Friday, 18 April 2014

France - French Pyrenees and Bordeaux

We decided to visit the Pyrenees on the spur of the moment having seen their majestic outline from Tarbes. We were not disappointed as we travelled through Lourdes on our way to Cauterets. The weather was superb and the scenery stunningly beautiful. The campsite had only just opened for the season and even that was earlier than usual due to the early onset of Spring.

The nights were cold, but we were warm inside Fifi plugged in as we were, with warm days reaching 22C in the sun. The town was well stocked on all grocery needs with butchers and bakers to choose from, a free bus service taking you in and out of town although at only 2km easily walkable.

BBQ / Braai in the Pyrenees

Ferrying tools and supplies to workers on the slopes

It was the intention to stay two nights, we stayed four and you can see why. Fresh air, scenery, good food, an intoxicating ambience all added to the stimulation of the senses.

The Bordeaux region known for the production of world class wines was next - can it all get any better?

Again it is almost sensory overload when you travel along the D5 on the left bank of the Gironde passing Chateau after Chateau with names that are held in the highest regard by wine lovers all over the world.

Chateau Pichon-Longueville

We stopped at the wine information centre at Pauillac on the Gironde for some brochures and advice. The very helpful staff advised that there was a possible overnight stop at Chateau de Cach ....

.... a picture paints a thousand words ....

Again a one night stop became three and the Chateau staff were happy to have us enjoy the tranquillity of their surroundings camped outside a barn with plug-in facilities. We cooked a lamb casserole in the cast iron pot and washed it down with wines from the Medoc and Haut Medoc, how could you not, seeing as you are camped right in the midst of it all.
Staying for a few days on a wine producing French Chateau was a dream come true, more so seeing that we both enjoy a good Bordeaux from the left bank of the Gironde. Good being a relative term because you can empty your wallet very quickly on the better vintages. Visiting in March as we were could be a bit early for connoisseurs as most Chateaux only open from April onwards for tastings and eating on site in the varied bistros and restaurants. Feel free to have the 'house wine' on offer at most establishments, it is good and quaffed by many of the locals - and they would know.

No comments:

Post a Comment