Nantes is in Brittany ,Yes!!!

I have written before on March 2011 in my blog, and on this wonderful long weekend ,I was there again. Nantes is in Brittany,Yes!!!!

The controversy lingered on for years ever since an adminitrative order in 1941 put them apart, but hey that was the treacherous government of petain, and it should be change. Nantes is Breton Nanoed.

The city has a nice big city look with a nice small town feel, that I like so much. Going again there is always a pleasure even if there is a lot to see in France, coming bac to places you like is a delight.

We arrive by car and immedialy sought parking on the street for free (holiday victory day 1945) by the Les Machines area. And then, we walked all over the city, easy to do so and see more of the local flavor.

The les Machines de l’île is at the old parc des chantiers navales, the navy depot, now converted into an amusement park of great proportion. Adult fare is 8€ and you have restaurant  and boutique service on site. There is a covered parking Les Machines as well. Or you can take line 1 of tramway to stop Mediathéque or Chantiers Navals and walk over the bridge Anne de Bretagne. Webpage www.lesmachines-nantes.fr

The best to see is the la galerie des machines with man made animals and birds as well as an avion or airplane with demonstrations that is very educational and active for the whole family. You can ,then, hop on a the Le Grand Elephant, 12 meters high, 8 M wide, and 21 meters long with 48,4 tons of steel and wood running at 1-3 kph! and ride all over the park and into the galerie des machines!Another item is the carrousel des mondes marins, a carrousel with fish machines all showing how the sea deeps and abyss all the way to the surface is interconnected. The carrousel is 25 meters high and 22 meters in diameter. Don’t forget to go thru the Serre Tropicale and see how  plants and machines animals interact. You go out and across the big hallway and into the shops /atéliers above where the artists do their work on the maintenance of these machines and plants. Right in this park you will find the Atéliers and chantiers navales de Nantes, building now an exposition center of great value with great work showcase as well as an excellent location. This was the old adminstration building for the naval shipyards of the city. webpage http://www.nantes-tourisme.com/activite/maison-hommes-et-techniques/ateliers-chantiers-nantes-2823.html

We walk over to the Naval museum , Maille Bréze with a real battleship cruiser to boot, webpage http://www.maillebreze.com/ ,and the Gare Maritime with great cruises on the river Loire such as with the Chantenay boat, webpage http://www.finist-mer.fr/navibus/navibus-loire-_R_200_3_.htm . Finally ,move into the city with the across the quai church of Notre Dame de Bon Port or as locals call it the church of Saint Louis, webpage http://www.notre-dame-de-nantes.cef.fr/?page_id=75  .Passing by the museum of Dobrée now under renovations to open in 2015, webpage http://www.loire-atlantique.fr/jcms/cg_7520/musee-dobree

We continue our walks thru the rue voltaire and see the Musée d’histoire naturelle, webpage http://www.museum.nantes.fr/pages/00-introduction/page1.htm o n our way to place gasclin and the théatre Gasclin, with great operas and musical presentation ,as one of the best in France. webpage http://www.angers-nantes-opera.com/informations.html, and the lovely Cours Cambronne gardens with info web here, http://www.courscambronne-association.com/

Follow that up with the Church of  Saint Nicolas, http://en.nantes-tourisme.com/activity/basilique-saint-nicolas-saint-nicholas-basilica-2760.html a wonderful spiral church. Going thru all places like visiting again the Mercure centre hotel we used to stay when living in the Paris region, and the old Chez Clement restaurant now change to L’Entrecôte same spot on place Fleurot de l’angle. and the wonderful local  landmark La Cigale restaurant.

Continue onto the place Royale, and its wonderful fountain of Nantes, and our favorite restaurant chain the Maître Kanter where we had a nice lunch with beers,and went over to the Amorino italian ice cream place to have the desserts here, sublime and grand, simple the best combination. webpage for resto http://www.tmk-nantes.com/ and the ice cream/coffee http://www.amorino.com/fr/newsletter/fiche-boutique/Nantes+-+Royale

We continue with our sightseeing on foot, into the tramway lines, the bus lines, the petit train de nantes, and the parking to check out at place du commerce. All the public transport and parking info on Nantes n French, http://www.nantesmetropole.fr/pratique/deplacements/ and the petit train site http://www.lepetittraindenantes.com/

We then arrive at the big ones, the Cathedral St Pierre et St Paul, the church of the bishop and built between 1434 and 1891!!! right at place Saint Pierre, with wonderful nave and tombs of the last dukes of Brittany François II and his wife Marguerite de Foix as well as revered general Lamoriciére, webpage http://www.cathedrale-nantes.cef.fr/ . This is wonderful and just next to it is the Chateau des Ducs de Bretagne, yes that’s right the castle of the Dukes of Brittany ,of course. Here Brittany by marriage of Anne de Bretagne was ceded by treaty to the France in 1532! A wonderful airy castle with lots to see today an exhibition on the wars of I and II. Great walk along the ramparts and wonderful views of the city. webpage http://www.chateau-nantes.fr/

And to close for those who have little time and one time visit,,there is also, the omnipresent hop on hop off bus ride, http://en.nantes-tourisme.com/nantes-tour-bus-touristique-22600.html

In all, a wonderful city ,deserving more time and visits, and this year 2013 named the European Green Capital!!! nice gardens and flowers all over…!!! Cheers

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