Tag Archives: Mediterranean sea

Carro, Bouches du Rhône, Wednesday 5th August 2015

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The attractive and shady aire at Comps

The attractive and shady aire at Comps on the Gardon River

We did make it to Comps and what a wonderful aire it is too! We found a nice large spot under the trees just a few metres from the river Gardon and we knew immediately we were going to love it there and that we’d stay put for a couple of days, which in the end turned into 3 and only left because we were getting very low on provisions and also needed to fill up with water. The aire costs 6 a night, but the guard who collects the fees didn’t turn up on Sunday night, so we had a day for free!

Our large pitch in the shade

Our large pitch in the shade

We had arranged to meet John and Julie there and they turned up at lunchtime on Monday, which made our stay all the more fun and special. Together we enjoyed a few swims in the river and Julie was kind and strong enough to row the boat for the two of us while we soaked up the sun and admired the views and the boys stayed on the shore.

Julie at the helm!

Julie at the helm!

John and Julie enjoying a refreshing swim

John and Julie enjoying a refreshing swim

The rest of the time, we just chilled by the vans, sharing our drinks and food and we were lucky enough to join them for their 31st Wedding Anniversary last night, which we celebrated with some Gin and Tonics and a chilli con carne, plus the usual glasses of wine and cheese and biscuits. And a good time was had by all!

Celebrating John and Julie's Wedding Anniversary

Celebrating John and Julie’s Wedding Anniversary

Adonis even enjoyed a spot of fishing and caught this little beauty: a Golden Orfe. The first of its kind he’s ever caught.

A proud Adonis with his Golden Orfe

A proud Adonis with his Golden Orfe

Golden Orfe

Golden Orfe

The only thing missing from Comps is a proper store to stock up on food and drinks, as they only shop there didn’t sell alcohol and Adonis and I had to cycle to the nearest town of Beaucaire, about 3 miles away, where there is a very good Intermarché which catered for our needs very well indeed.

We left Comps this morning after queuing up for a while to empty the grey water tank and top up with fresh water, as there were several vans leaving at the same time, and we headed south towards Arles and from there on the N113 and N568 to Martigues and finally the D5 to Carro.

Busy Carro's beach on a very hot day

Busy Carro’s beach on a very hot day

The bay from a different angle

The cove from a different angle

There were a few spaces left at this large aire on the Mediterranean, but as we arrived just after 1 pm, all the spots facing the sea were taken and we are now parked more towards to middle, but that’s not a major problem for we’ve spent most of the time snorkelling, first in the little cove and later right by the aire, where the sea is more open, but still wonderful for spotting sea life, with lots of different fish, little and large and of every colour imaginable and I even saw an octopus!

The beach closer to the motorhome aire and the open Mediterranean sea, still great for snorkelling

The beach closer to the motorhome aire and the open Mediterranean sea, still great for snorkelling

And with a stunning sunset to boot, what’s not to like?

The beginning of a stunning sunset

The beginning of a stunning sunset

The WOW factor sunset

The WOW factor sunset

This is truly a magnificent stop for a couple of days for only 10 a night with water included but no electricity. Payment is at machine on entrance, where you’re given a receipt with a code for the exit gate.

Tomorrow, we are going to Sommières, between Nîmes and Montpellier.

Carro, Bouches du Rhône, Friday 9th August 2013

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Motorhome aire at Carro, right by the Mediterranean

Motorhome aire at Carro, right by the Mediterranean

 

 We have made it to the Mediterranean at last and it’s only taken us 5 weeks! We’ve been here for 2 days at the motorhome aire on Quay Vérandy. We thought this aire was actually going to be in Martigues, which is where we were hoping to stay, but after driving around in Martigues looking for it without success, we entered the co-ordinates given on the aires guide book (‘Le Guide Officiel Aires de Services Camping Cars’: Lat 43º 19′ 46” N Long 5º 2′ 23” E) and it brought us here, about 6 or 7 miles further south!

Taking a walk on the rocky landscape

Taking a walk (and a beer) on the rocky landscape – motorhome aire in background

 

The drive from St Remy de Provence was very easy, following the D99 west to join the D570 south to Arles and from there gently south east on N113 and N568. We just had a quick stop at Supermarché to stock up on food and we were here for 12 noon.

 

Carro

Carro beach

 

It’s still hot here, but very windy, maybe experiencing some of that famous Provençal Mistral, so much so that the wind pushed the motorhome off the levelling blocks earlier on when we were actually inside! It definitely rocked us like never before!

 

Cove and beach

Cove and beach – great for snorkelling

 

Still, it’s been very sunny for the last couple of days and we have enjoyed a few swims in the warm Mediterranean sea. We have also made the most of our snorkelling gear and have enjoyed a very peaceful time spotting the various fish around the rocks surrounding the beach. There is something very special and magical about swimming with the fish, oblivious to everything else, listening only to the sound of your breathing: it’s almost like being on another planet.

 

Strange sights at the fish market

Strange sights at the fish market

 

Carro is mainly a fishing village and this morning we bought some mussels directly from one of the port’s fish stalls by the aire. It was definitely the most popular stall in the market and we had to queue for a few minutes to get our kilo, which I cooked à la Marinière for lunch: fresh and delicious!

 

Preparing the mussels for lunch.  Can't get them fresher than that!

Preparing the mussels for lunch. Can’t get them fresher than that!

 

 

We feel really privileged here on this aire right by the sea: we’re a mere 50 metres from the water’s edge and just 5 minutes’ walk from the little beach in the cove, nicely sheltered and supervised during the day. It’s funny, though, how only around the corner from here, in the open sea, it’s really rough and a few people are enjoying windsurfing and body boarding in the strong current and waves.

 

The rough sea round the corner, perfect for windsurfing, etc

The rough sea round the corner, perfect for windsurfing, etc

 

This aire costs 10 a day, payable at the entrance by credit card: same system as in Bourget-du-Lac, and there is no electricity either, but plenty of water.

 

I just like this seagull hovering over the boats

I just like this seagull in the sun

 

Tomorrow we’re heading for a France Passion bull farm in the Camargue, which should be really different to everything we’ve seen so far.

 

Seagulls enjoying a meal

Carro and marina

Gruissan, Aude, Saturday 22nd December 2012

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We’ve made it to the Mediterranean at last after a week on the road from Calais.  It is the first day of sun and blue skies since we left England and it’s also very warm (18°C inside the van at 5 pm!).  I am just loving the eastern light and the fact that we’re facing the sea, where the sun is going down gradually and bouncing off the terracotta and yellow painted buildings: a sight for sore eyes indeed.  We’re just north of the Pyrenees too, in the Languedoc Roussillon region, and we can also see the snow-capped mountain tops, just to make a perfect picture.

Gruissan 036

 

We’ve just been for a long walk around the marina and admired the luxury yachts as well as the holiday homes and tranquility of the place in the winter, but I can imagine that it must be mayhem in the height of summer.

 

Enjoying a walk around the Marina at Gruissan

Enjoying a walk around the Marina at Gruissan

 

Gruissan is just southeast of Narbonne, one of the principal Roman cities in France, and usually a very windy place, but today there isn’t a hint of it anywhere.  We’re off to Portiragnes tomorrow to spend the Christmas holidays with Adonis’s family, but we’re thinking about coming back here afterwards, as it is so idyllic.

 

The huge motorhome aire at Gruissan beach

The huge motorhome aire at Gruissan beach

 

Parked right by the sea with beautiful views of the Pyrennes

Parked right by the sea with beautiful views of the Pyrennes

 

 

Sign at motorhome aire

Sign at motorhome aire, free in the winter

 

 

Yesterday we spent the day in Grisolles, north of Toulouse (junction 68 off the A20 and then south on D820), where we found a motorhome aire not listed on the official guide (Le Guide Officiel Aires de Services Camping Car), just behind the community hall by the Garonne canal.  It had lots of spaces for motorhomes, a water tap and facilities to empty grey water and toilet, but no electricity, and it’s FREE!

 

Walking along the Garonne canal at Grisolles

Walking along the Garonne canal at Grisolles

 

We went back there after deciding that the aire at Grenade, just a few kilometres down the road from Grisolles, wasn’t really appropriate, being in a small car park by the cemetery, made worse by some road works going, with one side of the road being closed.  It didn’t really feel all that attractive or welcoming at all, so once again it paid off being flexible about our destinations.  So we made a u-turn and were very pleased with our decision.  There were only 4 motorhomes at the aire in Grisolles this morning, including ours, very different from where we are at the moment, which is also huge, but a lot busier: it must be something to do with the Mediterranean weather…

It was absolutely pouring down with rain all day yesterday and we got soaked walking Sasha along the canal, so we really appreciate the dry and warmer weather down here and will be sad to leave this region.

 

The Marina at Gruissan

The Marina at Gruissan

 

We used mainly motorways coming down from Uzerche and it’s good to know that the A20 is largely free until past Brive La Gaillarde at J.54 to Montauban, which was only a couple of euros.  The A61 from south of Toulouse to Narbonne was €20, but we didn’t mind paying for this, as all the motorhomes aires so far have been free, with exception of the €3 at La Suthe-sur-Sarthe, so we can afford to splash on better and faster roads.

 

The Marina

The Marina

 

The Marina

The Marina

 

Gruissan

Gruissan