Archive for March 11th, 2020

March 11, 2020

Meaux, and a WWI Museum!!!

And I make a big swing and take you back to my sentimental Seine et Marne dept 77 of the Ïle de France region, and much nearer Disneyland Paris at Meaux. I have visited the museum a couple times and it is hightly recommended especially for those who have no time to reach the battlefields or cementeries themselves; this is a worthy alternative.

This is a wonderful town on the banks of the Marne river not far from Paris nor Disneyland. It is where all started for me in France as married a native, told many times in my posts. It is funny sometimes the places most dear to you are the least visited afterward.  Of course, not counting family visits which are different than visitors.

However, the main reason I came back this time as a visitor, if I can be there, is to see the museum of WWI history on the Marne . The museum of the Great War or Musée de la Grande Guerre.



It is on the road we normally take route de Varennes to visit friends and family , but it is within Meaux city limits. There you see a huge American monument or Monument Americain, a gift of the people of the USA to France honoring the soldiers of the expeditionary force of Gen Pershing.

And there it is , modern , grand beautiful , hard to imagine on these lands so much blood was shed. There is the museum or Musée de la Grande Guerre (Great War is what is call here WWI). It is an imposing building on a small hill square in nature, and loudspeakers tell you , you are in the middle of a battlefield as you approach the museum. You go in to the big lobby and go up one floor to get your ticket and start your journey. The street level is for the boutique and café services. You can go up to the top level terrace and get a view of the city of Meaux.



It tells the story of wars since 1870 so you can undertand the events leading to WWI.  You go around a thematic sequence showing the never forget theme, how was society at the time, school days , a divided Europe, the event to Sarajevo, the Marne in 1914, the trenches, Marne in 1918, victory and armistice peace ceremony; the illusions of the victory, and the re construction of the memories.



It shows the implication of hospital and school personnel in those days, the role of women, and the bringing together of about 35 nations at war.  In all you have machine guns, airplane, armored vehicle, bus troop transports, utensils, small arms and long rifles, canons 75 and 105 mm, etc etc you name it. It is interesting to note that the music played is associated with the times and many exhibits of now playing like family paintings and how to build musical instruments and the music of the time in the trenches. All greatly visually displayed and explained, wonderful.



There is program throughout the year on musical presentation and exhibitions.  Something educational and worth while for the whole family.  One event hopefully never repeated again. Of course, it can be a cheaper base for Disneyland Paris and a great week combination for sure. Hope you too pays hommage to the efforts of many and come here at least once, the Musée de la Grande Guerre or the Museum of World War I at historical Meaux.



As by now usual for me, some webpages to help you plan your trip here and it is a must me think

The city of Meaux on the museum in French: City of Meaux on the museum

Tourist office of the Pays de Meaux on the museum in English: Tourist office pays de Meaux on the museum

Official museum of World War I or Great War in English: official Museum of World War I

And even listed in the tourist office of Paris in English: Tourist office of Paris on the museum

And there you go something worth your time and money to get you out of Paris and into my belle France. A monument to the world and a must again to see me think, me encourage you, me recommended it.


the dead and wounded by nations 35 in all


Triomphant soldier as in life

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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March 11, 2020

A resto and a cider, Morbihan!

Ok so I am trying harder to be creative on names. It is not easy folks, help!!! Well I decided to come back to two reliable places haven’t written in about 2 years in my blog.These are routine trips here several times but they are so good need to again tell you all, just in case happened to take the off the beaten paths of my beautiful Bretagne/Breizh or Brittany.

I am in the department 56 Morbihan, just in case you are new to my blog; it is the only administrative department in France that the name is not French at all. It is Breton old islands across the pond and change over time a bit. It’s Petite Mer in French or Small Sea. In Breton, Mor=sea and bihan=small , get it. Just like Brittany in Breton language is Breizh;ok we like it this way.

Now let me tell you briefly about my two subject of the post, a nice restaurant in my town of Pluvigner and a nice cider maker nearby in Sulniac. My town in Breton is Pleuwigner; a combination that means pleu or plu or parish and wigner or guigner for St Guigner who founded the town coming from Ireland and the main church is name after him.

This is the La Barcarella, brasserie, pizzeria and créperie all into one right by the Church St Guigner. All decorated with pirates and corsairs portraits trinkets and memorabilia that the owner has collected over time and purchase in flea markets! You have a dining room with the bar area and kitchen and then to the right as you entered another dining room. We had different dishes each time and all good.  The prices are countryhome great value price/quality ratio. So if you ever in town ,need to try it for the good food, prices and friendly chat; come on in..


The latest we had  Pizzas la bosco chorizo and ham, la surcouf chorizo and goat cheese, Galettes of goat cheese and honey and chorizo cheese, pichet rose wine of 100 cl (more than a bottle 75cl), 2 banana splits and 2 cafe gourmand all for less than 16€ per person. Great again!! And another great chat with the staff and owner who also does work in the Mairie or city hall office. Mind you they have great reviews on popular travel forums.


They are at La Barcarella, 4 pl du Marche, tel. +33 (0) 2 97 59 00 97.  They have a Facebook page here: Facebook page of La Barcarella in Pluvigner

The city of Pluvigner on La Barcarella

Then, we came back to stock up on one of the favorite drinks in the area, the cider. Second to none, the pure real thing done by farmers co-op and individual family businesses here.

We went again to our favorite family country cider distillery as the Distillerie du Gorvello just passing the Castle of Plessis Josso (see post apart)  off the road to your right and then left into the property.  From the free expressway N165 take exit 22 Le Gorvello/Surzur at traffic circle follow direction Le Gorvello and follow the arrows to the Distillery. A wonderful place making cider, apple juice, liquors from apples such as pommeau de Bretagne, Fine de Bretagne, vinager of cider, etc as well as cold meats canned goods (pork and fish base terrines). It has won many medals in the region at the village of Le Gorvello , town of Sulniac , the Gorvello distillery is a small family farm specializing in the cultivation of Apple Cider.



We went for our dose and pick up a case of coco d’issé IGP cider ,then apple juice, limonade le Lutine, and terrine Henriette pure pork Breton, Rillettes de St Jacques, and local honey. Nice basket all natural the country way in my lovely Morbihan. Recommended if stopping by or see somewhere!


Distellerie du Gorvello, Route de Pébéyec, Le Gorvello, Sulniac with webpage: Distillerie du Gorvello ciders in Sulniac

Hope you enjoy the short gastronomic tour of my Morbihan. It is glorious here , shhh its a secret ok. Just say Hi if passing by ok.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

March 11, 2020

How about the bus in Rome!

So here I am tackling another public transport subject. Even if known for the road warrior trips, I do have used public transports in Europe, who else! When we visited Roma with the family we tried the metro, bus, and train, and we came back as elsewhere thinking the bus was a trip! Even if some claims is delay and long waits we did not encounter any in the Bella Roma! Even in dire times there…força Italia!!!

So let me tell you briefly on the bus in Rome.

Rome has 338 day bus lines, 22 night bus lines and 8,260 stops!! So they tell me lol!! There are different types of lines, the most popular are:

Urban (U): These are most of the lines operating in Rome. They start their service between 5h and 6h30 and finish at midnight.

Nocturnes (N): These buses operate during the hours of rest of the urban lines, i.e. between 00h00 and 05h00 – 06h00.

Express (X): These buses make long journeys and make few stops.

Exact (E): These lines connect the center of Rome with the periphery. Departure times are fixed.

The bus shelters have all the necessary information on the lines served: timetables, routes, stops ,etc. Buses run daily between 5h30 and midnight. From midnight, the night buses take over!

Tickets can be purchased on bus, metro stations, newsstands and tobacconists. Remember that after entering the bus doors, you need to enter your ticket into the machine to validate the trip. The one-way BIT has a validity period of 100 minutes upon validation and allows connections between the different means of transport. However, you cannot exit and re-enter through the metro turnstiles. The price for a single ticket was1.50€ check if change. You can buy the pass or carnet of 10 depending on the days you stay and your trips habits. We used timely so one ticket at a time did the trick

I give you some of the most popular lines from a visitor point of view that I agree these are:

Line 40: Termini – Piazza Venezia – Piazza Pia (Vatican)

Line 60: Termini – Piazza Venezia – Colosseum – Cirque Maximus

Line 62: (My fav line!!) Repubblica – Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps) – Piazza Venezia – Vatican

Line 81: Vatican – Piazza di Spagna – Piazza Colonna (Trevi Fountain) – Piazza Venezia – Circus Maximus – Colosseum

The official Rome public transport ATAC webpage is here in English : Official ATAC Rome transports webpage

I will give you the route planner page taken from ATAC above : Route planner ATAC Rome

If you’re going to land at Fiumicino Airport (like we did/do) the bus to central Rome, the Sit Bus Shuttle will take you to the historic center of the city, where the main monuments are located . A snap!!! More info here: SIT Bus Shuttle stops in Piazza Cavour (Saint Peter’s District), then at Termini station. See timetables and reservations here:  SIT bus shuttle

Terravision connects Termini to Fiumicino Airport directly. Schedules and reservations here: terravision bus

Atral-Schiaffini connects Termini to Fiumicino Airport.  Timetables, information here:Atral Roma bus

The T.A.M. connect Fiumicino with Termini, making a detour to the Ostiense train and metro station. Schedules and reservations here: TAM bus Rome

The departmental company COTRAL offers various connections, including nightly between Fiumicino, Termini station, Tiburtina station and others: metro station A Cornelia, metro station B EUR Magliana ;More informations here: COTRAL bus Rome

We did try the bus from Fiumicino airport to Termini train station and was perfect on the TAM as above. The cost was 5€ one way. On the return we tried the limo taxi service.


There you go a brief tour of the bus network in Rome, the system is huge but we took some bus lines as well in the city; the most was the bus 62 and it was grand! goes thru all the major tourist attractions from our aprt in Nomentano district. We took it every day for trips into the center of Rome.


Another nice line is bus 40 as it takes  you from Termini to the Vatican city. The Termini bus station is huge and many lines are shown there. There are kiosks to purchase your ticket and then you to the quays of your bus line. Very easy to do and fast waiting period too. Even if this was a one time trip.

Hope it helps your decision to use the bus in Rome, above ground you always see more and enjoy more Rome. Enjoy the bus rides!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!



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