Thought we’d better watch the programme about Prince Charles last night. Thought he came across better than I expected, having heard about his alleged demands! Ahead of his time even.
Very peaceful Aire, and no street lighting!
Went to sleep to the sound of rain, and woke up to it too! It did clear up about 10.30 this morning so off we went...
Tintin driving today - nearly two hours. Time seemed to drag today for some reason. Maybe we’ve had enough driving for a while! Scenery was stunning at times, especially when there was a bit of sun out, but really dark rain clouds above. Roads - well a mixture of bumpy and smooth. Multiple roundabouts! Sarah & Herc, you’ll be delighted to know that most towns have now put up their Christmas lights in readiness. How many sleeps left?! Arrived at:
Fougères - free
Lovely peaceful Aire (maybe only this time of year!), only 200m from medieval town.
No fresh bread, so last avocado salad - then off to see the sights! I’d done some research and wanted to visit the Château...
First walked all around it, and as it wasn’t open until 14.00, went looking around on the tourist route. Started off in the Church of Saint-Sulpice. For not being a religious person, I do enjoy the absolute silence of some churches - this being one of them. It was built in the mid 11th century, enlarged in the 13th century, then more extensions during the 14th and 15th century - and finally completed in the 18th century.
Found the tourist office, and collected a map (first time I’ve spoken all in French, and the lady also spoke in French even though she knew we were English - short conversation!). Walked down the street which was being re-cobbled - never realized quite how big the stones are! Into next church - Saint-Léonard - first church with ‘modern’ stained glass windows. Bit greedy, having two huge churches in such close proximity! Walked through the public gardens, which being so high up had wonderful views. Walked past the half-timbered houses - almost a shame cars are allowed to park in front - destroys the feel of the place!
We paid our €17 admission to the Château de Fougères - and spent about 90 minutes having our history lesson via the audio included in the price.
The castle was first built in the 11th century, and became a military stronghold of prime importance on the Breton Marchlands. The walls and eleven towers of the fortress enclose an area of two hectares and is one of the best preserved castles in Europe. The quartre moulins - the four wheels of the water-mill were repaired in 2013.
It’s hard to imagine people ever gaining entry. Moat, circular towers dotted with arrowslits, so no blind spots, drawbridge, walls nearly 3m thick, then fortied sanctum within. Another thing we’d not seen before - gaps on the stone floor high up to be able to attack vertically from above - all very sneaky!
Lots of steps going up in the towers, shame it was raining when we were at the top - again would be magnificent views on a good day. However, we could spot Dave!
Overall, think they’d done a really good job 👍 After over three hours wandering around, came back for another cuppa. Good timing - heavens opened again!
We’re planning on going out to eat tonight - let’s hope rain doesn’t stop play!
P.S. just remember to click to enlarge any photo!