Welcome to the family

During the past weekend we had the privilege of travelling north to Hull to meet Tom’s family. We had a wonderful time meeting Tom’s Mum and Dad, Pat and Bob and     Advertisements

Sur le Pont d’Avignon..

The Provençal town of Avignon was our next destination – an historic fully encircled walled town  has been an important centre of trade over the centuries. It is perhaps most famous as home to the ancient bridge of the French children’s song Sur La Pont d’Avignon. The bridge, also known as Le Pont Saint-Bénézet once consisted of…

Tournon-sur-Rhône : Le Jardin d’Eden

After leaving Lyon we left behind the Sôane river and began our journey on the River Rhone.  Our first stop the next day was the small town of Tournon-sur-Rhone, an ancient town in the Ardeche, which dates back to the time of the Gallo-Romans.The town is  renowned for its Hermitage vineyards which dominate the hillsides opposite…

Pèrouges: authentic fortified hilltop village

On our last afternoon in Lyons, Dianne, Keith and I joined an optional tour to a lovely mediaeval village called Pèrouges. This charming  walled town, home to fewer than 1000 inhabitants, is a complete step back in time. Entry to the town is via a huge stone gateway carved in the fortified walls which surround the…

LYON: the Confluence Metropolis! 

During most evenings we continue to travel down the Saône, negotiating the many locks and squeezing under the many low bridges which cross the river as we travel to Lyon, one of France’s largest cities, positioned at the confluence of two rivers, the Saône and the Rhône. From here we will join the Rhône to…

Cruising the Saône: Romanesque churches and French chateaus

Day 2 of our cruise dawned! After sailing overnight down the River Saône, in southern  Burgundy we found ourselves in Tournus, one of the oldest and most important monastic centres in Burgundy . The weather was a little miserable – our first really rainy day in France!  After a fabulous buffet breakfast we braved the weather, taking a walking…

Entering ‘Avalonia’ : river cruising in Burgundy

On leaving Paris, we joined our fellow ‘Avalonians’ – Avalon Waterways Cruise passengers on our transfer to Dijon via the TGV – “Train à Grande Vitesse”- the very fast train. Geoff was really looking forward  to this leg. Usually the TGV travels at speeds of approximately 280 – 300 km per hour – depending on the…

We ♥️ Paris: dans le 8ème arrondissement

WE♥️ Paris : in the 8th Arrondissement During our last two days in Paris we transferred to the 8th Arrondissement to join our cruise group, staying at the Hotel de Collectioneur. It was spacious and elegant establishment in Art Deco style. IT was lovely but we actually preferred the intimacy and style of Le Petit…

We ♥️ Paris: Grand avenues, gardens and galleries

We are delighted to be in Paris. We spent the first three days at an intimate boutique hotel, Le Petit Paris which has only 20 rooms and is located on Boulevard St Jacques in the St Germain area and also close to the Pantheon. The staff were so friendly and the decor elegant. In the…

On the WW1 Remembrance Trail

A WW1. Remembrance Trail pilgrimage in France and Belgium 2016 marks the the centenary of the Battle of the Somme So we have come to Nord Pas du Calais and Belgium to follow in the footsteps of our two grandfathers, William Spain ( grandfather to Nicole & Dianne) and John Gladstone McIlwain ( Keith’s grandfather)…

London to Arras

Sadly it was time to say goodbye to London and especially to Dominique and Tom. We have loved the time we spent with you both and are looking forward to our return for the wedding at Easter next year. Until then new adventures await. Geoff has been keenly anticipating a trip on the Eurostar for…

Quentin Blake and the House of Illustration

On our last day in London we visited the HOUSE OF ILLUSTRATION in Granary Square. This gallery is dedicated to the illustration of children’s picture books. There were three exhibitions A New Childhood :Picture Books from Soviet Russi Quentin Blake’ s “The BFG in Pictures” Beatrix Potter & Quentin Blake’s: “Kitty in Boots “ The…