mer (un petit salut argentin à San Martin, vu qu'il est enterré ici...), nous évitons Calais car tout est bien bloqué par la gendarmerie vu la situation des réfugiés... et tout doucement approchons de la frontière... Mais avant cela nous nous arrêtons encore à Etaples où les musées naturels sont les poissonneries... Un régal pour les yeux mais ce sera aussi un régal pour notre assiette de ce soir !!! Nous passons aussi par les Caps Gris Nez et Blanc Nez de même que par la Pointe aux oies. De beaux paysages... Nous approchons de plus près le Cap Gris Nez car le parking du Blanc Nez ne permet pas ... read more
Homard européen
bouquet : pas pour rien : 39 € le kg !
ah !

Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais » Lille September 14th 2015

France has never really appealed to me as a country to visit, yet I've seen some beautiful photos online of different parts of the country. I've heard reviews that you must be good at speaking French and not many people will speak English may have had some influence in me not wanting to explore this European country. A poor excuse since France is a neighbour to the UK making a daytrip possible. However, I decided to give France a try on my return from Belgium since I needed to catch a ferry back home from Dunkirk. My manager at work suggested I take a look at Lille, as its only about 80km away from Dunkirk. I found a hotel outside of the city centre with free parking and good motorway connections, and it was only a ... read more
Column of the Goddess
Cathedral of Lille
Beauitful architecture

Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais September 12th 2015

Pozieres Just north of Stanthorpe Qld there is a town called Pozieres. The town adopted that name after WW1 when so many Australians experienced harrowing war and suffered casualties at the town’s namesake in the Somme France. So when we were driving through from the town of Albert to Arras it was compelling to stop and look. This town and its surrounding district was the scene of 3 extended and costly campaigns to regain 3 specific targets From German invaders in 1916. There are many British cemeteries and memorials in the surrounding area including the famous Thiepval monument – the biggest monument to British war dead in the world as well as numerous cemeteries and smaller but significant monuments. These sites attract many visitors every day - mostly patriotic citizens visiting sites commemorating their respective country's ... read more
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Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais September 11th 2015

Australian War Memorials Somme France Long before we reached Amiens in the Somme region of France we became aware of various commemorations Au Coeur de la Grande Guerre- of the Great War 1914 to 1918. We were headed toward Villers-Bretonneux where we knew there is an Australian War memorial. But the full extent of that war on France is hard to comprehend. The front line moved from time to time. But it stretched all the way across France and Belgium, from the Atlantic coast around Dunkerque and Zeebrugge right down to Nancy and Mulhouse at the Swiss border. As the crow flies that is over 500 klm. The way the line wobbled around it may well have been 700 to 1000 klms long at times. That’s a long line to man. In the northern parts of ... read more
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Europe » France » Nord-Pas de Calais September 11th 2015

Monash A True Australian Hero From the worst to the best Superhuman bravery on the part of Australians, extraordinary and needless loss of life, and incapable military leadership have been at the centre of what my father and others told me about WW1 ( in which Australia and other nations friendly to Britain and France came the defence of France and repel an anticipated invasion of Britain by German forces between 1914 to 1918) While visiting Gallipoli and northern France I have been reminded of those childhood lessons and my observations here have amplified those simple messages Simple messages which must have resonated like a clanking bell between 1914 and 1918, in the hearts and minds of families of lost ones. At The Australian Corps Memorial Park – a little distance away from the Villers-Bretonneux Military ... read more
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