France

Insider Guide to Brittany’s Pink Granite Coast

10/07/2019 by .

Brittany’s northern coast offers up some quite astonishing natural drama. But journey past Dinard and the enchanting half-timbered houses and ramparts of Dinan, and another astonishing natural wonder awaits; the marvel that is the Pink Granite Coast.

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Christmas Markets and more in Northern France

07/12/2018 by .

Most people hurtle through Pas de Calais on their way South but it’s an easy hop across the channel, particularly if you use Eurostar.

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Moulin Rouge, Paris

29/10/2018 by .

Its very name is such a cliché, you’d be tempted to think the word itself is a bastardisation of Clichy, the boulevard synonymous with the legendary Moulin Rouge,  But cliché or not, this sumptuous cabaret approaching its 130th birthday continues to be the greatest show in town.  

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Atelier Des Lumieres. Paris 

18/10/2018 by .

Can viewing art digitally ever be as good as poring over the brush-strokes of the real thing?  The thrilling close-ups of Chagall’s Paris Opera ceiling recently projected onto a screen at the city’s Philharmonie convinced this art lover it really could, and now the Atelier des Lumieres, the city’s latest and greatest attraction, proves that looking at highly-detailed images through a magnifying lens and state of the art projectors is the way to go.

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Touring Brittany by Motorhome

23/07/2018 by .

Montpellier. Modern metropolis with a mediaeval heart 

13/02/2018 by .

That you can get a great glass of organic wine in Montpellier for three euros tells you something about the allure of this under-visited city.   That a mile or two and a millennium separate the historic centre and the futuristic new city rising on the riverbank tells you something else – it’s forever moving forward. 

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“Les Glorieuses” de Bresse

21/12/2017 by .

How far would you travel for a chicken?  More than 6000 miles if you’re one of the gourmet Japanese who are crazy about poulet de Bresse, the first livestock to be awarded an AOC and the only bird Francois Hollande would consider serving in the Elysee Palace.  Brits may barely have heard of them, but apparently the Japanese adore them.

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Biking in Burgundy

19/06/2017 by .

The EuroVelo 6 is a long distance cycle track from the Black Sea to the Atlantic. It runs a total of 2,270 miles along the course of some of Europe’s major rivers. Rupert Parker tries a short stretch in Burgundy.

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Walking the Camino de Santiago

14/05/2017 by .

In recent years the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela, in the North West of Spain, has become increasingly popular. It’s known in English as “The Way of St James”, as the bones of the disciple are supposedly buried in the cathedral of Santiago, but to most people it’s just the Camino.

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Aube: Champagne and Templar

14/02/2017 by .

In Aube, in the south of the Champagne region, the largest Cistercian monastery was founded in 1115 by an abbot, later canonised as Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. Not only was he instrumental in the founding of the Knights Templars, he also brought Pinot Noir grapes from Burgundy, an essential ingredient in Champagne

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