From the desk of David Powell…
We have just returned from a lovely 2 week trip to France, splitting our time between Paris and Provence. We began our stay in the 7th Arrondissement of Paris in the Rue Cler area. This is a wonderful neighborhood, with many restaurants and shops, close to transportation (the RER and Metro are steps away), and within walking distance of many of the city’s attractions. We could see the Eiffel Tower from our window! A great place to people watch and soak up the ambiance of this iconic city. On one of our days, we walked to the Arc de Triomphe, strolled along the Avenue des Champs Elysees, lunched in Jardin des Tuileries, saw Venus & Mona at The Louvre…and still managed to view Notre Dame! The Palace of Versailles was another enjoyable day. We also managed to visit the Musée Rodin, Napoleon’s tomb, Sainte-Chapelle and the L’Orangerie–the Paris Museum Pass was a good buy for us. We were fortunate to be able to secure tickets to Roland Garros to see the French Open Tennis. We took in 3 matches during our day-a highlight to be sure. Plenty of good French food and wine contributed to a most enjoyable time in the City of Light.
Onwards to the walled city of Avignon on the Rhône River and home to the Palace of the Popes. We took the TGV from Gare de Lyon, a relaxing 3½ hour trip through the French countryside. Our great little hotel was only steps from the train station, right in the old city. Here is where the title of this report comes from-it’s the name of a charming little restaurant, run by a delightful husband and wife team, within the city walls. Superb cuisine (the duck breast with strawberries being a favourite) – good enough for a return visit. From Avignon, we ventured to Chateauneuf-du-Pape to the north, Arles to the south, Aix-en-Provence to the east, Pont du Gard to the west. Needless to say, more good French food and wine!
Lastly, we travelled to the beautiful hilltop town of St Paul de Vence. Impossibly scenic, this served as our base for Nice and the Côte d’Azur. In Nice we strolled along the Promenade des Anglais (unfortunately in seemingly gale force winds!) gazing out onto the blue Mediterranean. Monaco and the hill town of Eze were also on our agenda, together with more outstanding dining (and that gorgeous pink Côtes de Provence wine).
The true mark of a good holiday-nowhere near long enough! We will have to return for the croissants, the macaroons, the bread, the wine, the cheese, the sights, the sounds…truly an outstanding trip.