Travel Journal

Pyrenees-Orientales

(Sunday 8 August 2010) by Jill's travels
We have been in the Languedoc-Roussillon Region for two weeks staying in the Pyrennees-Orientales Department near Perpignan. The Site we’ve been staying on is called ‘Fontaines’ and is primarily filled with French families and because of the time of year is completely full. It is very good value though from 20 euros a night, three star site with huge pitches, a pool and a boules square. There are deer all around the outside and are so tame, they actually come up to the fence waiting for food and water. There are cycle paths all around this area with Chateaus in the distance and many grapes are grown at the side of the roads. The people are friendly, we are pitched up alongside a French couple Rachid who is originally from Morocco and his Wife who is French, have 6 children and live near Reims. The only time we heard the children was when one of his children was bitten by a dog who belonged to Ludwig. Ludo for short, is a traveller who sells doughnuts on the beach so, he would come around with his doughnuts at the end of the day, offering them free and in three different flavours, hey! Charlotte one of the flavours was chocolate! Our nearest Town is Canet de Roussillon which has an amazing Chateau and is a short cycle ride away. Parts of the Town is quite cosmopolitan having been recently modernised. The beach though is lovely, very long with white sand and surrounded by the Pyrenees. The temperatures have been so hot that we have been cycling to the beach about 4pm each day. The nice thing about this Region is, it is not as touristy as the Cote D’Azur however, with its mountainous coastline it is just as scenic. Our friends Penny and Paul came to stay with us and flew into Perpignan which is the tiniest of airports and just 15 minutes down the road. We all had a day on the beach at Canet de Roussillon, spent the day at Collioure (which was recommended by our friend Lee) which is a short drive through the mountains, had moules and frites for lunch and feel asleep on the beach! The beach at Collioure is small, pebbly and sheltered by the cove. We did lots of swimming to the raft and is the perfect place to spend with friends. We had an evening in Perpignan, sat right next to the Hotel de Ville (Town hall) where the building next to it fascinated our friend Penny who is an Art Teacher and pointed out the gargoyles, hmm. The nicest places are those up in the mountains though and just passed Collioure further around the coast is a place called Banyuls-sur-mer where they cultivate old vines into a fortified aperitif or dessert wine called Banyuls. Alan, Penny and Paul sampled the bottle over two nights with cheese, it had their vote. The coastline continues right through to Spain, we got as far as the Cap Cerebere. On the way back we stopped at a cove called Anse de Terrimbo, very much tucked away from it all, very popular with the local families for snorkeling and canoeing. We joined them, spent the rest of the day swimming, drying off and getting wet again, great fun. We are here now for another 2/3 weeks when our Daughter Victoria will stay with us then we move towards Spain where we will meet our friends Lynn and Dave, best wishes xxx

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