Around France in 80 Words: the Cevennes

I was inspired to start this by reading a fellow blogger who suggested discovering parts of the world through a tour in 80 words. As this is a France blog, let's have a go at concentrating the essence of somewhere/thing in France into 80 words.

There are SFNers all over the country, so put your thinking caps on and come up with a short and snappy picture of your favourite place, food, cultural event etc. that you can share with the rest of us. You can have more than one go.

Here is mine:

Cevennes – where you can find 101 things to do with a chestnut: grind it into flour for cakes and bread, glacé it in sugar-syrup, can it, dry it, roast it, turn it into liqueur, syrup, purée - have I missed any? Thrill at the views from the Corniche des Cevennes, plunge into the Gorges du Tarn, stay at Ste Enemie, a charming village of sandstone houses huddled between the cliffs of the causse. You can even ski on Mont Aigoual!

Well yes, Vincent, but you've got to live in the modern age too. Variety is the spice of life.

I often listen to france music and catch the live broadcasts from the music festival at Montpellier. Unfortunately, the "island" attitude of the residents of Eire and the UK, blinds them to the true wonders of the mainland. I'm currently reading about Louis IX and his rampaging through the bottom of France, with Cistercians and then the Dominicans, not to mention De Montfort! I have just been lent a set of troubadour CDs by the famous medievalist chantreuse, Esther Lamandier. This country has so much to offer: people should junk the sky dishes and absorb the richness than it all around them.

Montpellier – has it all: sun, sea, history, beauty and fountains, all 100 of them - the first to secure the distribution of water, the others to embellish the city. A student town, Montpellier’s Faculty of Medicine is the second oldest in Europe and taught in several languages in the Middle Ages. Modern developments include the building of 3 tram lines and a tortuous one-system obliging visitors to stop and park. You cannot just drive through the centre for a quick visit.

I very much doubt it!

Oops, sorry! I was under the mistaken impression that the first (your) post was limited to 80 words, and we were to comment on it. I assumed it was up to us to start other blogs on our areas, and invite comments.(I wasn't paying attention! I wa sbursting to refute the blagarding of La Charante! I forgot to mention that Mitterrand's family home is just round the corner, and Nick Hucknel uses the bank at Saint-Séverin! The most famous french slippers are called after la Charente! erratum: drop the "Gallo" from gallo roman. Largest roman baths in Europe. I wrote a book on la Charente, so I find it hard to only use 80 words. Tell us more about Cevennes.

Is that 80 words Vincent? :)

Admittedly, the Charente does seem to have more run-homers than other areas. This is due to the high number of expats who are there. As to wine, yes, there are no AOCs, but there is Cognac and Pineau. As to attractions: The largest Gallo-Roman baths in Europe. La Rochefoucauld château, and the tallest underground church in Europe (20m) at Aubeterre sur Dronne,( the only plus beau village in the dep). Angoulême, a city responsible for the English being left with only Calais! Not to mention the beautiful eglises romans, which includes the Templar church at Cressac: walls covered with scenes from crusades. The Talleyrand châteauat Chalais, where Jean-Louis Bruno will charm you with his fine cooking!

Nuff said!

Well thank you Sarah and Ronald, just trying to play the game, a very interesting idea to marry style in which we express ourselves with the beauty of where we live, knowing that it does fascinate beyond our noses !

hah, yes what I really meant was that wine growing areas have employment, the charente effectively has no wine and with all the knock on effects that has on the economy. On the other hand parisians do like a second home there as its pretty and near.

The Pays Basque aka Euskal Herria - come home to a real fire :)

Well Shirley I hope not, I read in a French paper that Charente has more people leaving it than any other dept. Economically its in trouble. Mostly the part above Angouleme.The charente maritime and southern charente are holding up. The Herault I would have thought was a better place, they have wine there!

Frank, that's great, and in rhyme too!


Very inspiring!

The Riviera's fast, real fast. Paris-Nice twice in one day, just checking on a client that's what they say, who cares if you are not the one who pays ! Forget the festival in Cannes in May, it's been booked a year, there ain't no way. Monaco's great the Grand Prix a must, forget your budget,the petit prix's gone bust ! Casino's galore in a sumptuous palace, the Riviera had definitely replaced my Dallas !

80 words...that's a book! But I would echo what Shirley says wohoo

Some great reads here. Keep 'em coming!

Creuse in Limousin, where the seasons can be harsh, as can life for the few old French folk remaining, who have been left behind whilst their younger progeny have sought fortune elsewhere. Many enthusiastic British expats renovating deserted and delapidated properties, and breathing life back into 'Hidden France'. Surrounded by rolling green hills, lakes a plenty, the famous red cattle, sleepy villagers show willing with Sunday afternoon Lotto, tea dances and aperos at the neighbours, being the main forms of entertainment.

EXCELLENT idea !!! Will work on "my region" Nice/ Alpes Maritimes ASAP !!!!

Charente north of Angouleme. Where you can meet more people from the Midlands than you ever will in the UK. Where the French are unemployed and wear tracksuits, the villages are all abandoned and moribund, where the food is unremarkable, where there is no local wine, no stand out produce and seemingly no interest in eating or drinking well. On the plus side it’s very pretty, the property is understandably cheap and it’s an easy train ride back to London

Via Ferratas come in all varieties from easy to very tough. Often both mentally and physically challenging, they let you get to places and see things you otherwise couldn't. It's a way to stay in form while getting out into the contryside and enjoying the fine weather to be had in France. The sense of achievement in conquering a particularly difficult via while watching paragliders passing just below you makes it worthwhile. Get your harnesses, go for it!