I am now back from a lovely four-day-long trip to the region of Aquitaine, situated in the South-West of France. Or, if your geography isn’t that great, I basically went to where Bordeaux is, plus the surrounding area.
We stayed in a cute little “residence”, which was pretty much our own house so we had to cater for ourselves. It’s amongst these other residences which look almost exactly the same on the outside. We stayed on the outskirts of a town called Libourne, which is about 45 mins – 1 hour drive from Bordeaux itself.
We arrived on Saturday afternoon, after taking a plane from Southampton. The plane journey was about an hour and a half long, but it felt much shorter, and thankfully there wasn’t much turbulence. The only tragic thing that happened was that FlyBe usually give out sweets at the end of the plane trip when you’re getting off the plane, and as I opened the packet mine fell onto the floor. (So my mum gave me hers.) And of course, on Saturday evening we sat in to watch Eurovision.
Sunday we went to the town of Saint Emilion, which is a listed on the UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s absolutely beautiful especially at this time of year, but I can imagine that plenty of tourists come through in the summer. We then drove to Arcachon to visit the beach (obviously not just the beach!) but what was unfortunate was that my previous pair of flip flops were eaten by my dog, so I had to buy a new pair. The only thing was that we found a shop selling them was after we went to the beach, so I’d already had to empty out my Vans that were already starting to get holes in the sides. When I took them off to empty out the sand, it looked like half the beach had gone into my shoes!
Monday we went to Bordeaux itself, and even though my iPod said it was forecast to rain in the middle of the day, we were lucky to avoid it completely. We took a red bus tour of the city, and it was really interesting to learn about the history. Some of you know the reason I went on this trip was partly for my A-Level French exam, in which we have to study a region (I chose Aquitaine) so it was great that there was quite a lot of stuff I knew beforehand, but the tour helped to develop some of the things I didn’t know exactly, such as the statistics of the population, or how many wine producers are in the Gironde region! We then had an Italian lunch, and unfortunately when we got back to our residence, the WiFi stopped working so that is why I have been fairly absent over the last few days. (Any recent comments are from when I’ve found WiFi in restaurants!)
On Tuesday we went to the Medoc region, where a lot of the big cabinet vineyards are. My mum was saying that her friend knew that they’d had ancestors who lived or owned one of the chateaus so we went to see that as well. It’s basically just one mansion after the next! For most of the day we just drove around and looked at vineyards. We also went to Pomerol, which is where one of the most expensive red wines is made in the world (according to my dad. He’s a bit of a wine fanatic).
And finally, yesterday (or today, as I am writing this on Wednesday) we went into Libourne itself and wondered around for a bit. We found a great café called the French Coffee Shop (I think…) which sells amazing Mango Smoothies, so I recommend it to all of you, if you ever go to Libourne. At this point my new flip flops were starting to give me a blister so we went to find some proper shoes. Only when I swapped them, my new shoes also started to give me even worse blisters, so I resorted back to the flip flops. (I’m sure they’ll be okay eventually, I just need to wear them in). We went to try and see if the Vayres Château was available to have a look around, but when we got there, we found that it’s only open in certain seasons, and as it turned out, we were there too early. So we then drove down South to the town of Cadillac (Yes, like the car), and had a great time. There’s a castle which we looked around and it was amazing because there was about an hour until it closed and there were barely any other tourists so we got around the whole thing in about half an hour. Again, if you ever go to Cadillac, then have a look at the castle, because it’s so worth it. Especially if you’re a history fan.
And that was our trip to Bordeaux! Tomorrow morning (or this morning, when you’re reading this) the plane will leave at 7:20am, which means we’ll have to leave at 5:00 so we’ll have to get up at about 4:00am, so I’m going to be shattered when I get home. And as of tomorrow (Friday), I will be starting my new blog series, which you can read more about here!
All for now,