Seeing The Tour de France

Tour de France

After all of the doping scandals in the past few years, I think the interest in the Tour de France, the annual bicycle race primarily held in France has waned. While there are still crowds cheering on the riders, especially when they have their final ride down the Champs Elysée in Paris, I have heard comments from locals that it just doesn’t mean a lot to them.

I thought I’d feel the same way until I was in France recently. When I realized I would actually be in the same area as the Tour, I started getting excited. I knew it would be a miracle to actually catch the riders zooming by but thought I would take a chance. I downloaded the map from the Le Tour website and upon my departure from Evian-les-Bains, made my way to the Auvergne-Rhone-Alps area. Continue reading →

What Other Places In France Should You See?

Visit France again Mont Saint-Michel,

At the beginning of the year I listed some of my New Year’s Resolutions for 2016 and while it covered the gamut of some foods, sites, and experiences, I didn’t fully delve into the places that I have yet to visit in France. Places that YOU might not have considered either. Although you might have already visited France once or twice, it is a BIG country and there is so much to see.  So what other places in France should you see? Continue reading →

Active Boomer In France

Chateau du Chambord, France. Active boomer

I’ll never forget Louie, the head caretaker at the school where I was Principal. He used to always say, as we were heading to a classroom, “You move so quickly. I can never keep up with you!”  If Louie saw me today, he still wouldn’t be able to keep up with me. But instead of zipping around a school, I’m running, biking, paddling, hiking or walking long distances in France. I’m an active boomer on a mission. One of the wonderful things about France is that there are so many things to do for the active boomer….or traveller of any age. Continue reading →

Before You Kick The Bucket: 5 Things To Do In France

Hot Air Ballon In The Loire Valley France Bucket List

Do you have a bucket list? A list of travel experiences that you want to do before you die?  I started a list back in 2009 and to my surprise, I have crossed many off the list:

  • riding a camel into the desert (my camel did not smell, nor did he spit)
  • attend a taping of the Oprah Winfrey show in Chicago (yes! 5th row!)
  • run (and drink my way through) the Marathon du Medoc (wine at each water station)
  • get up at sunrise to see Monument Valley in northern Arizona
  • hike in Cinque Terre, Italy

But there are some items on my bucket list that pertain to France and you might consider these for your next trip: Continue reading →

Alternatives To Walking In Paris Or Any City

Alternatives To Walking In Paris

Alternatives To Walking In Paris.  Whaaat? Don’t walk in Paris?

Let me explain.

20 Km de Paris, France alternatives to walking

In October 2014 I was in France for two weeks: one week in Montpellier and one week in Paris, where I ran the “20 km de Paris” race. During my time away, I walked much more than usual….2-8 hours a day. My feet were not used to this and as a result, upon my return home I got a stress fracture in my foot and for the past 5 months I have not run at all until recently.

So, how will I deal with France (and Spain and Italy) in a few weeks when I go back? How can one NOT walk, and walk, and walk in Paris or in any city on your holidays yet still see all the amazing sites?

Guess I will take a lot of “café” breaks; however, I do have a few alternatives to walking in Paris for other travellers who do not like to (or can’t) walk a lot. Here are my suggestions: Continue reading →

What It’s Like To Take A Bicycle Trip In France

Bicycle Trip In France

I have been fortunate to have taken two bicycle trips in France. One took place in August 2002 in the Dordogne and Bordeaux and then in July 2006 in Burgundy with my friend Judy. Both trips were with the British company, “The Chain Gang Cycle Tours” and included breakfast, hotel room, dinner, bikes, and visits to wineries. Each day we did approximately 50 km on relatively flat terrain…. but not always. The most I rode on one day was 69 km. Continue reading →