On my way towards Germany I headed eastward and stopped in Courtenay for a coffee with croissant. What else?
To be honest, I just looked for a lunch break during driving and found Troyes, which I never heard of anyway. What a pleasant surprise again to discover this charming city.
From the church to the market.
I love symmetry.
And water features.
I moved on to Strasbourg and searched long for parking or camping. Found the camping ground but they were fully booked and rather inflexible. They could have allowed me to wait whether everybody booked really comes. They did not. Not recommendable.
So I carried on to Germany and stopped at an Autobahn Fuel Station.
I did not mention in yesterday’s report that I stopped at a highway fuel station for the night. I headed east again towards Germany and Austria.
55 km before Orleans I found Schloss Châteaudun. What a beauty.
In Orleans I parked at the river Loire opposite the city and rode my bike to town.
A bit further up is already an image oft this hotel and court yard. Now, one hour later it was used for a celebration of the French National Holiday. They had representatives from the US Army around in their original uniforms. Also vehicles were on show from 1945.
One of the vehicles was a Dodge troop transporter which I had driven in my military training in 1979. Can you believe that? It was not a question that I could take a seat and get photographed by the US Army.
About 15 km “behind” Orleans was Jargeau, which had a small parking lot for motor homes. Quite quaint views.
Who has not heard of Mont St Michel? I did and it was on my bucket list for a long time. Today was the day.
The camping site was near, so I took the bike once more and left it before the long bridge and mingled with the crowd. Medieval through and through the place moves you back in time automatically. Everything has style and charm and quality.
I was blessed by being able to attend the end of a church service, where the nuns sang as a small choir with a mystical sound in that high cathedral.
Wandering from level to level one has views over the Channel or inland or is drawn into court yards and chambers.
It is such a center of positive energy that I did not want to leave on the same day. On the other hand my time came slowly to an end and I carried on east bound to Rennes.
My blessings did not seize. Rennes offers stylish architectures and splendid restaurants, pubs and cafes.
2016 was a year of cycling. My total mileage was 5.600 km and 42.700 m uphill. It started in March with the Cape Town ARGUS Cycling Race which I had accomplished about 8 times before. Next came to substantiate a long standing dream end of 2015 to cycle to Rome. We trained hard for it and did it in June. Cycling with a touring bike and a tent is most enjoyable and gives a great sense of freedom. To cycle to the Lake of Neusiedlersee in the East of Austria was the proof of the pudding in July. The cherry on the top the was one my greatest adventures so far. To cycle from Haag in Austria to the French Pyrenees to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, the starting point of the Camino Francais. Cycling: 1.500 km / 6.500 m uphill in 11 days Walking: 850 km to Santiago de Compostella and Finesterre in 33 days.
02.08.2016 Cycling to French Pyrenees (Saint Jean Pied de Port)
The sad part of this story is that I did not reach Saint Jean Pied de Port because my Pinarello was stolen in Carcassone. Part of it was fun as I slept at the Police Station in a cell, because the place was 100% booked. So I carried on by train to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port. I was left with my wallet and my iPhone. All my luggage and the Passport were gone. Much more to tell some other time…
From Carcassone I took the train to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port via Toulouse, Lourdes and Bayonne. All went smooth although I did not speak a word of French. After I finished the Camino Francais I took a rental car to travel to Santander and Madrid. From there it was by train again to Barcelona, where I met Ingrid. By train we reached Carcassone to fetch my Pinarello, which the Police had found soon. Train to Toulouse and air travel with Brussels Airways to Vienna including the bike. It is all about Logistics…
I was lucky with my parking again. It was free until 09:00 a.m. I could drive to the free area in the attached sector. Then: Cycling to town.
What a stunning place at the Atlantic Ocean.
I asked in a coffee shop at the harbor for internet. A rather unfriendly male “no”. Next door was restaurant with two charming ladies, and I received a friendly “of course”, you are welcome… I sat down and updated “time-travel.net” as well as Facebook. This time only “teasers” on FB with cross reference to my website.
Time has come to head east towards home. I found a fuel stations with reasonable prices near La Rochelle and all was set.
Snacks anywhere on route eastwards.
Tremendous weather movements.
Evening in the Auvergne.
Searching and finding quite and free parking near a church.
Long distance driving is a different ball game compared to sight seeing on the bike 🙂
I must remind you, that I looked for parking late at night and tried my luck in that area. What a blessing to be safe.
I always was fascinated about Neolithic monuments. Stonehenge in the Salisbury Plains is pulling me again and again like a magnet. I felt quite some excitement again heading for Carnac.
It is difficult to say the least to describe the impression with a few pictures. There are 6 fields of stone rows over 4 km. There is a monument of a scale which can only be absorbed by walking it completely up and down. Which I did not, only two of them. There were always tombs involved, so the thoughts are it represents a message of the transition from life to the after life.
Near Carnac is a the a semi island and at the far end the village of Quiberon. Unfortunately the weather was playing games with me so the no of spectacular pictures was limited 🙂
Bad weather, good dining.
After a late lunch I headed for Nantes and found Camping de Nantes. A very recommendable location.