Tag: Les Halles

Raining in the south of France? Five top tips to beat the grey sky blues.

I have finally realized that  certain things in  life cannot be changed. My legs will never be long and beautiful and much to my chagrin, they will always be a touch more footballer than model but life goes on regardless.

The weather equally escapes our control. Most of the time we grimace and bear it but on holiday we want to be grinning……Nobody wants rain during a treasured break, particularly if you are venturing somewhere with a sunny reputation. Who wastes precious bag space on Ryan Air or Easy Jet to bring their rain coat and wellies when you are heading to the south of France?

We can’t change the weather but  we can change our reaction to it. Let’s be honest, moaning does not make you feel better and for most people, it won’t improve your holiday. When guests rent our house, I obsess about the weather, desperate for their holiday to be perfect but there’s nothing I can do to influence the power of the skies.

After a wet Spring in the south of France, the flowers are brimming with happiness, the heat is on  and I’m sure the sun will beat down for the rest of the summer but if on the rare occasion the sky has a little cry, here are my top five tips to beat the grey sky blues in our area:

1. Go and find a delicious indoor market, or food hall. In Nimes, Les Halles, is sensational. Go wild and try some local delicacies you’ve never tried before. Once you have filled your baskets with tasty local produce, zoom back in the car and cook up a feast. Equally delicious inside or out.

Les Halles, Nimes

Les Halles, Nimes

2. Find a fantastic restaurant, order several bottles of  grown up  grape juice and solve the world’s problems. Maybe the sun will be shining after the coffee and cognac, even only metaphorically.

3. Seek out the local Aquarium or Planetarium. Kids love them and at least you know you won’t be missing out on precious sunbathing time. Montpellier has a fantastic newish development called Odysseum. Great rainy day,  family entertainment all in one place – Aquarium, Planetarium. Ice-rink, Climbing centre, Cinema – just thank your lucky stars it’s raining!

4. Both Montpellier and Nimes have some wonderful museums but there are many more museums in the Languedoc. Inspiring places to hide from a deluge. You are spoilt for choice.

5. Ignore the rain and carry on regardless. Unless there’s a storm overhead, the rain needn’t stop you. One rainy summer day, we went canoeing with friends near St Guilhem le Desert, a magical medieval town in the Cevennes. I have no doubt if the sun had appeared it would have seemed even prettier but we didn’t let the clouds ruin our fun.

St Guilhem le Desert

St Guilhem le Desert

At least the weather changes daily, where as I am stuck with my little legs for life!

 

Nimes…….a favourite place nearly on our doorstep.

La Maison Carré

La Maison Carré

Why Nimes?

A charming Roman city oozing sophistication, beauty and culture.

I love the tiny, twirling, twisting pedestrian streets filled with boutiques eager to be discovered; I love the cafés piled onto pavements; the shady squares pulsing with restaurants hidden around each corner. I adore the dramatic fountains which dispel the summer heat.

Remarkably preserved Roman buildings suitably bewilder at every turn and I especially love sitting in the shade,  with a glass of chilled rosé in hand, gazing in awe at Les Arènes, one of the best preserved Roman amphitheaters in the world  – just like being on a film set, yet better because it’s the real deal.  I love gaping at the  beautiful Maison Carré (above) while devouring  ice-cream in the adjacent café. Strolling, exploring in the Jardin de la Fontaine.

The music of the city. The vibe, the elegance, the way of life……..

Top Tips

The indoor food market, Les Halles, is bursting with irresistible local food and atmosphere – better than Harrods food hall any day.

The Ferias of Nimes held in May and September every year, are unique parties celebrating bulls, music and food – not to be missed.

Forget the ghastly tower blocks on the outskirts and head straight for the pedestrian old town with lots of underground parking – easy.

Here is a new App about monuments in Nimes for when you are strolling around.

Where is Nimes?

25 minutes by car from our house via a stunning cross country route – worth the trip for the views alone.

Read more about Nimes here.
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