Au revoir a France

Our final stop on our journey through France is Lyon where we arrived this afternoon and dropped back the hire car.

But first...

During our Loire Valley stay we visited Carrieres de Vignemont, a series of underground tunnels that provided much of the tufa stone used in the construction of the chateaux within the Valley. The caves were also used by medieval residents escaping war and later as a location to produce and store wines.

Guedelon is a 13th Century chateau being built using 13th Century tools. We spent several hours wandering through the site, including the partially completed chateau and watching stonemasons, carpenters, rope makers and blacksmiths at work. All the tools used on the construction have also been produced using medieval methods. The project commenced in 1997 and is scheduled for completion in 2025.

In a village called Chemilly-sur-Yonne we spent three nights at Château Barreau where we had a huge room with a balcony overlooking the vineyard, and tea and coffee making facilities! After almost three weeks of non-stop activity we decided it was time to slow down and consequently had two relatively easy days.

We spent one day walking through the old town of nearby Auxerre and had a wonderful long lunch at La Tour Restaurant. Along the way we ventured into a hairdressing salon and Jim had his very first French haircut, and one of his best. The Cathedral St-Etienne is magnificent, especially the sculptures above the doors at the entrance.

The second day we drove to the quirky little village of Noyers-Sur-Serein where Jim had his worst cup of tea ever, but best mille-feuille (vanilla slice). On the way back to the B&B we stopped at Chablis for lunch which was great, and included a carafe of ... you guessed it!

There are many things we will remember about France but some of the most memorable are:

The number of roundabouts ...and the number of times we went around them
Poplars and church steeples
French residents carrying baguettes
Exit signs from each and every town and village - the name of the town or village with a red stroke through it
Dogs in restaurants
Aires, the frequent rest areas on the sides of the motorways, with conveniences
The cheap price of bottled water, baguettes and croissants
Wind turbine
Narrow laneways through the villages
Outdoor cafés

Tomorrow we board the train bound for Venice and our next adventure ...sur la mer.


  1. Soooo enjoying all your photos... simply stunning. :-) Got Jim's e-mails too.... love the clock and the organ.


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