Camping in Canyonlands National Park

  • We were so lucky on the weather.    A perfectly clear, warm day.

La Hague Coastal Trail

By |September 6th, 2016|

Hiking to the sound of seagulls and the smell of salt air.  La Hague means "high cape".

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Étretat Cliffs and Claude Monet

By |September 5th, 2016|

We hiked a windy trail for miles along the Étretat cliffs, in the northwest of Normandy, near the English Channel.  This was a favorite location of Impressionist painter Claude Monet.  He moved to several locations [...]

  • Vieux (old) Port in St. Tropez

Rouen and Honfleur, France

By |September 4th, 2016|

We started our Country Walkers tour in Rouen, along the Siene river, and worked our way to Honfleur, a picturesque seaside town.  We hiked, and they moved our bags from hotel to hotel.  Nice! [...]

  • Speech wasn't free in the Renaissance.  Speaking out against the King or the church could get you in big trouble.

The Gardens of Villandry

By |September 3rd, 2016|

The Château de Villandry was the last great castle built during the Renaissance period.  Acres of geometric box hedges surround carefully tended fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers.

  • Mike is willing to castle hop if there is aerobic rowing involved!

Chenonceau Castle in the Loire Valley

By |September 2nd, 2016|

This French castle has it all - an ambitious mistress, a vengeful wife, and a king killed in a jousting tournament (by a spear in his eye).   King Henry II gave control of Chenonceau to his mistress [...]

  • Leonardo developed "sfumato", a painting technique in which blurred outlines and graded tone to create more lifelike oil painting.

Château Clos Lucé and da Vinci

By |September 1st, 2016|

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) was an Italian polymath and Renaissance man.  An artist, engineer, architect and scientist, he prolifically sketched designs that weren't constructed or even feasible in his lifetime.  He fled political strife in [...]

  • Who else but Troisgros would flash fry a tender cherry tomato?

Troisgros in Roanne, France

By |August 30th, 2016|

Troisgros is a Michelin 3 star, the highest honor a restaurant can achieve.  They've had 3 stars since 1968, making them an unprecedented success.   Many gourmets consider Troisgros to be the finest restaurant in [...]

  • Guignol is puppet show icon who amuses children and witty adults, similar to Punch and Judy in the UK.


By |August 29th, 2016|

Lyon is the third largest city in France, and the entire city is a UNESCO World Heritage site, because of the early Roman influence.  Cinematography was invented in Lyon, by Auguste and Louis Lumière. [...]

  • Au revoir!  We'll definitely be back.

Chamonix and Mont Blanc

By |August 28th, 2016|

THIS is our new most beautiful place in the world.   In a quick chairlift, Chamonix has mind blowing summer hiking.  Most famous for skiing, the Winter Olympics were held here in 1924.

  • Train de Montevers arriving at the glacier.

Mer de Glace in Chamonix

By |August 26th, 2016|

Mer de Glace (Sea of Ice) is the largest glacier in France, twisting through the Alps like waves frozen in a storm.  It's also disappearing at an alarming rate due to global warming.  The 9 [...]

  • The bull's job is to chase away the cowboys.  The cowboy's job is to snatch the ribbon off the neck of the bull.

Wild bulls and horses in Camargue

By |August 25th, 2016|

The Camargue is the wild west of France, home to the black bull, tended by rough and tumble cowboys who ride the famous white Camargue horses.  Instead of bullfighting there is something like bull chasing. [...]

  • Similar to the Dead Sea, we floated easily in five feet of water.

Salty Camargue, France

By |August 24th, 2016|

Did you know salt has 14,000 uses?  Sea salt, rock salt, and vacuum salt are just a few of the kinds harvested here in Camargue at Salin d'Aguies-Mortes (literally salt of the dead water).   There [...]