Tag Archives: Visiting France with Children

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

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Conclusion

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!

Chamonix, Annecy, and the Alps, Episode 121

Chamonix, Annecy, and the Alps Trip Report with Katie and Nathan


Snowy weather in June at the Aiguile du Midi
Snowy weather in June at the Aiguile du Midi.



In the second installment of my conversation with Katie and Nathan, they tell us about their visit to Chamonix, Annecy, Alps  and also their excursions to the Aiguille du Midi and the Mer de Glace.  Katie and Nathan are from Durham, North Carolina. She’s 26 and a teacher and he’s 29 and a mechanical engineer. They visited France in June 2016.

This is the 2nd part of a 3-part series with Katie and Nathan:

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

Hotels Recommended in this Episode: Hôtel Vert in Chamonix, Hôtel du Château in Annecy

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

Places Mentioned in this Episode: Kandersteg Alpine Slide, Chamonix, Aiguille du Midi, Mer de Glace, Annecy.


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Continue reading Chamonix, Annecy, and the Alps, Episode 121

Trip Report Loire Valley and Dordogne, Episode 82


Loire Valley and DordogneOn today’s episode Matt from Boston tells us how to have a great vacation in France with young children, specifically in the Loire Valley and Dordogne. Matt tells us how he and his wife and daughters spent three and a half weeks touring around France and what their favorite places were. Today we concentrate on their visit of the Loire Valley and the Dordogne, and as it turns out Dordogne WAS one of their favorites!


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Some of the Topics Discussed on the Show

  • Why did they choose France? Why did they choose late spring?
  • Can they speak French? Did that become a problem? How much French do you really need to be comfortable getting around in France?
  • How did they deal with their daughter’s severe food allergy while in France?
  • French Tip of the Week: How do you say “my daughter is allergic to eggs” in French? “Ma fille est allergique aux oeufs”. Just in case, do what Matt did, print out a card in French that you can show to waiters.
  • How did they like the food in France?
  • What is it like driving in France? See Episode 16 for more on that.
  • Why did they skip Paris?
  • What is it like landing in France in the middle of a huge taxi strike?

A Few Navigation Time Stamps

18:00 Matt talks about driving in France, that it was great and that episode 16 on that subject helped him greatly. He found that French people pretty much don’t speed, don’t pass on the right, don’t honk at you when they disagree with your driving choices, he even loved  the roundabouts. Bring a stand-alone GPS such as a Tom-Tom that rely on GPS signal alone and not maps tied to your smart-phone.

24:45 Matt mentions how it’s lovely that there are so many picnic tables in France. You can bring your own food, it’s encouraged!

29:00 What it is like shopping at French grocery stores? Going to the butcher’s and the open-air market. Great bread everywhere, great fruit and vegetables. Annie explains briefly how food distribution works in France.

35:00 Why some freeways are toll roads in France and others are not.

37:00 How you can deal with hot weather in France if your rental home does not have air-conditioning: open everything up at night and close everything, especially shutters, all day. Go swimming. Don’t cook inside, use the barbecue outside!

Places Mentioned on the Show

Château de Chenonceau, Château du Clos Lucé (Leonardo DaVinci), Beynac, Vitrac, Lascaux, Fond de Gaume, La Roque Saint-Christophe, le Gouffre de Padirac, la Fôret des Singes, Castlenaud-la-Chapelle.

Loire Valley and Dordogne
Chenonceau, photo Andrea Schaffer

Matt’s Detailed Itinerary

Wednesday June 24
• Flew from Boston to Paris via Iceland

Thursday June 25
• Arrived at Charles de Gaulle airport during taxi strike, train terminal very busy, missed our TGV reservations
• TGV to Tours in afternoon, picked up rental car in Tours, drove to B&B in La Croix-en-Touraine
• Picnic dinner from food obtained in Blere
• Kids played on the swing set at the B&B

Friday June 26
• Toured the Chateau du Chenonceau in the morning*
• Toured the Chateau du Clos Luce in the afternoon
• Dinner of pasta with sausages from the butcher in Blere

Saturday June 27
• Drove from La Croix-en-Touraine to Beynac (400 km)
• Settled into our gite
• Dinner of roast chicken from butcher in Beynac with potatoes and veggies

Sunday June 28
• Market day in Saint-Cyprien, kids played at the playground in the town center
• Swimming in the Dordogne River at the beach in Vitrac in the afternoon
• Dinner of Toulouse sausage from the butcher and market veggies

Monday June 29
• Toured Grotte de Lascaux II in the morning*
• Toured La Roque Saint-Christopher after lunch
• Toured the Elevage du Bouyssou goose and duck farm in the early evening*
• Dinner of eggs with lardons over greens

Tuesday June 30 (Very Hot Day!)
• Toured the Gouffre de Padirac in the morning*
• Toured La Foret des Singes after lunch*
• Dinner of pork ribs from the Beynac butcher and veggies grilled on the barbeque*

Wednesday July 1 (Very Hot Day!)
• Toured Castlenaud-la-Chapelle in the morning*
• Swimming in the Dordogne River at the beach in Vitrac in the afternoon
• Dinner of pork ribs and Toulouse sausages from the Beynac butcher and veggies grilled on the barbecue

Thursday July 2
• Market day in Domme, toured Domme in the morning
• Canoed the Dordogne River between Vitrac and Beynac after lunch*
• Toured La Roque-Gageac during canoe ride
• Dinner of duck confit from Beynac butcher, eggs, and greens

Friday July 3 (Very Hot Day!)
• Toured Chateau de Beynac in the morning
• Swimming in the Dordogne River at the beach in Vitrac in the afternoon
• Dinner of pork ribs and sausages from the Beynac butcher and veggies grilled on the barbecue

Saturday July 4 (Happy Independence Day!)
• Drove from Beynac to Tarascon (500 km)
• Saw the Canal du Midi at the rest stop along the way
• Settled in to our gite
• Swam in the pool

Loire Valley and Dordogne
Matt and daughter at Clos Lucé