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When you think of southern France do you conger up an image of vine covered countryside and Plane trees along the Canal du Midi winding its way towards the Mediterranean Sea? Do you dream of sun bathed afternoon walks, a baguette under arm and sandy coast lines? With so much tradition and culture for tourists to sample, the south keeps visitors coming back back for more.
Southern France is known as the #1 tourist destination of the world and with 300 plus days of sunshine each year there is no wonder why.
France has managed to keep hold of its traditions and culture with little outside influence for centuries. Where other countries begin to look like each other, the south of France remains true, with vine covered countryside, villages in traditional style and colours and communities stead fast to holiday ceremonies. It makes a unique experience for travelers, feeling as if time travelling while exploring little villages in southern France.
Capestang, our little French village, is located directly between the Mediterranean Sea to the south and the Haut-Languedoc regional park to the north, a central location for anyone wishing to explore southern France and the beauties waiting discovery.
Take a bike or your walking shoes down to the Plane tree lined Canal du Midi. The Canal was created as a route from the Atlantic Ocean through France to the Mediterranean Sea, bringing wine, salt and goods to all the local villages and towns along the banks. It brought prosperity to the land, offering an alternative route to ship’s, when before they had to go around Spain and Portugal, which were treacherous waters and guarded by pirates.
Market day in Capestang falls on Wednesdays and Sundays until 13:00pm. You can sample local goods as well as find a variety of souvenirs in this busy town square. There are 2 super markets on the outskirts on town, 3 bakeries, 2 cafes and 5 restaurants, making this a good year round get away.
Find the Capestang information centre near the town centre, and grab the ‘At the Head Of The Pond-Walking Tour’ pamphlet- offering a mapped out route with plagues to show your way around on foot, hitting all the local attractions.
Robin Hood’s Carcassonne Castle is about an hours drive west of Capestang and makes for a good day trip. The medieval castle made famous by Kevin Costner’s Robin Hood as well as Disney’s castle replica has winding paths through it, with unique local gift shops to browse. If you are planning to go for lunch, watch a concert or browse their market, you will find lots to do and see on this day trip away.
The Mediterranean Sea is twenty-five kilometers away, with its white sand beaches and turquoise waters conveniently close for a day in the sun and surf. Be sure to sample a bucket of muscles in wine sauce served with French fries, a local favourite and a culinary adventure.
Shopping at the Polygon in Beziers is a twenty-minute drive from us, in this architecturally unique open aired mall. Makes for a great day trip for any shoppers visiting our town wanting to sample the French fashions.
Domain De La Provenquiere is a winery close by, in a historical building that Napoleon’s second in command once owned. There are entire rooms untouched since his possession. Stop in for a tasting and see what the fine wines in the Languedoc-Roussillon region taste like. Tell Francoise that Eva sent you!
With so much to taste, see and do, no wonder tourists come again and again to visit southern France.
Craig of IndieTravelMedia.com
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In 1772 there was a partition of one European country by its neighbours. A mere 30 years before there was a boy born in a poor family in France. Both events are related because this boy grew up to be one of the greatest botanists in the world and he came to spend a great part of his life in a partitioned country. The result today are the beautiful Kairenai botanical gardens.
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