Sunday, 9 November 2014

A Holiday in Vaison La Romaine, Provence

Let's reminisce about the last of summer! We are hardcore campers in our family, but this year we decided no tent (and space for us in the car) in favour of a static caravan, which was a mini home for us. Camping du Théâtre Romain was exactly what we needed.
The top of Mont Ventoux obscured by clouds

We spent time by the pool.
Relaxing in the campsite pool

Explored the area on foot and on our bikes. This involved lunches in front of vignobles and scattering people like skittles taking our bikes up to the old part of Vaison-La-Romaine
The vines in Vaison la Romaine
Grapes on the vines
Sampled the local wine. We went to the local winery and I tested the rosés and dad selected the reds, with a very friendly French Canadian. We also had representatives from local domaine's who came to the campsite two nights a week and you could sample the wine there, at a total distance of about 10 metres from our caravan. Try some Domaine Gros Pata - it's a really good Côtes du Rhône rouge.
La Romaine Ventoux Wine

We went to the very large pottery shop, all painted in provencal patterns (aka olives everywhere!).
Plenty of pottery for sale in Provence

Ambled around the town shops, where there was so much soap on sale, along with a sweet shop and Le Comptoir de Mathilde which sold sweet (so many different chocolate spreads) and savoury (hello tapenade) goods, which would make perfect presents.
Marseille soap for sale in Provence
Spreads in jars in Le Comptoir de Mathilde

Oh I turned 22 by the way. (Complete with Taylor Swift played as my wakeup song).
A bottle of sparkling rosé from the local vineyard to celebrate turning 22

We cycled a lot actually, so much so we climbed an hors catégorie climb featured in the Tour de France last year, Mont Ventoux. We're not a family of road cyclists, so we were all going at it on our mountain bikes, and we all made it up to the summit at 1911m (may I add with no proper training... some people would train for it for months!), in one piece. At least the only people who overtook me were eager roadies on their posh bikes and full on bib shorts and matchy matchy outfits. My bike was bought 17 years ago... I think that's an achievement in itself! If you ever do decide that you are crazy enough to take it on, take some warm clothes with you - the headwind over the last 3 or 4km is ridiculous (as if you need that when you have already cycled 18km!), and it is really quite cold. Also, buy chips when you get to the top - you deserve it!
Cycling to the summit of Mont Ventoux

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