Monthly Archives: September 2008

L’Isle sur la Sorgue – San Antonio River Walk in the Heart of Provence

Choosing your favorite village in Provence is a little like choosing your favorite child…..an impossible task!!  You love them all!  Though I try to be impartial, there are a few special villages that have captured my heart.  Come along with me over the next few weeks and I’ll take you to some of my favorites.
 

 Let’s start in L’Isle sur la Sorgue.   Phonetically, you would pronounce this something like …  Leel sur la sorg.   But roll that “r” in the back of your throat. 

 

L’Isle sur la Sorgue is known as the “Venice of Provence”, for the Sorgue River that splits just north of town, and winds it’s way through the village via a network of canals.  I’m not sure I’d call it the “Venice of Provence”, but I would definitely call it the “San Antonio Riverwalk of Provence”.  My daughter calls it “the easiest place to get lost in the world”, but that’s another story….(something about mom’s ability to get hopelessly lost even with the rental car’s GPS system, whose annoying female voice my son nicknamed “Giselle”……her British accent got on my nerves after a while). 

 

L’Isle Sur la Sorgue charms you with: 

  moss covered water wheels

 

 

 

 narrow cobbled streets,

 

 

and patisseries with fluffy, mile-high meringue clouds my friend Babs would die for.   

 

Sit outside in the evening and savor Provencal cuisine at one of the many outdoor cafes lining the crystal clear canals.  Feed Mother Duck and her babies scraps of baguette as you wait for your entrée.

 

 

   

 

Admire the beautiful views from every turn:

 

 

If you go in mid-summer (recommended), as you approach the village, you will be greeted on the outskirts by fields of brilliant sunflowers……which I probably never would have stumbled upon if I hadn’t gotten us hopelessly lost!  Good thing I didn’t listen to Giselle.

 

 

L’Isle Sur la Sorgue comes alive on Thursdays with a delightful Provencal market.  And on Sundays, the village hosts the largest antique flea market in France, outside of Paris.  Arrive very early if you have any hopes of finding a parking spot.  Or better yet, spend Saturday night in one of the local hotels or inns and you’ll be in the heart of the action come Sunday morning.  

 

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Parlez-vous fromage?

Did you know France produces over 1,000 types of cheese?  Amazing!!  And there is much more to be found that just Brie and Camembert!   These  websites are devoted to the cheeses of France. They have regional maps, showing the areas where each cheese is produced, with description of the flavors, the processing methods, suggested food pairings, and more.

  

 

Check theses out.  No Velveeta here! 

 

 Ø      http://www.cheese-france.com/

 Ø      http://www.cheesesoffrance.com   

        Bon Appetit!

Paris Museum Pass – Save Hours Waiting in Line

Next time you visit Paris, be sure to check into the Paris Museum Pass.  SAVE HOURS OF TIME – NO STANDING IN LINE AT EVERY MUSEUM, save money too; 2, 4, or 6 day passes available  http://www.parismuseumpass.com/en/home.php  Good for Louvre, Musee d’Orsay, Notre Dame; Pompidou Modern Art, St. Chapelle, Arc de Triomphe, Picasso & Rodin museums, Palace of Versailles & much more; purchase at any participating museum, Charles de Gaulle Airport, or Paris Tourism office on Champs Elysees, & major Metro stations.

Enchanted France

 

France is a dream to me…..and Paris, the most exciting city in the world.  Fresh-baked croissants, a steaming café au lait at a sidewalk café…..the Eiffel Tower sparkling in the night…fields of fragrant lavender and brilliant sunflowers in Provence…..sybaritic beaches on the Cote d’Azur….France is seductive in her charms, and will tempt you back again and again.

  

Happy Birthday, me!

Today is my birthday, and I thought it would be very apropos to begin a new phase of my life today.  So here I am….blogging.  Travel is, above all, an education.  And that is my goal….to educate, illuminate, share, and promote tolerance by traveling and writing.   It is impossible to travel abroad and remain unchanged.  Travel opens your eyes and your mind.  Favorite quotes:

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrowmindedness.  ~Mark Twain 


Don’t tell me how educated you are.  Tell me how much you have traveled.  ~Mohammed