Roquebrune Castle

"Roquebrune Castle in the Cote d'Azur"

Easy Hiking in the French Riviera The View from the Roquebrune Castle Life on the French Riviera has not always been sweet – at least not for everyone, not all of the time. Life was certainly not sweet for the inhabitants of Roquebrune Castle that we found (just to the east of Monaco) on one of our recent hikes.

It is an austere and charmless place, even by the standards of the

Roquebrune Castle

Eze Hiker in the French Riviera

Hiking in the South of France Eze it may be, but easy it certainly ain’t.

Seemingly never-ending steep stone stairways up towards Eze Village

 

In fact, the trail from Eze-sur-mer, the small town around Eze railway station between Nice and Monaco on the French Riviera, to “Eze village” up in the hills is just one steep stairway, up and up and up for well over an hour, with nary a landing

Eze Hiker in the French Riviera

Roquebrune: Hinterland Highlight

"Roquebrune seen from the hilltop"

Easy hiking in the South of France Roquebrune I might as well admit it: walking – or hiking – is not always and under all circumstances the best key for unlocking unfamiliar destinations.

You can, for example, get a good first impression of the French Riviera just by taking the eastbound local train from Cannes: a single one-hour journey will give you many gloriously scenic panoramas of the coast, a postcard overview of

Roquebrune: Hinterland Highlight

French Gardens

"typical of french gardens this one in bourges"

Unsmiling French Gardens

Foreigners in France – and that includes expats – display a surprisingly wide range of opinions about their host country. For every Francophobe who detests everything the country stands for, there is a Francophile for whom France can do no wrong, and there are, of course, hundreds of different shades of opinion in between.

There is only one subject on which all of these people can agree,

French Gardens

An American War Cemetery in Mont Valerien

Day Trip from Paris Today, we will finish our walk around Mont Valerien outside Paris with the best of the tour’s three highlights. A Visit to an American War Cemetery in Mont Valerien

Just before you return to the street that will lead you back down on your way to the RER station of Mont Valerien-Suresnes, you will find the entrance to the American War Cemetery of Suresnes that features the graves of

An American War Cemetery in Mont Valerien

Climbing Mont Valerien

"Croix Lorraine in the Memorial de la France Combattante near Paris"

Walks near Paris We Went Climbing Mont Valerien All right, Mont Valerien may not be much of a mountain, but one cannot dispute that, semantically, it belongs to the same family as Mont Blanc (whereas the Butte Montmartre and the Butte de Belleville in Paris are mere “hills”).

And it is, with an altitude of 162 metres the highest elevation in the Ile de France, the region around Paris, whose profile admittedly recalls

Climbing Mont Valerien

Bourges – A Pretty French Provincial Backwater

"Cathedral St Etienne Bourges"

Hiking Holidays in France Neglected but Pretty French Provincial Backwater France is one of the most visited countries in the world, but there are many French regions that certainly do not feel that way. The truth is that the flow of visitors to France is very unevenly distributed – like the rain in Spain, say, or wealth in the US.

While Paris and much of coastal France are positively soaked, the appropriately named

Bourges – A Pretty French Provincial Backwater

The Flooded Marais de Bourges

Marais de Bourgues near Paris

Easy Hiking in France Marais de Bourges The Marais de Bourges is a unique landscape: 135 hectares of marshland, criss-crossed by a dense network of footpaths, and all that in spitting distance to the centre of one of France’s oldest cities.

We had been eager to explore this area for quite some time and were naturally disappointed on being told at the Bourges tourism office that a walk would be

The Flooded Marais de Bourges

The Importance of Being Hemingway

"Fitzgerald and Hemingway"

Being Hemingway

This is a postscript to last week’s Hemingway walk in Paris. It also doubles up, incidentally, as our St Valentine’s Day post. After all, it does involve a story of two people who disappeared in the toilet for some private business. Even though they were both men. And even though only one of them actually let his trousers down.

Intrigued? I thought so. Okay then, here goes.

Two Men

The Importance of Being Hemingway

Themed Paris Urban Walk – Hemingway’s Latin Quarter

"Jardin de Luxembourg Paris"

Paris Urban Walk III – A Hemingway Walk

 

The first two episodes in this short series of Paris walks took their cues from paintings and historic photos. This Paris urban walk shall be guided by words. Hemingway’s Moveable Feast

I would like to invite you to follow me on a literary walk through the Paris of Ernest Hemingway – or rather: the small corner of it that he describes

Themed Paris Urban Walk – Hemingway’s Latin Quarter