lundi 22 juin 2009

The Opal Coast

Thanks to all the long weekends of May, it became possible to take a few welcome trips out of the city.  To really maximize the long weekend we decided to visit some places that weren’t too far by car from Paris.  I shouldn’t have been surprised to find out that there are a good number of really good destinations.  And I particularly enjoyed discovering parts of France that aren’t our usual first choice when making little trips.  One unforeseen consequence of such trips though is that it leaves little time for updating this blog.  Technical difficulties with my computer and internet added to the frustrating delay.  Finally though, things seem to be coming along hence the start of some long over due posts.

The weekend of the Pentecost, our destination of choice was Bruges.  But our route to Bruges took us along some surprisingly beautiful French countryside that I hadn’t encountered before.

Known as the Cote D’Opale (or the Opal Coast), this particular stretch of the French coast runs for 40 km between Calais and Boulogne sur Mer.  It is called the Cote D’Opale because of the beautiful and constantly changing blue-green colors of the sea and sky.  It is spectacular to drive down this coast and watch the unfolding panorama of cliffs and sand dunes and of course the long stretch of beach. It is along this coast that one can see, on a clear day the white cliffs of Dover.  Cap Gris Nez for example is only 28 km away from Dover.  With such a thought in mind, we paused at Cap Gris Nez in an effort to spot the English coast but alas, try as I might, I could not definitively say that I saw the famed white cliffs.  Nonetheless a white speck in the horizon, unmoving and constant amid the ships around it, seemed to me to be the elusive cliffs.  We took our photo souvenirs and then we were away, headed to our Belgian destination.

Here is my (feeble) attempt to capture the other side

Some folks braving the bracing cold air...

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