On the beach (in France)

Jellyfish

It really is many years since I’ve had anything other than a few hours on a beach – mostly my walking takes me either away from such places or simply along the coast somewhere without stopping.  However when you are away for a while then the rush to get to the next place fades and you can slow down a little.  Moving south from Millau (see the previous blog here) we arrived at Grau d’Agde as much by accident as intent.  We found wandering along a nice sandy beach in some decent sunshine with few people around very pleasant indeed.

While we were at Grau d’Agde we visited Agde itself and enjoyed the old town and that will be part of the next blog.  However we also visited Cap d’Agde as well and the images above were taken there.  The actual coast was very appealing however the port of Cap d’Agde far less so.  I described it in an email to a friend at the time as being a mountain range – of apartment blocks and a forest – of masts on boats.  I guess if boats are your thing it must be lovely however for me it was a sterile place with little appeal – the coast excepted.

Having enjoyed wandering the beach for a bit we moved a very short distance along the coast to Marseillan Plage.  It is simply a beach resort however it really does have a very long stretch of very good beach.  The town itself is quite dedicated to tourists and so has plenty of bars/restaurants and food shops.  I’d not want to be there at the height of the summer season nor would I want to spend all of a break there but we thoroughly enjoyed our time.

Lagoon at Marseiilan

A big advantage with this part of France was the public transport.  In this area any bus trip of less than an hour was 1 euro and given there were bus stops near the campsites we were on we did go out for a while on some of the days we were there.  The shot above – taken on a particularly hot day – was in Marseillan itself and is looking over the Étang de Thau towards Sète (about which there will be more in the next blog).

Having had near perfect weather for over two weeks it was obvious it had to change sometime.  Sure enough the day before we moved on it did.  Heavy clouds came in in the morning (see left hand image) and then around lunchtime the storms started.  It had that feel of a tropical downpour and staying in the van during the height of it was not really optional.  As it eased there were voices close to our pitch which made me pop my head out to take a look and I realised just how lucky we had been.  The pitch next to us was fairly unaffected as we were however the rest of the pitches on our line had obviously been flooded to varying degrees.  The water stayed like that for quite a while and people were moving caravans off where they could – we had a lucky escape.

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However “there is always sunshine after rain” and that evening it was lovely walking the beach there for the final time.  The next morning we were up fairly early and other then shopping for some lunch we headed off into the Gard region of France which is the subject of the blog here.

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  1. Pingback: At Millau | Westcountry wanderings

  2. Pingback: In Agde and Sète | Westcountry wanderings

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