Archive for November, 2012

November 7, 2012

Some news from France LXXXVII

Let’s get it rolling, another wonderful escape to Paris, am I lucky? It seems the city nevers gets away from me and that’s fine too.

It was a long journey by TGV train from Auray stopping by Vannes, Redon, and Rennes before reaching Paris Montparnasse. Going was ok, taken the Metro to reach Levallois Perret for my business meeting was OK; the problem was coming back in the evening.

Metro was stop underground scary don’t like that, electric problems, on line 3, then arrive late for my TGV and luckily same rate so they just exchange for free but but, the next train was two hours later lol!!! So kill time at the gare is not fun, venturing out was fun a bit, and then the TGV was late,and slow down en route so I was supposed to reach home by 20h30 instead arrive at 23h30!! those are trains for you. BY car it would have been better lol!!!

I had the chance to visit my old office at rue depart, and then venture out a bit, and saw some of lovely Paris getting ready for Christmas season, by the way the lights are out at champs-elysées, must see. Went on for my business meeting alright with a nice lunch at classic French resto Chartier, http://www.chartier-levallois.fr/ classic was the St Jacques with wild rice, and the saucison de Lyon with red wine from the Côte Roannaise and coffee. Nice. One for the future reference, very well served and great food, in a nice elegant old world ambiance. This is at Levallois Perret ,dep 92 Hauts de Seine.

Now some of the latest from my pickup fresh air in Paris with a bit of pollution to balance your diet ::)

The Vélib bikes is in for sure with 23 801 bikes per day in 1 742 stations, however, complaints are falling in as there is a shortages of 5500 bikes as promised and the verification system is lacking so now the city will put an audit to find out.  No panic this is just to have some quality measurements in place to monitor quality of service.

Great even at Domaine de Chantilly (castle)  7, rue du Connétable, 60500 Chantilly. Tél. +33  (0) 3 44 27 31 80. open every day except Tuesdays from 10h30 to 17h.  Last until January 7 2013. Entitled «Delacroix et l’aube de l’orientalisme»,shows the affection of the Duke d’Amale for the Oriental culture , 22 paintings and designs retracing the history of orientalism, the expedition of Napoleon Bonaparte, the beginning of Romanticism, showcasing the artists  and travelers of the military oriental world. webpage http://www.domainedechantilly.com/domaine-de-chantilly/evénements-à-laffiche/delacroix-et-l’aube-de-l’orientalisme

Something new just very near Paris, Marks & Spencer has another store at the end of metro line 3 station Louise-Michel to find your  cheddar, sandwichs poulet tikka masala and others  poulet korma. The new store has  7 000 m² !!! open in the new commercial shopping center of So Ouest ,  31, rue d’Alsace, 92300 Levallois-Perret. Also,  RER C Pereire or the train sncf  line L, Clichy-Levallois. webpage of center http://www.soouest.com/W/do/centre/accueil and webpage of the store which does not even have the new one in it yet, first news from me lol!!! http://www.marksandspencer.fr/fr_FR

Have some fantastic seafood at Le Garnier,111, rue Saint Lazare ,you may be wondering this is an old place Mallards nownew name and same good seafood, excellent dish like this one  cabillaud doré au beurre entouré de petits cèpes bouchons. Something like young codfish golden butter roast with small mushrooms buttons. email reservations here restaurantgarnier@fr.oleane.com  part of the group Menut webpage http://www.groupe-menut.com/GarnierSaintLazare/

And the magnificent favorite of mine for years,  Café Prunier, 15, place de la Madeleine,. open every day except Sundays. Formule: at 35 €, menus at 40 € and 99 € (all caviar). Carte:between  60-70 €.webpage http://www.prunier.com/cafe.php

up my alley, a new restaurant South African style , Restaurant Cap, 42, boulevard Pereire,. Tél.:+33  (0) 1 44 40 04 15. For lunch open every day except Saturdays, Sundays,and Mondays. For dîner,from Wednesdays to Saturdays  Métro: Wagram. webpage see more at bottom of my blog for the site, http://www.thefork.com/2_restaurant/Paris_restaurant/Restaurant_Cap_restaurant/21295/

And I left you with a nice parc Saint Cloud in dept 92 Saint Cloud easy at end of line 10 metro de Paris, seee it all here in French, a breath of fresh in the outer lungs of Paris. http://parc.de.saintcloud.free.fr/domnat17.html

Enjoy my belle France. Cheers!!!

 

November 5, 2012

Camaret sur Mer and the Crozon peninsula wow!!!

This is gorgeous country deep into the Finistére dep 29 and right at the end corner of the presqu’ile de Crozon lies Camaret sur Mer and it is on the sea alright.

The tourist office for the department is at http://www.finisteretourisme.com/ and the place has a wonderful tourist site here http://www.camaretsurmer-tourisme.fr/

We drove all the way on the D791 and D887 from the expressway N165 very easy with good paneling signs.  Here you see the wonderful cliffs at the different points such as pointe de pen hir, and the wonderful heritage of the city.

You must visit the church of eglise Notre Dame de Rocamadour, and the tour Vauban across the pleasure boat harbor. Difficult to write about this beautiful area with poor me. I hope someone will come and do a wonderful prose with gorgeous photos of this area, it really merits more.

the chapel church of Notre Dame de Rocamadour was built between 1610 and 1683 with yellow stones of  Logonna. We can see inscriptions that tell us that a previous chapel was built in 1527.  Older documents tells us a chapel was done in 1373 ,and even back to 1183 ,date in which the chapel in honor of  Notre Dame de Rocamadour was built.  Each first Sunday of September a procession takes place to honor the pardon of  Notre Dame de Rocamadour.

The tour de Vauban was done on premises of king Louis XIV to fortified the peninsula from English attacks.  The project was given to Vauban in 1689 and worked started in 1693 , and finished in  1696.  The 11 canons done made crossing fire with those of the pointe du Gouin, of lines of contention with those at Quélern ,and other coastal batteries. The tour Vauban was in effect done to protect the harbor of  Camaret and the access to Brest.

You also, come to see the alignments or megaliths stones of the area of LAGATJAR;  it had about 600 stones in 1776 from about 2500 BC, and were reduce to 80 today similar to those at Carnac . In 1883 they were declare national monument for its protection.

One of the most beautiful scenary seen by me here so far can be done from the Pointe de Pen Hir, extending at sea by the Tas de Pois. From this point we can see the Pointe du Raz to the Pointe Saint Mathieu , and on nice clear days we can see the islands of Sein, Ouessant and Molène. It is here that at liberation day from WWII, a huge hill was chosen to built a cross of  Lorraine in granite dedicated to the Bretons who fought for a Free France.  The Général De Gaulle came here to open the tower on July 15 , 1951. This was part of the atlantic wall of WWII and those who fought it are well remembered here.

You can had beautiful unique beaches such as Pen Had, between the pointe du Toulinguet and the cliffs of  Pen-Hir, with beautiful dunes and a gorgeous panorama. At high tide, you have a superb view of the rock of du Lion that looks like a giant fake bat. The beach is great for the leisure beachgoer and sun baths ,however a strange sea effect has led authorities to prohibit the swimming, and taken over by the surfers.

In addition, it has a nice artist quarter with many living and doing their work here, and a beautiful pleasure boat marina with a nice littoral of restos and shops. In all a wonderful find, and one to come back in detail and spent days here leisurely lazy, and relax the beautiful magnificent surrounding. Some photos to share with the world.Cheers

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November 4, 2012

Brest,the city harbor of the Finistére.

On my last weekend holiday of Toussaints I decided to go deep into Brittany and visit Brest, and as time became expandable I continue to visit some nearby towns such as Plougastel-Daoulas, Daoulas,la Roche Maurice,  Landenereau, Le Faou, Crozon, Camaret sur Mer, Morgat, Pleyben and just ride around.

The tourist office for the deparment 29 of Finistére is http://www.finisteretourisme.com/ , and that of the region of Brittany is http://www.tourismebretagne.com/

We stay as a family in an inexpensive ibis hotel outside the city as we had a car, it was easy in and out, in fact, we love the car ::)  The rate  was  great at 35€ per night, and as we were only there for shower and sleep kept the price right for five!! http://www.ibis.com/gb/hotel-5042-etap-hotel-brest-sud-plougastel-futur-ibis-budget/index.shtml

Our first attack was to visit Oceanopolis ,the great seaquarium of Brest, It was big, not so great on tanks etc,but very good in educational experience and information loaded on the oceans, the rades or river entry to Brest and the seafood of the world and Brittany. For families is great, there is discount if shows student cards ,for five we paid 70,90€. The place is divided into areas such as Polaire, Tropical, and Tempéré with exhibition on the abyss of the oceans, the fish fossils of deep oceans,and display on old fishing houses and living of old. The webpage is http://www.oceanopolis.com/

One thing we always do is to come early and there was hardly anybody until about 10H30 when the crowds came and we already seen the best and most. We decided to go out and eat, as inside its cafeteria style, nice and good prices like steaks for 8€, but we knew of a resto in our near Vannes that had a branch near by so we went for it , its A l’Aise Breizh Café at the port moulin blanc by the port de plaisance or pleasure boats marina just right as you get out of oceanopolis. webpage http://www.alaisebreizh.com/a-laise-breizh-cafe great as always here, great burgers, desserts like banana splits, bottle of rose de provence Real,and coffees for 127€ for five.

The next day we finally venture into Brest, to the castle and the musée de la marine, inside the castle. done by Vauban in the 17C, you entered by the tour Madeleine. The structure is of a fortress , however, the most interesting part is the musée de la marine or marine museum inside.For 5,50€ and we needed to come back as at this time of the year it opened in the afternoons, from 13h30 to 18H, you see the whole history of marine life,boaters, and seamans in a wonderful setting inside the castle. webpage here http://www.musee-marine.fr/brest.html

Not far from here you have the tour Tanguy and the pont de Recouvrance, with excellent views and tramways transportation all over, but we did walk as we like to see the city up front and personal. We stop by the musée des Beaux-Arts but did not go in,webpage here for information, http://www.musee-brest.com/ . We did walk a lot all over the city, and went shopping at Espace Jaurés with FNAC store of course, cant forget those video games…lol! webpage http://www.espacejaures.com/

We were impresse by the bridge going to Brest over the rade the pont de l’Iroise. Great masterpiece of architecture. We did see the monument to Americans in rememberance for the world wars help to France. IN all its a pleasant city for a day including the oceanopolis. We found it too small for us so we needed to venture out, and that is for more posts ::) The tourist office for Brest is at ave Georges clemenceau at the end of pl de la liberté, and webpage here  http://www.brest-metropole-tourisme.fr/fr/ It has a good train station on TGV service and bus system as well as tramways. You can read about the train station or gare here from the SNCF folks, http://www.gares-en-mouvement.com/en/frbes/accueil/  and for the latter bus and tramway the service is Bibus webpage here http://www.bibus.fr/

Of course we ate in Brest, and we choose something typical marine , trés british and full of youngs from the naval base there which by the way we had no time but you can tour it too. webpage http://www.defense.gouv.fr/marine/au-fil-de-l-eau/vacances-scolaires-de-la-toussaint-ouverture-de-la-base-navale-de-brest

So we ate at Au Bureau, 10 rue de Siam at webpage http://www.aubureau.fr/restaurants.php  where the juicy burgers, the fish and chip and the camembert roti with desserts from coupe giante of 6 scoops of ice cream to banana split, with plenty of leffe blonde beers was for 122€ for five.

Enjoy Brest.

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