Mulhouse filled with museums
Tip for those who love museums: Mulhouse is filled with museums.
Like any other self respecting town, it has a historical museum (in the magnificent town hall, built in 1552) and a museum for fine arts. That's just the beginning. Mulhouse has a grand total of nine museum. On the one hand, you will find museums with cars (over 400 oldtimers) en trains, on the other hand among others a nature museum and a museum with wallpapers..
Still not enough? Mulhouse kindly remarks you will find over 170 museums in slightly larger area around the city.
Posted by Peter at 07:03 AM [What do you think?]
A bit of North Pole in France
france is such a popular country because of its variety. Apart from arctic areas and deserts, it's got everything.
Eh, no artic areas? In the village of Chaux Neuve (Jura) Claude en Gilles Malloire are doing their utmost best to change that. They are creating theuir own Arctic Park.
For over twenty years now, they are living with a pack of 40 Pole Dogs. In perfect harmony, they say. This week, they added a herd of twenty reindeer.
France 3 took a look and counted three males and 17 females.
Posted by Peter at 07:18 AM [What do you think?]
There's more of France then just France
According to many people (including many French), France is just a piece of Europe. That's not entirely true, because France still has some overseas territories. In good French fast language, they're called Dom-tom: Departements et Territoirs d'outre-mer.
Most far away is New Caledonia at more then 10.000 miles from Paris. That's a long flight, but hey, you're in a different world while still paying with regular euro coins. Wether you go there or to Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guyana, Polynesia of Reunion, Outre Mer is good place to prepare your trip.
Posted by Peter at 07:12 AM [What do you think?]
Match: who has the largest number of crocodiles?
To see lots of crocodiles in France, we used to visit Pierrelatte in the Rhone valley. Since long times, this is place is known for its Crocodile farm. Since last summer, we may also choose for Beauvoir in Normandy, a few miles from the Mont-Saint-Michel. Over there we find the Reptilarium du Mont-Saint-Michel, that has given itself a new name: Alligator Bay (Yes, in English). In a newly built glasshouse live 200 crocodiles.
According to the Reptilarium it is the largest crocodile-community in Europe. we're not so sure about that, since the Crocodile Farm says to have 400 crocodiles living together.
Anyway, be sure to remember crocodiles are dangerous, fast animals with strong jaws. Why, well because except when they're feeded they're just something grey, laying lazy in the sand. Good thing the Reptilarium kept its other reptiles.
Posted by Peter at 07:17 AM [What do you think?]
What you don't see at the Mont-Saint-Michel
The Mont-Saint-Michel is one of Frances major tourist sites. But millions of visitors don't get to see everything for one reason only: it's not there anymore.
for long times, Benedictine monks at the Mont wrote and paiterd about their religious experiences. In the roaring years after the French revolution, the new government took posessions of these papers. Surprisingly, the papers were not burned, but entrusted them to the nearby city of Avranches.
Now in the year iof the Lord 2006 the city is more then happy po posess these papers. They even built a museum, called Scriptorial, to show hundreds of tgese papers. Some of them date back to the 10th century.
The city doesn't make a secret of the way it got the papers. But they also remeind you it was the bishop of Avranches, way back in the 8th century, who gave order to build an abby at the Mont-Saint-Michel. Well, the archangel Michael had to order him three times to do so, but he did, didn't he...
Posted by Peter at 07:10 AM [What do you think?]
Paris subway on newyearseve
The Paris subway will drive as usual on newyearseve until 2.15 a.mm. On six lines, they will even go on until 5.30 a.m.. And the best news: transport is free in this night.
More Paris underground news: starting yesterday, the trains will go on every saturday evening till 2.15, one hour later then they used to. Starting june 23rd, this extension of services will also be available on fridays.
Posted by Peter at 07:14 AM [4 reactions]
Truffles are delicious, that's for sure. However, lots of people never tasted these delicacies. Now, you might visit just some restaurant to eat them, or get a can at your local delicacy store.
The best way however to get to know this black gold is to go to France. Most important, because truffles are at best when they're fresh. Above that, there's a good chanche truffle farmers or tourist offices will show you everything about it.
Take the Lalbenque Tourist Office for example. Every tuesday till march 15th they have truffle sessions. They give explanation about truffles at an exhibition and they show you how dogs find these mushrooms about ten inches in the soil. You finish, of course, by visiting the local truffle market. Enjoy!
Posted by Peter at 07:08 AM [What do you think?]
Addicted to trains
Next Christmas, lots of boys will get model train sets. Sure, because these trains are nice toys. in fact, they're mostly given because dad likes to play with them.
We must warn you: trains are addicting. You may see where such an addiction leads in the tiny village Clecy (Normandy). A farmer over there spend over 30 years building a track, covering 310 square meters. Since you don't make such a thing just for yourself he made it a museum.
And a museum it is. Sixteen trains driving simultaneously, over 240 locomotives on display. There's a stationmaster, who is museum guide as well.
Oh, by the way, the owner will be happy to show how he makes apple cider as well.
Posted by Peter at 07:08 AM [What do you think?]
Need some fancy Christmas balls?
Tired of those old, boring balls in your Christmas tree? Hurry, visit Meisenthal (northwest of Strasbourg) in the Vosges region. Meisenthal is the French national Center of glass art
Of course, you may visit a museum dedicated to the old craft of glass blowers. Of course, there's a large collection of fine glass art-productions. But important for now: each year before Christmas, they design and blow a new series of Christmas balls. Well, eh, the shape may not exactly be a ball, but you can hang them in your tree.
If the shape really is a ball, don't be confused. France 3 discovered some balls that looked exactly like petanque-balls. However, you're supposed not to throw them.
Posted by Peter at 07:17 AM [What do you think?]
History 'live'with playmobil
Please, feel free to take your children with you to a museum. They like it at the Fine Arts Musem in Chartres. Even better: they consider it an honour to make expositions suitable for kids. Now, they've made an exposition about the rich history of Chartres using... playmobil puppets.
For sure, you don't have to visit the museum to enjoy lots of Chartres past. The cathedral (900 years old) and the medieval quarters will wecome you. But there are no traces left of the viking, not to mention the tribe of the Carnigutes that had a harbour here at the Eure long before the Romans came.
Posted by Peter at 07:19 AM [What do you think?]
Foie gras: the battle continues
With Christmas coming up, there's of course a renewed debate about foie gras. However, it's not really a discussion. Fans and opponents hardly listen to opposite arguments.
On the fan site, goose raisers present themselves having an honourable job in an old tradition. Take Yves et Geneviève Boissiere in Frespech (Lot-et-Garonne), who will happily receive you and show you their farm. They even have a foie gras museum.
On the other hand, activists like those at Stop gavage will use any disgusting picture to prove their vision. The word 'gavage' refers to the way of raising goose by forced nutrition.
I've not made a decision yet: yes, it's horrible what they do to goose. And yes, foie gras is delicious...
Posted by Peter at 07:08 AM [2 reactions]
The Land of Oz exists in the Alps
We're so sorry to destroy a fairy-tale. The land of Oz exists. And no, there are no wizzards at all.
You will find the land of Oz in the French Alps, 35 miles beyond Grenoble, next to the famous Alpe d'Huez. Oz en Oisans consists of ten hamlets and a ski resort in a bewitching mountain landscape.
In winter, it's all about skiing in Oz. The slopes are part of the Les Rousses area with 140 miles of downhill pleasure.
In summer, the land of Oz is about sports to. If you like mountainbiking, you will find the worlds longest downhill track, the Megavalanche, attractive. But you may also do some hiking or canyoning.
Posted by Peter at 07:15 AM [What do you think?]
Christmas markets? Strasbourg!
It's only the 5th of december, but in France Christmas markets have already started. There are lots of them all over the country, so it's hard to choose.
It's impossible to see them all, so there may be better ones, but our choice is the Strasbourg Christmas market. This is a good place to stroll around, if only for the imposing cathedral and the many, many timber framed houses. They're all in special Christmas lights these days.
Above that, this market is not just a huge trading place. Craftsmen show their skills and there are lots of cultural events. Some actors even let you visit the land of Oz. Oh, and don't forget to taste the bredles, little fancy-cakes made after local recipe.
The Christmas market of Strasbourg is open until january 4th.
Posted by Peter at 07:07 AM [What do you think?]
Evacuation of a ski lift
Every skier knows the feeling: the chair-lift stops, just when your halfway up. In most cases the lift starts again after a few minutes, seeming ages. But what if the chair-lift is really defective?
You may experience that from january 13th to january 20th in Les Arcs. The lift operator opens doors that usually are reserved for staff in order to show the world behind the screens of a ski resort. As a demonstration, an evacuation of a chair-lift will be organized. You may have a trip on a slope-bully as well...
Posted by Peter at 07:14 AM [2 reactions]