Monday, 28 May 2012

Colle sur Loup, St. Paul de Vence and Aix-en-Provence

Hello from a lovely warm France.  Our introduction to the Provence area of France was by staying at a gorgeous little village called Colle sur Loup.  We had lovely accommodation with a beautiful view.
The walled village we could see from our window was St. Paul de Vence.
We spent the next morning looking around the lovely village of Colle sur Loup, which has gorgeous buildings, houses and shutters.  He are some photos from our time spent wandering the streets.
We had a coffee sitting at these tables.
A French mum and her daughters going for a stroll.
The lovely French mum you see  in the photo above was to help me out about 30 minutes later translating French to English so that I could pay a parking fine we received.  Oops, we over stayed our welcome in our parking spot.  The French bureaucracy is alive and well.  I took the ticket to the Municipal Police office and they said I had to go to a tobacconist/bar to buy stamps (which is their way of proving you have paid the fine) to put on the ticket and then show them.  It was all very confusing trying to figure out what to do with people who spoke next to no English.  This is where my newest French friend helped me out.  Walking into the bar was quite intimidating as there were about six Frenchmen all staring at me and chuckling and murmuring when they saw I had a parking ticket.  With stamps on my ticket I went back to the police who told me I had to give them the original ticket which the barman had kept.  I went back to the barman to get the original and he said he had to keep it.  At this point after an hour of running up and down French streets, trying to do the right thing, I decided they police and the barman could work it out themselves.  I'd paid my fine, end of story.  Experiences like that really add to holiday memories and I wouldn't have missed the experience for the world.
This policeman and lady had rather a loud altercation while we were drinking our coffee.
After our enjoyable morning, we drove to St. Paul de Vene, a hilltop walled large village which is home to many artists and other people.  It is very quaint, quite touristy but despite many people milling around we had a wonderful time.  Here are some photos from our visit.
I loved this beautiful sculpture and took heaps of photos.
I took this photo of St. Paul de Vence through the trees as we were walking back to the car.
Our next destination was Aix-en-Provence a city I have long wanted to visit.  Our hotel was in a gorgeous old building in the heart of the city, a tree lined street.
 
  The view from our bedroom window.



There are many lovely fountains in Aix.
By night
By day
I managed to step into this one the night before as it wasn't working or lit up.  One soggy foot and shoe.
 

We looked inside this church and the pipe organ was being tuned.  Don't quite know how they would do that.

The lovely dome in the church.
Engravings on the floor.
I much preferred this church to St. Peter's Basilica, it was much more simple and not too ornate.

I was very sad to leave Aix as it is such a beautiful city, one day was not long enough so I will just have to come back.  :)


My next post will be all about Avignon and some of the places we visited nearby with spectacular scenery.

Bye for now,

Anne  xx


5 comments:

Claire said...

Italy one day France the next.........here I am having breakfast reading about your wonderful adventures. It's frosty outside but going to be a glorious day .
Looks like you're having some wonderful weather and enjoying the sights, nice to 'tag' along with you and Richard......
Parking fines eh? Pain in the neck no matter where you are in the world hehe.....

Claire x

willywagtail said...

I wonder if people over there leave their buildings in the tumbledown state because they are too poor to do any patching up or is it because they know it looks so dreamy to us. Thankyou again for the beauty. Cherrie

Petals & Vintage said...

Everytime I have tried to take a photo of a French policeman they have always waved me away with their guns!
Like you, I have an amazing amount of images of French shutters and doors. They are fascinating arent they? Only trouble is you have to have a camera with you all the time because you don't want to miss out on anything. Looks like you are having and awesome time. Still so jealous. Pam x

duchess_declutter said...

Lucky you could smile about your parking ticket experience! and thank goodness for helpful people too. Looks like you are having a great time with great weather too which is always a plus. cheers Wendy

Little Blue Mouse said...

Great photos, it looks to be lovely weather.
I love the statue of the man pole vaulting off the top of a wall!
I much prefer that fountain with the lions at night time.