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Europe » France » Picardy » Saint-Valery-sur-Somme October 9th 2015

So this was it. Our last night in France. We had booked our last night in the campsite Le Walric within walking distance of the seaside town of Saint Valery. We needed somewhere to while away our last Sunday. Far enough away from Calais and the Chunnel but not too far that we would struggle to get there for our train. If we were over an hour away we knew we would have no problems with migrants. We knew if we stayed closer we would be subject to more rigourous checks. The journey was pleasant enough along some pretty little french back roads. we were heading for the coast. The campsite was easy to find and was yet another ACSI site 16 euros which compares much better than campsites in Britain. Reception was very friendly and ... read more
The Somme estuary
medieval gateway
The somme estuary

Europe » France » Picardy » Amiens September 22nd 2015

Petit tour en Normandie… Un rendez-vous chez le toubib pour JJ tarde à se faire, alors pour que le temps passe plus vite, nous prenons le chemin des écoliers pour nous rendre jusqu’où ses forces nous le permettrons mais surtout jusqu’à la veille du prochain rendez-vous… Autant se distraire et se reposer quand nécessaire et passer son temps agréablement au lieu de se morfondre devant un agenda… C’est ainsi que samedi matin nous prenons la route direction la Normandie… Nous avions prévu une escapade en Bretagne mais le temps est trop court pour que chose se fasse…. Nous prenons alors une route qui m’amuse à cause des noms cocasses de certains villages… C’est ainsi que nous passons par : Wé, Mal Campée, Tournes, La Bouteille, Mon Plaisir et j’en passe… Nous arrivons dans l’après-midi dans les ... read more
Carignan
La Somme, tout à côté du camping...
Mairie d'Amiens

Europe » France » Picardy » Ault September 19th 2015

Ault Picardie 19thSeptember 2015 To Veules les Roses and Fecamp Why stop here? Well its that time of day – that’s why. After driving for maybe an hour – its time to find a campsite. No need to drive far to see something different here. Well we had no idea what was in store. You have heard of the White Cliffs of Dover. Fantastic to see white chalky cliffs on the sea and hey stretch for about15 kilometers. WOW Well the Cote d’Albatre ( Alabaster Coast ) stretches about 130 klms. Similar limestone cliffs with bits falling into the sea, air brushing the water colour to lighter shades of blue grey and green. Along this coast we were treated to an unexpected smorgasbord of eye candy sea scapes. Over 3 days we wandered along the Cote ... read more
Normanby Ault  (2)
Normanby Ault  (3)
Normanby Ault  (6)

Europe » France » Picardy » Peronne August 5th 2015

Wednesday 5 August 2015 Hard to believe this day has come so suddenly. Today we returned our Peugeot 2008, our friend and companion for the past three months. We're not sure how Polly is feeling but we do know she'll have to a quaint herself with new owners. Perhaps that means a change of language. We have divulged ourselves of all the luxury items we needed to save a euro or two by having our own in-room early morning coffee and breakfast. A nice parcel has been left for the house keeping staff with a letter thanking them for their efforts and hoping they can make use of our portable kitchen. This Premiere Classe Hotel has been exceptional. We thanked the duty manager who informed us that this hotel is a new generation. Hope they get ... read more
Peronne
Peronne
Peronne

Europe » France » Picardy May 21st 2015

Sunday 17 May 2015 Today was for driving from our accommodation near Beauvais to Rouen. This Is a relatively short distance so we took the advice of our knowledgeable host and decided to stop and explore the village of Gerberoy en route. Gerberoy completes a triangle formed with Amiens and Beauvais. Our trusty GPS friend kept us on the back roads as we left gently sloping fields of green crops growing right up to the road edge and headed into wooded hills. The fresh spring green all around us on this sunny day made the drive a real pleasure. We passed through many villages and soon were approaching Gerberoy. Before we entered the little town we found a handy car parking area under shady trees, already occupied by a number of vehicles. With some expert reversing ... read more
Gerberoy
Gerberoy
Gerberoy

Europe » France » Picardy » Beauvais May 18th 2015

Friday 15 May 2015 What a wonderful sleep. We chose this B & B for its quietness, location near to Charles de Gaulle Airport, and its welcoming atmosphere. All boxes had a tick. The next test was the breakfast. Wow! We started with the biggest cup of wonderful coffee followed by fresh pastries, locally produced yoghurt, a variety of breads and home made jams, and little cakes. Oh the waistline, but then again there will be plenty of exercise. We enjoyed our breakfast with a couple from Limoges. One of the objectives of the trip this time was to immerse ourselves, wherever possible, in the local culture. At breakfast time it was getting a real workout. We'll be great speakers of French by day three. Beauvais was the nearest large town to our accommodation, about 14 ... read more
Beauvais Cathedral
Beauvais
Beauvais

Europe » France » Picardy » Beauvais May 16th 2015

Thursday 14 May 2015 The planning for this wonderful holiday probably started while driving through the Loire four years ago. Today it was underway. The journey really started in Alexandra, Central Otago, New Zealand two days ago when we turned everything off, locked the doors and drove to Christchurch for our flight to Paris. Long haul flights are something to be endured, especially when you live so far from the places you want to visit on the other side of the world. With thirty one hours of travel behind us we landed at Charles de Galle Airport, bleary eyed but full of excitement. Ten out of ten to French Immigration. Our passports were stamped and returned in about thirty seconds. It's that honest Kiwi look, you know. Bags collected, phone call to Eurolease for a pick ... read more

Europe » France » Picardy » Amiens May 10th 2015

This morning I checked out of my Bayeux hotel and hit the road. My first stop was the little seaside town of Arromanches which is in the middle of the Gold Beach, one of the beaches assigned to the British on D-Day. The Allies built an artificial harbor there that was affectionately called Port Winston. They were therefore able to land supplies even though the Germans had made the usual ports unusable. The extent of Port Winston is impressive and I could clearly see the remains of much of the old artificial breakwater (see picture). Next I visited Juno Beach which was where the Canadians landed and the Canadian military cemetery (see picture). We often forget the Canadian contribution to the war and the fact that they declared war on Germany two years before the United ... read more
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Europe » France » Picardy April 14th 2015

Sunday. Today we had a return to warm, sunny weather, and we set off for a day touring the Loire Valley. First of all we visited the Château Chenonçeau, which bridges the Cher River, and is set in magnificent grounds which include formal and informal gardens, and forest. This château has an interesting history, and the grounds are very peaceful if one walks into the forest a bit. We then proceeded to Amboise for lunch, followed by a tour of the very impressive château/castle which overlooks and dominates the town. What remains is only a fraction of the original great fortress, but includes some amazing features, such as the chapel overhanging the walls, the broad spiral ramps inside the towers, built so that the king/nobles could ride their horses and bring carriages up from the entrances ... read more
Amiens Cathedral
Château d'Amboise
le Clos Lucé

Europe » France » Picardy » Beauvais January 16th 2015

Yes, I confess, it's NOT Beauvais I live in, Beauvais is actually rather nice town. This tiny little village I ended up in is called Formerie. It's about a half an hours drive from Beauvais, during which you drive through ten or so equally tiny little villages. And a funny thing, you never see any people in those villages! What do the french people do? Don't they ever go outside, for jogging, walking a dog, anything? And believe me when I say; the french houses are not that comfortable that you would enjoy staying inside all the time! Okey, I'm a skandinavian, in other words I am used to good isolation, central heating and triple glazed windows, something the french seem to be missing completely. And I mean it's not excactly warm here in winter! And ... read more
grosbois
the one to the left is mine
the Cat!




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