Tag

france

Bayonne

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Bayonne, where tall half-timbered buildings reflect their greens and reds in the Nive I spent my last Basque days in Bayonne, where tall half-timbered buildings reflect their greens and reds in the Nive and Adour rivers. The riverside has a Middle Ages feel about it. It’s easy to imagine those same narrow buildings gazing down at the water traffic that made the city such an important commercial...

Bygone glory in Biarritz

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Inspecting bikinis on the Grande Plage Biarritz was once synonymous with glamour. Not just your run-of-the-mill glamour, either, but royal glamour.  It started in 1855, when Napoleon III’s wife Eugenie built a palace on the beach.  Empress Eugenie was born in the Spanish city of Granada, and her husband wanted her to have a home close to the border of her old country so she wouldn’t...

Bumming around the French Basque 

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French Basque country Two sun soaked days of freedom on the Côte d’Argent, and then we shifted our base to the riverside town of Bayonne for a taste of French Basque country. It began with a drive through the foothills of the Pyrenees, where small villages locked architecture into a cultural time capsule and grew the staple foods of French Basque cuisine. Espelette shutters painted pepper red...

Crashing waves on the Côte d’Argent 

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Surf’s up on the Silver Coast Winding mountain roads overburdened with speed cameras and toll booths led us over the edge of the Pyrenees and into France, where we’d take a brief detour from Basque country to swim on sparsely populated beaches up the coast. The geography flattened into an unremitting expanse of pine forests sheltered by massive sand dunes, and beyond them, beaches that...

Sommières Daze

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      moonlight echoes through nighttime streets reverberating off walls of limburger cheese and the yellow plaster of peeling bandages over Poseidon blue. razor wounds or Time’s shaving nicks? black cats scuttle through dead-end alleys like fading dreams they dissolve into cognac fumes rain dogs howl and the light peels away as the evening train mourns its passing with a brassy...

Ryan Murdock

Author of Vagabond Dreams: Road Wisdom from Central America. Host of Personal Landscapes podcast. Editor-at-Large (Europe) for Canada's Outpost magazine. Columnist at The Shift. Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

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