Category Archives: Occitanie

The Millau Viaduct and Nearby Attractions, Episode 146

Millau Viaduct day-time photo
Photo Jérôme Pellé

In this episode Annie and Elyse discuss one of the lesser known parts of France, but at the same time an area that is full of wonderful surprises and genuine culture. We know you’ll love the gastronomy, you’ll learn about the birth of Roquefort cheese, you’ll get to walk inside of a Knight Templars fortress,  and, of course, you’ll learn about the biggest, tallest bridge ever built, the Millau Viaduct. This area is particularly well suited for people who are traveling with children because of the many opportunities for hiking, biking, kayaking, and Micropolis, a new park/interactive museum on the theme of the life of bugs. So, Millau is a great place for sure. The question is, is it the right place for you? Listen to the episode to find out!

Would you like to tour France with Annie and Elyse? Visit Addicted to France to choose an upcoming tour.

Places Mentioned on this episode: Millau, Gorges du Tarn, La Couvertoirade a Knight Templars village,The Abbey de Sylvanès, Parc Naturel des Grands Causses, Millau Viaduct, Micropolis

The Millau Viaduct and Nearby Attractions, Episode 146

Episode Highlights with Time Stamps

[1’] This Week’s News and Updates
[1’20] Thank You Patreon Supporters!
[2’28] Related Episodes
[2’59] Addicted to France Tours
[4’01] Thank You for Your iTunes Review!
[4’46] It’s a Beautiful Spring in France!
[5’10] Join Us in France Closed Group on Facebook
[6’07] Millau Introduction
[7’34] Millau’s Geographical Location in France
[8’22] It is Best to Visit Millau with a Car
[8’36] The Aveyron Department and the Causse
[10’33] Where is Millau Again? Draw a Line Between Paris and Montpellier
[12’12] A Brief History of Millau
[13’16] Graufesenque Archeological Site
[17’43] Monasteries Bring Back Business
[19’47] The Local Leather Industry Started in the Middle Ages and Is Still Going!
[21’29] How Millau Became Part of the French Kingdom
[22’29] Huguenots in Occitanie
[24’15] Millau During WWII
[24’40] Millau Today
[26’54] Things You Can Visit Near Millau: Roquefort-sur-Soulzon
[33’45] The Roquefort Controversy and the Trashing of a McDonald’s Restaurant
[39’15] The Many Brands of Roquefort Cheese
[40’32] Touring a Roqufort Cheese House
[41’13] The Story of the Millau Viaduct
[43’41] Is this a Viaduct or a Bridge?
[44’39] Common Types of Bridges
[46′] Uncorking a Major Bottleneck
[47’40] The Problem of the Wind
[52’38] The Millau Viaduct Visitor’s Center
[54’58] Materials Used in the Construction and Costs
[56’50] How Much Does It Cost to Drive the Millau Viaduct?
[62′] How Long Did It Take to Build?
[64’25] Was It Worth Building?
[67′] Also Visit Nearby and Great Visits to Do with Children
[69’17] Parc Naturel des Grands Causses and Local Wines
[70’08] A Great Place for an Active Vacation
[73′] Endives Recipe

Support the show on Patreon and get the Extended Show Notes + your Lunch-Break French lesson!

RSS | iTunes | Android | Stitcher Radio | TuneIn Radio


Millau is an outstanding destination for people who are seeking unusual and interesting destinations in France, especially if they want an active vacation that includes children. In Millau you will find opportunities to discover Roman Ruins, a fortified Knight Templar fortress, great natural beauty, opportunities to kayak in the Tarn Gorges, Roquefort power-houses, high-fashion manufacturing, and last but not least the amazing Millau Viaduct. It is a little bit out of the way and you probably should plan to rent a car to make the most of the area, but those who take the trouble will have a great time!

Top Attractions in Figeac, Episode 143

Top Attractions in Figeac, happy family in Figeac, France
Figeac, Place des Écritures, photo Manuel Alende Maceira.

Top Attractions in Figeac

Today, Elyse and Annie want you to meet someone amazing. Let’s see if you can guess who it is: He changed linguistics forever. He was an Egyptologist. He was born in Figeac, France, a small town in the Southwest.

Did you guess Jean-François Champollion? That’s correct! Champollion is the reason most people visit Figeac today. Either that or they have a job in aeronautics. Figeac is a small town in the middle of nowhere, completely off the beaten track, but we wanted to tell you about the top attractions in Figeac today because we happen to love it and we want to share. The Champollion Museum is also outstanding and we tell you why in the episode. Enjoy!

Join Us in France Book Group on Goodreads

Would you like to tour France with Annie and Elyse? Visit Addicted to France to choose an upcoming tour.
 Episode Highlights
  • [5’39”] Where is Figeac?
  • [6’39”] How big is it?
  • [7’10”] Figeac is in the Lot Department, 2 – 2.5 hrs drive North of Toulouse
  • [8’05”] One of the top attractions in Figeac is the home of Champollion
  • [8’40”] The meandering landscape of the Célé river
  • [9’08”] 8th century monastery founded by Pépin le Bref
  • [11’47”] The home to two major aerospace industry companies: Ratier Figeac and Figeac Aéro
  • [12’13”] Figeac during the War of Religions in France
  • [13’10”] Figeac during the French Resistance
  • [14′] Thriving town because of the aerospace industry
  • [16’52] Restored city center with lots of Medieval and Renaissance homes
  • [18’46”] Jean-François Champollion and his museum
  • [18’50”] One of the top attractions in Figeac is for linguistics nerds
  • [20’16”] A recap on the Rosetta Stone
  • [24’11”] The life of Jean-François Champollion
  • [27′] Champollion, the Egyptologist
  • [30’30”] Champollion and the Obelisk on Place de la Concorde in Paris
  • [31’30”] Champollion died young
  • [32’38”] What will you see inside the Champollion Museum?
  • [35’32”] Top attractions in Figeac for food and local specialties
  • [36’51”] Can you speak Ancient Egyptian?
  • [38′] Archaeology as a science didn’t start until Napoleon
  • [39′] We love travel because it helps us learn new things
  • [40′] Announcement on the new Join Us in France Book Group on Goodreads
  • [41’10”] “J’ai une mémoire de poisson rouge”

Support the show on Patreon.

RSS | iTunes | Android | Stitcher Radio | TuneIn Radio





The Verdon Gorge, Provence and Carcassonne, Episode 122

The Verdon Gorge, Provence and Carcassonne

Katie and Nathan at the Calanques in Provence

Katie and Nathan’s favorite area of France were the Verdon Gorge, Provence and Carcassonne. They loved the hikes, the Mediterranean, the friendly people they ran into, the food, the wine, the whole experience was fantastic. Katie and Nathan are from Durham, North Carolina. She’s 26 and a teacher and he’s 29 and a mechanical engineer.

This is the third part of a 3-part series with Katie and Nathan:

  1. Ep. 120 is on Colmar and Alsace.
  2. Ep. 121 next week is going to be on Chamonix, Annecy, and the Alps.
  3. Ep.  122 the week after that is going to be on Verdon Gorge, Provence, and Carcassonne.

Visiting Provence? Find the Best Deals & Reviews at TripAdvisor.

Places Mentioned in this Episode: Artignoc-sur-Verdon, Moissac-Bellevue, Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, Château Fontainebleau du Var, Quinson, Verdon Gorge, Canal du Verdon, Riez, Carcassonne, Auberge de Jeunesse in Carcassonne.

RSS | iTunes | Stitcher Radio | TuneIn Radio
Continue reading The Verdon Gorge, Provence and Carcassonne, Episode 122