We drove to St Bertrand-des-Comminges. Its one of the “ Les Plus Beaux Villages de France”the most beautiful villages in France. It has a lot of history as well so we thought it a good choice. We travelled through the valley, seeing cascading waterfalls and the river rushing along beside us. It was so green!
The Tom-Tom took us along these small country roads and at first, we were worried but we soon realized this was the correct way and that all these little villages are connected with small roads winding through forests and fields. I spotted about 100 houses I could buy and live in right now, those quintessential French villages!
We arrived early for a change and booked into Camping Espibous. Small, quiet and very shady. Lovely swimming pool and ablutions are not bad. We set up quickly and set off into town.we were determined to make it for lunch today.
St Bertrand-de-Comminges has a lower town and an upper historic town. It also has remnants of the early Roman settlement at the town entrance. That’s what makes it quite special as you think its just a town with a cathedral but the amount of history here is phenomenal. It was founded in 72 BC and it has been a thermal, a military camp and then a place of learning and religion.
It’s also, of course, a halting place on the Camino to Santiago de Compostela.
Taking a walk into town and up up up the slope to the old town and the cathedral. Now I haven’t bored you with that many cathedral church pictures this trip so don’t complain. This is considered the Cathedral of the Pyrenees so it seemed worth paying the cheap €5 each for the entrance. It was really worth the visit. I won’t go into too much detail, see the beautiful pics but essentially it has this beautiful wooden church built inside the stone building.
The cloisters are amazing the choir stalls and the organ were all works of art!
So after the education time, it’s time for lunch. Generally, we wouldn’t choose a touristy place like this but we walked past a cute terrace restaurant and the menu du jour looked great. €13-14 for various options. I chose lamb chops and Chris foie gras. It came with salad and frites just out of this world! And then a little glacé (ice cream) for the walk home.
The rest of the day was spent relaxing at the pool, swimming, sleeping( Chris) and reading.
AND then the wind started ( we took down the awning) and the rain started, we went inside to shelter. And it rained and rained and rained.
I think it rained all night non-stop and I was convinced we would be washed away, but no we woke up and the camper was still in the same place.
Talking of rain made me think of toilets, French toilets. So we have noticed the French do this unisex bathroom thing. Both the previous campsites have the douche, and the Lafarge, and the lavabos all mixed. Now I am not a shy girl, but there is something a little awkward about shared ablutions. I don’t mind showering with my husband taking a poop next door, but when I know its someone else’s husband it feels strange. I don’t want to hear those noises. Likewise, I feel a little off taking a shower with only a small thin wooden partition between me and Mr Smith…..men don’t maketh the same noises as girls when they shower. Those noises are not always nice so I prefer not to hear them ( husbands are different, you kinda get used to them). So toilets in France….meh!
So now we off, we heading to Bordeaux, ultimately by Sunday , as I am flying back to London for a fleeting visit to pick up medical supplies for Chris…but we plan to take our time and just meander up that way.
Wonder where we will sleep tomorrow…