The crossing has been booked for Wednesday (half the price of Monday or Tuesday) so we are killing time before returning to UK. Nowhere better to do that than Wimereux at Camping L’olympic, where only three months ago we said we would not come back to. Our gripe was that while most of the pitches are spacious, some are tough to get in and out of. Today the place is nearly empty and we were told to park where we like, so we have loads of room and easy access.
Took a slight detour at Arras to look for a relative who was killed near here, but we need to do a bit more research into the local cemeteries if we are going to find him.
Left Montbard with no idea where to go other than north. Took the D980 towards Châtillon-sur-Seine. In comparison to yesterday’s trip up through Burgandy, this is a bleak and desolate land, with the towns much less picturesque and the vines replaced with cabbages and turnips. From Châtillon-sur-Seine we took the D971, which took us into Champagne county with the agriculture and villages becoming more interesting.
On joining the motorway just south of Troyes we headed north and eventually noticed we were not that far from Péronne, where we stayed at a couple of times some years ago, but where it always rained. There are shops in Péronne, an interesting museum, some public transport, and La Somme to walk along should we get some sun, so decided on a return visit for a few days to recover from this longish journey.
Turns out it has been five years since we were last here, and finally it has stopped raining. However, it is pretty cold.
Canal du Nord
Revisited the Museum of the Great War here, for the first time in six or seven years. Similar exhibits, but more information including topics on the lead up to and aftermath of the conflict. Also, there are developing touch screens all over the place, but much of the information there is a duplication of what is already written on the walls. The audio-visual presentation of life on the front was still in French at this time, but we were told will soon be in English as well.
Ignored the attraction of the motorway and left Cluny on the D981 north. What a great road, taking in picturesque villages, fields of vines and load of vineyards. Cormatin and Sercy looked particularly nice, so we need to find some places to stop on this route for future visits.
Eventually ended up at Campsite Municipal de Montbard ‘Les Treilles’ in Montbard, via Montbard’s Intermarché. Nice campsite:
Proper motorhome pitch – why aren’t there more like this?
Moving north now:
Arrived at Campsite Municipal de St. Vital, which we pretty have to oursleves:
Campsite Municipal de St. Vital
The town is a short walk from the campsite and a nice place to wander around. Bars, butchers, bakers, wine shops and interesting second hand shops.
The great old abbey, the main reason we came here:
Abbaye de Cluny
Abbaye de Cluny again
Behind the prison ship is Camping de Tournon HPA
A boat, on the river, with passengers paying lots of money to be on a boat
A great big duck, looking for its supper
They take the wine seriously on this side of the river, here is Ceres – Goddess of harvest, fertility, agriculture:
I am Ceres, and these grapes are MINE
Moving on tomorrow, so Chocolate City will have to wait for another trip. Went into the shop though, 30 Euros spent on chocolate in no time. Hang on, that is three bottles of Pouilly-Fumé.
After a few days of doing not a lot in Die, we move on to Tain-l’Hermitage, just across the river from Tournon, where we were a few weeks ago:
Maybe Chocolate City tomorrow.
Église du Prieuré de Tain
Vines from the right bank
Headed east, as going north looked like rain:
We are in a place called Die. The road here from Le Pouzin is great, even in a big lumbering motorhome, with nice views. Stopped at the Intermarché Hyper in Loriol-sur-Drôme, which is selling a decent range of LPs.
View from outside the campsite at Die
Nearly into October so time to start moving north, before the weather turns dire. We are off again, then, not before visiting the Sunday market in Lourmarin, which was memorable for its expensive items, and being devoid of tat.
We were aiming for Camping l’Albanou, with its bar, pool, food and all mod cons, but managed to turn into the campsite next door, which has no bar, or anything really. Nice place, nevertheless, so we stayed.
Camping de l’Ouveze (next door to l’Albanou)
We need to find something interesting to do tomorrow.
Ferrari in Lourmarin
Lourmarin – nice place
Finally warm weather, for the first time this month. Lourmarin is a very nice place.
That Fiat again
Fridge empty, no wine, no food, and as much as it is nice here, we decided to move on. Big debate as to whether to go to Massane, which we love, but where we were only four months ago, or somewhere new, or to somewhere we had been before but not for a while. Last option, then. We visited Lourmarin about six years ago and liked it a lot. Topped up at the Super-U at Puyvert, a supermarket that is nearly impossible to find in the middle of nowhere. Fridge now full and we have some wine on board.
Nice Fiat 500 (original) causing traffic chaos in Lourmarin
Route from Avignon, a scary place to drive out of during lunchtime rush-hour – even the locals were driving one another nuts with much pushing in tooting horns :