Fort Boyard on the west coast of France

May 15th, 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

© Patrick Despoix/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Patrick Despoix/cc-by-sa-4.0

Fort Boyard is a fort located between the Île-d’Aix and the Île d’Oléron in the Pertuis d’Antioche straits, on the west coast of France and is the filming location for the TV gameshow of the same name. Though a fort on Boyard bank was suggested as early as the 17th century, it was not until the 1800s under Napoleon Bonaparte that work began. Building started in 1801 and was completed in 1857. In 1967, the final scene of the French film Les aventuriers was filmed at the remains of the fort.   read more…

Neuf-Brisach in Alsace

May 8th, 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage

Town hall © Psu973/cc-by-sa-3.0

Town hall © Psu973/cc-by-sa-3.0

Neuf-Brisach is a fortified town and commune of the department of Haut-Rhin in the French region of Alsace. The fortified town was intended to guard the border between France and the Holy Roman Empire and, subsequently, the German states. It was built after the Treaty of Ryswick in 1697 that resulted in France losing the town of Breisach, on the opposite bank of the Rhine. The town’s name means New Breisach. In 2008, the ville neuve of Neuf-Brisach was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as part of the Fortifications of Vauban group.   read more…

Château Margaux and Château Lascombes in Margaux-Cantenac

April 29th, 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

Château Margaux © Benjamin Zingg/cc-by-sa-2.5

Château Margaux © Benjamin Zingg/cc-by-sa-2.5

Château Margaux, archaically La Mothe de Margaux, is a wine estate of Bordeaux wine, and was one of four wines to achieve Premier cru (first growth) status in the Bordeaux Classification of 1855. The estate’s best wines are very expensive, with a standard-sized bottle of the Château Margaux grand vin retailing at an average price of $639. The estate is located in the commune of Margaux on the left bank of the Garonne estuary in the Médoc region, in the département of Gironde, and the wine is delimited to the AOC of Margaux. The estate also produces a second wine named Pavillon Rouge du Château Margaux, a third wine named Margaux de Château Margaux, as well as a dry white wine named Pavillon Blanc du Château Margaux which does not conform to the Margaux appellation directives.   read more…

European Historic Thermal Towns Association

April 19th, 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Architecture, General

Gellért Baths in Budapest © Joe Mabel/cc-by-sa-3.0

Gellért Baths in Budapest © Joe Mabel/cc-by-sa-3.0

The European Route of Historic Thermal Cities is a Cultural Route of the Council of Europe. The route is supported by the European Historic Thermal Towns Association (EHTTA), founded in 2011, a nonprofit organization with currently 26 members in 11 European countries (including Turkey). In the spring of 2013 EHTTA was awarded the “Cultural Route of Europe” by the “European Institute of Cultural Routes”. The Press Office of the City of Baden-Baden calls the European Route of Historic Thermal Baths the European Bathing Route.   read more…

The Le Soléal

February 1st, 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Cruise Ships, Yacht of the Month

in Ushuaia © Balou46/cc-by-sa-4.0

in Ushuaia © Balou46/cc-by-sa-4.0

Le Soleal is a cruise ship owned and operated by Compagnie du Ponant. The ship was built at the Fincantieri shipyard in Ancona, Italy, and was launched on the 6 December 2012, being christened by Kiki Tauck Mahar of U.S. travel company Tauck. The vessel started its maiden voyage on 1 July 2013. Le Soleal‘s homeport is Mata Utu, capital of the French overseas territory Wallis and Futuna.   read more…

Étang de Thau in Southern France

February 1st, 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Barrou Neighbourhood and the Étang de Thau with its Oster farms seen from Sète © Christian Ferrer/cc-by-sa-3.0

Barrou Neighbourhood and the Étang de Thau with its Oster farms seen from Sète © Christian Ferrer/cc-by-sa-3.0

Étang de Thau or Bassin de Thau is the largest of a string of lagoons (étangs) that stretch along the French coast from the Rhône River to the foothills of the Pyrenees and the border to Spain in the Languedoc-Roussillon. Although it has a high salinity, it is considered the second largest lake in France. Located between the towns of Sète and Marseillan in the Hérault département, the Étang de Thau is shared administratively by the communes of (running clockwise): Balaruc-le-Vieux, Balaruc-les-Bains, Frontignan, Sète, Marseillan, Mèze, Loupian and Bouzigues. The Bassin de Thau provides a habitat for a variety of wild animals, notably birds such as herons and pink flamingos and a rich marine fauna, including bivalves (oysters and mussels), jellyfish, fish, and algae. Periodically in the spring and summer, the Thau Lagoon has algae blooms of Alexandrium catenella which sometimes reach such high levels that it results in contamination of the lagoon’s bivalves with algae toxins.   read more…

Place de la Bastille in Paris

December 14th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Paris

Place de la Bastille © Kaihsu Tai

Place de la Bastille © Kaihsu Tai

The Place de la Bastille is a square in Paris where the Bastille prison stood until the storming of the Bastille and its subsequent physical destruction between 14 July 1789 and 14 July 1790 during the French Revolution. No vestige of the prison remains. The square straddles 3 arrondissements of Paris, namely the 4th, 11th and 12th. The square and its surrounding areas are normally called simply Bastille.   read more…

Place Stanislas in Nancy

December 10th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Grand Hotel © Moala/cc-by-2.5

Grand Hotel © Moala/cc-by-2.5

The Place Stanislas is a large pedestrianised square in the French city of Nancy, in the Lorraine region. Since 1983, the architectural ensemble comprising the Place Stanislas, the extension of its axis, the Place de la Carrière, and the Place d’Alliance, has been on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.   read more…

L’Estaque in Marseille

November 2nd, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Port of L'Estaque © Irønie/cc-by-sa-3.0

Port of L’Estaque © Irønie/cc-by-sa-3.0

L’Estaque is a former fishing village, located on the Rade de Marseille, which was incorporated in 1946 as part of the 16th Arrondissements to Marseille. West of L’Estaque begins the Côte Bleue. The hill chain Chaîne de l’Estaque gave the place its name.   read more…

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