Blogs from France, Europe


Europe » France » Midi-Pyrénées » Saint-Cirq-Lapopie October 18th 2018

Go on you know you want to do it! Say it - Cirq Lapopie - you know it will make you smile. Lapopie makes you grin from ear to ear in a way that saying Milton Keynes or Rotherham doesn't quite do. It is one of those communes in the Lot department of south western France. A member of the Les Plus Beaux Villages de France - the most beautiful villages association. Dotted round France are many of these beautiful villages as well as Villages Etape where local produce is sold and Villages that are flowery . I had read a lot about Saint Cirq Lapopie and decided without doing much research that that was where we were heading to today. It is sited on a steep cliff 100 metres above the river Lot and is ... read more
A glimpse of Saint Cirq Lapopie
The medieval heart
Look what we missed

Europe » France » Languedoc-Roussillon » Castelnaudary October 10th 2018

Day 16 - We are heading up FRance with little idea where to go to next. We have just looked at the map and picked a road heading home. The weather had turned. Now we no longer face 34 degrees of heat but need to put our jumpers and coats on. It is dull and the rain has started to creep in bit by bit. We have very little in the way of plans. We have done what we wanted to do and we have seen what we wanted to see . All in all we did them too quickly. We will hit the north of France too soon at this rate. How about heading for the seaside ? How about heading for the battlefields ? This was the way our conversations were flying between us. ... read more
Foix chateau
Somewhere on the canal de midi
Castlenawdry basin

Europe » France » Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur » Marseille October 9th 2018

Day 3 - France’s second biggest city in the south, couldn’t be more different than the biggest one, Paris. Marseille is a melting pot culture and a vibrant arts scene. It’s beauty mostly doesn’t come from big, prestigious buildings, but rather from small alleyways, colorful houses and centuries of history. It’s the city of Bouillabaisse, a favorite seafood stew. “The Chateau D If” prison castle was the setting for the movie The Count Of Monte Cristo. Cant wait to have dinner tonight, we made reservation at one of the specialty restaurant. Dinner. The service was great. Open bar, had two glasses of wine and two shot of single mall on the rocks. Lol! So awesome ! The night was spent watching and listening to a show with a Filipino band performing to the music of Mowtown. ... read more

Europe » France » Midi-Pyrénées » Mirepoix October 9th 2018

What makes the perfect town? A good well designed empty motorhome spot?. Mirepoix ticked that box. An easy walk into town?. Ticked box again. A lively busy environment ? It certainly delivered on that one. It needs an interesting square full of jaw dropping camera opportunites. Mirepoix was still delivering in bucketloads. Shops including a large Super U ? Of course they were there. A gatehouse ? We found that down a backstreet. And how about a brocante a Sunday tat market? Yes that was there in Mirepoix too. There was nothing missing . We even were treated to an organ grinder and a box of amazing cakes. After a very wet and sleepless night accompanied to the sound of thunder and heavy rain and the light show we had made the initial decision to drive ... read more
some of the old buildings in Mirepoix
Half timbered pastel pink Mirepoix

Europe » France » Lower Normandy » Cherbourg October 8th 2018

Bon jour from Cherbourg France. This is actually our 3rdport in France during the whole vacation, but last night we received a message that we had to turn in our passports for Immigration to see before we would be allowed off the ship in Cherbourg. But it was easier to comply than to argue, so David ran them down to Passenger Services late last night. This morning we got up at 6:30 because we needed to be in the Wheelhouse Bar by 8:00. We got dressed and went to the breakfast buffet in the Horizon Court. Apparently there were more people in the late night nightclubs than the early morning buffet, so we had an easy time of finding a table and had a quiet breakfast. We discovered our dinner waiter (Rolly) was in charge of ... read more

Europe » France » Midi-Pyrénées » Ax-les-Thermes October 8th 2018

So that is us finished with Spain. The heat just got to us and the fact that there seemed little to do in the small towns that we thought would be interesting. A lesson perhaps learned the hard way. Never expect the weather to be exactly what you think it will be and never keep going back to the same country. At some point you just run out of things to see and do. I am not saying that Spain disappointed but it could have done better . C+ rather than the B I had hoped for. So where in the world is Gabby the motorhome. She is on a camping site near to the town of Ax le Therme. It is blooming cold and rather wet. I know it is a mistake to wish for ... read more
Salubel fountain
Cuidid Rodrigo
details from the church at Cuidad Rodrigo

Europe » France » Île-de-France October 7th 2018

Some things never change, and thank goodness Paris is one of them. Gorgeous, dirty, monumental, noisy, charming, crowded, intimate, bustling, smelly, lovely, aggravating, dreamy Paris is a kaleidoscope of sights, sounds and tastes, and I’m getting to see it through the lens of a first-timer, Fae. We are on a quick-and-cheap tour with Riviera Travel, and there have been some hiccups.... Because I’ve been traveling, they were unable to mail me our Eurostar tickets - but neglected to even tell us our ticket numbers, so when we arrived at the London rail station, no one could find us in the system. Two-and-a-half hours of phone calls and repeated queuing netted us two return tickets - WHEW! It’s remarkable to go from central London to Gare du Nord in two+ hours, in quiet, comfortable seats, countryside streaming ... read more
Boarding Eurostar!
First glimpses: Sacre Coeur
First glimpses: place de la Concorde

Europe » France » Brittany » Brest October 7th 2018

Happy Birthday to Alex Chinn! Today our oldest grandson is 14. Today we woke in Baja 508 in Breast France. During the night it had been kind of windy so the channel was bumpy. Also we had further to go than just to Guernsey, so he had to go faster than planned and that also made it bumpier. But we are fine and did not have any seasickness. We did not have any particular plans for today so it was going to be a fairly quiet day. We went down to the dining room for another sit-down breakfast, and Janet was able to get another of her Eggs Benedict. It was a strange breakfast as people kept leaving and being replaced, but it was fine. We heard about a ship which had recently returned from an ... read more

Europe » France » Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur » Marseille October 7th 2018

Arriving direct from the wide avenues we had walked along in Lyon, our first impression of Marseille was that it seemed just a bit more edgy and gritty. The walk from the Gare Saint Charles down to the Vieux Port and La Panier wasn't far. About 1.4 km. Not scary at all (despite a lot of the publicity about the area), just a little more life and movement, much narrower streets, a bit more litter about and a more diverse population. We refined this impression as we moved about some parts of the city but we didn't move too far away. It may be the weather that has been great for most of our week here but that, combined with the life of the city, made Marseille a European city that we could easily live in. ... read more
When you can't plant olive trees in the ground - at Vieux Port
Didn't think it was that hot
Street cleaning team below our window

Europe » France » Brittany October 6th 2018

Theres only so long you can spend by the sea and it was time to head inland and to see what central Brittany had to offer, it is an agricultural landscape, as wherever we drive sweetcorn grows. Used for animal feed we discover, and after scrumping some inedible corns!! It is growing in all the fields, further inland this becomes cabbage and leeks we assume these may be some of the vegetables we have purchased from the local markets, all we have bought has been good and it is great to see a passion for all things French available to purchase, perhaps the UK could learn something from its philosophy! Anyway back to the trip, we have found that the seaside Aires are the hardest to find space in so if in doubt head to a ... read more
Mont St Michel
Mont St Michel

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