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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Provence Alpes Côte d'Azur, France

Sep 4, 2018 - Roussillon... the reddest earth, the bluest sky

Sept.4/18 Oh it was hard to leave our peaceful pretty B&B this morning, not only the setting but the company as we really enjoyed our hosts, Veerle and Nico from Belgium and great conversation with a visiting couple, also originally Belgian but living in Stuttgart, Germany whose little 8 year old boy kept us entertained with his football knowledge. We wound down the hill from Bonnieux and across the country roads and vineyards to Roussillon, and what a great hike it was. As we pass over the hill separating the 2 areas we enter this...

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Sep 3, 2018 - Another day another climb

A lovely breakfast on the terrace puts us in a little bit of a lazy mood, but..when in Europe one must walk or suffer the perils of our eating habits.. so our boots we don and take a steep rocky forced march up in the hills to le Foret du Cedres . This is a national park around a 120 year old planting of Moroccan cedar trees to prevent erosion on the hills. These are slow growing and therefore small cedars, prompting us snobby western Canadians to say " That's not a forest... that's a Christmas tree farm!" They are however quite unique,...

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Sep 2, 2018 - Market Day and Pleasantly Lost in Provence

Sept.2/18 A bus to Nimes, a train to Avignon and a bus to Apt bring us to the Luberon of Provence in just 5 hours. Apt is a larger working town, not terribly attractive. But we have a lovely B&B here with another charming hostess, and we have booked an extra night here in order to see the Saturday market, the biggest in Provence, and it's fabulous. Hundreds of people, colourful stalls galore, street musicians in the squares, and great people watching. Well worth the extra day. We were happy however to leave the town and head for the hills...

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Jul 5, 2018 - Another day in Avignon

It continues to be very hot on this holiday - again in the mid 30's. Still, that's much better than the 12 degrees in Melbourne. Early this morning we walked from our accommodation across the bridge to the main walled city of Avignon. We found a lovely bakery in the old city for breakfast then found our way to the old Papal Palace. This is where the Popes found refuge in the 1300's and established a fantastic palace over many years before eventually returning to Italy. The outside structure looks magnificent but internally there isn't much...

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Jul 4, 2018 - Avignon

Yesterday we had a short drive to Sauve, another old and interesting village. Our accommodation was amazing - a B&B in an old mansion built in about 1809. The spacious rooms were decked out in period furniture, everything was great except the outside which was looking a little neglected. The village was contained within old ramparts from Roman times. We enjoyed exploring the village and surrounds. Today we set off for Avignon but before getting here we made a short deviation to Pont-du-Gard to see the First Century Roman Acquaduct which is...

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May 26, 2018 - Avignon

Day 8. Avignon. (Arles to Avignon) 26/5/18. Saturday. Cloudy, light rain morning; sunny, hot afternoon. 15-30 degrees We are given weather predictions daily, and after receiving todays, I changed into summer dress to suit the weather. Wrong....we had light rain and a breeze and it was quite cool, maybe even 18-20 degrees, and most people felt cold, but it was too late to change again, as we had left the boat and were on our walking tour of Avignon. First we passed le Pont d’Avignon - you all know that song from school days - and then went...

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May 25, 2018 - Arles

Day 7. Arles 25/5/18. Friday. Hot & sunny, some slight breeze. 17-28 degrees Hot and cold during the night - on and off with the doona. We’ve asked for a top sheet, which is the way we like to sleep. Showers and breakfast, and we decided to miss the mornings excursion to a castle fort with lots of steps and olive farm. We both felt very tired, and this is the first time we’ve not done an excursion. Ian got a book out of the library and sat in the lounge reading and chatting, and I stayed in our cabin reading through all the bits of paper...

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May 24, 2018 - Monte Carlo to Arles

Day 6. Monte Carlo to Arles. 24/5/18. Thursday. Sunny, hot. Early start today after ports out last night; breakfast at 6.30. Because the F1 race track is right in front of the hotel, the hotel is totally blocked and we had to leave by the back way, up the adjoining walk to the Casino, across a temporary overhead bridge which goes over the track - and a F1 car roared past right under us - what a buzz, (well, I thought it was a F1 car, but Ian said it was just a medic car, but it made a heck of a noise and was going fast)- up steep streets to...

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May 23, 2018 - Beaux Arts to Brutalism and a French speaking wallaby

With today being our last one in Marseilles and our last day together as a group for some time I was starting to realise that Annie & Carol's and my paces were different. They loved to do one or two things, not plan too much, move slowly, take in a few details around them (taps, handles, dogs) and punctuate each hour or two with stops for coffee, cake, lunch, beer and contemplation. I knew that I had a shortlist of sites to visit and an ICOM pass enabling me free entry to most so I left early. First stop, a 30 minute walk later was Musée...

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Helen in Europe

May 22, 2018 - Cirque de Navacelles, Pont du Gard

Yesterday we drove from just south of Bordeaux to Brive le Gaillard on the autoroute. From here we turned south leaving the motorways at D802 to go to Rodex and on to Millau. We drove from coastal plain through foothills to the Mediterranean Pyrenees. In the distance we could see medieval villages. Rodex was a modern town with perhaps an 17th - 18th century center. Millau was a red-roofed beige blocked building town with a medieval center. We saw a small white train tourimg people aroumd. Just north and west we had seen unusual rock...

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May 22, 2018 - Made it to Marseilles

Arrived in Marseilles via train to a terrific airbnb with our delightful host Gérard apologising for his lack of English and doing an excellent meet and greet. Only one flight of stairs, plenty of space, no plumbing problems and a large room all to myself! One important skill I have adopted, necessary for getting a good night's sleep in Europe is wearing an eye mask - you know, one of those ones they give you for overnight flights. I now have two as Emirates gave out a colourful orange kit from our recent flight. Many of the European rooms...

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Helen in Europe

May 21, 2018 - Van Gogh, Vasarely and Vendôme (or Arles to Aix-en-Provence)

After checking out of our delightful Arles Airbnb we took one last cultural visit to Espace Van Gogh, the hospital where Vincent apparently had his ear stitched back on after that infamous incident. You can definitely see the inspiration for his paintings of the gardens there. For those of you not in the VG know, Vincent lived in Arles in the South of France for more than a year. He experienced great productivity there before suffering from a mental breakdown and produced many renowned paintings of the area such as the Yellow House, which...

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Helen in Europe

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