Tag Archives: Cormoranche-sur-Saone

St André-sur-Vieux Jonc, Ain Department, Saturday 27th July 2013

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Although we didn’t plan it this way, this has turned out to be the Holiday of the ‘Wine Routes’.

 

Following the Wine Routes.  Chardonnay grapes

Following the Wine Routes. Chardonnay grapes

 

After enjoying an afternoon walk around the vineyards at Merceuil and our Frankfurters with a cool Bourgogne Rouge in the evening, we carried on south the following morning on the D19 to Calon-sur-Saône, the N6 past Tournus and the D56 slightly south west to the motorhome aire at Lugny, travelling through beautiful Chardonnay country and the Chardonnay village itself, where the wine gets its name from.

 

Passing through Chardonnay

Passing through Chardonnay

 

It was an easy drive and we were there before 11am, which is a good thing, as travelling in the middle of the day in this heat is very unwise. The motorhome aire at Lugny is just outside a very simple and cheap campsite, with loads of shade, so we opted for the latter, as the former was in full-on sun and not really very sensible this time of year, and for the sake of €10 for the campsite it really was a non-brainer decisions.

 

Our shady spot at camping de Lugny only €10 a night.

Our shady spot at camping de Lugny only €10 a night.

 

After lunch, we walked down the hill to explore Lugny itself and ended up at the local Chardonnay Visitors’ Centre and wine tasting shop, totally unplanned, of course! Being unable to decide which variety we enjoyed the most, we settled on a selection of 6 different bottles, which we intend to take back home to England if we don’t succumb to temptation in the next 5 weeks.

 

Enjoying the views over Chardonnay country

Enjoying the views over Chardonnay country

 

View from the road outside Lugny campsite

View from the road outside Lugny campsite

 

The Chardonnay Visitors' Centre at Lugny

The Chardonnay Visitors’ Centre at Lugny

 

We really enjoyed the extremely quiet and cool campsite at Lugny and the fact that there was nobody at the Reception hut to book customers in, relying on people’s honesty once again to put their money for their stay in the envelopes provided, to be inserted in the postbox by hut, just like with the wine the night before at the France Passion site in Merceuil. I just love this laid-back and trusting attitude of the local folk in this part of eastern France.

 

A heavy walk back to campsite after purchasing our wine

A heavy walk back through vineyards to campsite after purchasing our wine

 

 

There was a storm in the night which seemed quite strong and intense for a few minutes, but which I believe sadly heavily damaged some of the vineyards around Beaune, where we’d been the night before, and I understand that the damage could run into thousands of euros in this area that produces some of the finest wines in the world!  What a shame!  I do hope they’ll be able to make up for it somehow.

 

Cluny

Cluny

 

On Wednesday morning, 24th July and Adonis’s birthday, we paid a visit to the historic town of Cluny, following the D82/D15 slightly south west, where we visited the famous Benedictine Abbey and walked around the old streets.  Amazing to think that the monks here had so much power they practically ruled Europe for centuries in the Middle Ages.

 

The Benedictine Abbey at Cluny

The Benedictine Abbey at Cluny

 

From a different angle

From a different angle

 

 

And another angle

And another angle

 

We left Cluny late in the morning for our short drive to Cormoranche-sur-Saône in the Ain Department, about 4 miles south of Macon, as we had been quite impressed with the campsite/base de loisirs here last year. Once again, we really enjoyed the cooling lake for swimming, fishing and rowing our boat and there are, of course, lots of entertainment for young families, including the huge inflatable castles of various shapes and descriptions.

 

The lake beach at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

The lake beach at Cormoranche-sur-Saone with children’s entertainment in the background

 

We had intended to stay 5 nights, but unfortunately, this time round it turned out to be quite noisy in the evening, first with our ‘neighbours’ talking and laughing until the wee hours in the morning, then a duo playing and singing on the beach until 11.30pm and last night a disco that went on till midnight. Although we appreciate that some people enjoy this type of entertainment in a campsite, it is not what we really look for whilst camping, so being Saturday today, we thought they might have another noisy ‘soirée’ and we voted on making a move. The 3 nights here cost us €62: not bad for high season.

 

Beach and larger lake at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

Beach and larger lake at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

 

Sailing and pedal boats at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

Sailing and pedal boats at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

 

An unexpected visitor in the evening at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

An unexpected visitor in the evening at Cormoranche-sur-Saone

 

 

After doing a quick shop at Super U in Pont-de-Veyle, we headed for the lakes a bit further south east on D2.  We first tried Parc des Oiseaux by Villars-les-Dombes, but couldn’t wild camp there and we didn’t fancy another campsite, so we tried other lakes around the area with no success, as parking wasn’t available. As it was almost lunchtime, we decided to head north again on D1083 to this aire just south of Bourg-en-Bresse, which has proved to be just right for us, with shade under the trees and a water supply with a hose, which I’ve just used to have a cold shower to cool off a bit. It’s still 34 °C inside the motorhome in the shade.

 

The free aire at St André-sur-Vieux Jonc

The free aire at St André-sur-Vieux Jonc

 

This aire is free with free water and emptying facilities, but no electricity; the bays are clearly separated by grassy patches and bushes and have gravel pitches: not bad at all!

 

We’re going to try another France Passion site tomorrow at Hauteville-Lompness before heading for the lake at Aix-les-Bains in the Savoie Department.

Domaine de la Montmalle, Saint Montan, Dept de L’Ardeche, 31st July 2012

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Domaine de la Montmalle old farmhouse

 

We are now at a very peaceful and charming France Passion site in Ardèche.  They specialise in Syrah and Carignan wines, as well as olive oil, honey, jams and marmalade.   We’ve just been to the little shop and had a long chat with the owner, Francine Robin, who is very friendly and hospitable and who came to greet us the moment we arrived.  We really enjoyed listening to her talk so passionately about her products and how she renovated the farmhouse with the help of her friends and family, as it had been neglected for many years, and she showed us pictures of before and after.  We also tried a couple of her wines and bought 6 bottles of her wines ‘Peiro’ and ‘Defi de Femme’ (Domaine La Montmalle) and a jar of jam.

 

Our morning parking spot

 

 

We parked under the shade of a tree when we first arrived just after midday, but Francine told us we could move to the adjacent field later on when the shade moved around.  The farm itself, like the village of St Montan, dates back to medieval times, which is evident on the architecture of the farm building, previously a summer chateau of the local aristocracy, and its surrounding walls.

 

Our evening parking spot

 

 

In the morning, we went back into the farm building to say our goodbyes and Francine seemed quite touched and emotional and she asked us to come back in the future, which we promised to do and most likely will next summer.  It’s so nice to meet real hard-working people who care so much about their products and work with pride!  These are the people who really matter and make a country be successful.

 

 

 

The old farmhouse

Back of the old farmhouse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The old farmhouse

 

We spent 5 days at the campsite in Cormoranche-sur-Saone and made the most of the lake for swimming, fishing and rowing our inflatable boat.  We also witnessed a mighty storm on Saturday afternoon that helped cool down the earth a bit.  I managed to use the internet for an hour every morning, which was enough to keep in touch with friends and family.

Yesterday morning, we left for another France Passion site at Roussillon, which was fairly easy following the D906 to Villefranche-sur-Saone, where we joined the A6 south, past Lyon and Vienne, where we came off at J9 onto the N7 to Roussillon.

 

Le Clos de Mont Vinon

View through our window at Le Clos de Mont Vinon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The France Passion stop at Le Clos du Mont Vinon is somewhere between Rouissillon and Agnin on the D131C from the police station roundabout and wasn’t all that obvious to find, as we made it all the way to Agnin and had to turn back until we saw said road.  When we got there, we were disappointed to find a locked gate and no signs of life, so we couldn’t introduce ourselves as we are supposed to do, but decided to stay in the lovely area allocated to motorhomes.  We tried several times, but we never saw or heard anyone around and couldn’t buy any of the local products, as we like to do.

It was mainly quiet and peaceful, except for a neighbour using a chainsaw for about 2 hours in the afternoon that almost made us leave the place, but as we started putting things away, he suddenly stopped and we stayed put for the night.

We thoroughly enjoyed a Boeuf Bourguignon that we’d bought at Leclerc at St Georges-de-Reneins, north of Villefranche-sur-Saone, which was utterly delicious and tender, and then we set for the night and watched another episode of Mad Men.

 

 

A quick stop for a drink at Canelle