Week 4: Finally, France

The drive from Huntingdon down to Folkstone began in less than promising fashion. It was raining and the traffic was slow, tailing back from roadworks. The sun did emerge eventually. We wanted o get the M25 over and done with before stopping. Services were few and far between thereafter and we were not far from Canterbury, so we did not stop at all until we reached the park and ride.

We had lunch at the nearby pub and serviced the van and killed time until we could set off for Folkstone, where we were  moved up the queue and caught the 20:50 hrs shuttle.

Waiting to be called at Folkestone terminal

Farewell to Blighty

We were on the other side almost before we knew it and took the brief ride to Cité Europe where we parked with seemingly dozens of other vans in the car park.

We took advantage of our proximity to Carrefour in the morning and bought a few supplies before setting off for Boulogne-sur-Mer.

The Friterie van across the road provided our lunch of frites and mayo and, fuelled up, we set off to walk into town.

I loved the beach huts.. very “French”

We were looking for a Pharmacy as it appears that off the counter remedies are not a thing in French supermarkets.  Pharmacies don’t appear to be all that common either as we failed to find one.

I was very taken with this monument and the bird upon it

our Carrefour purchases provided a delicious evening meal.

a Special Offer that could not be refused

On Wednesday we left Boulogne and on spotting an Intermarché on the edge of town, we called in for more supplies.

Vincent at the supermarket

Our destination was a  France Passion site not far distant. We wanted to take a scenic route (and it was, very) so turned off Motorways and Toll roads on the satnav. This resulted ultimately in our being routed round a single track road with no passing places but plenty of ditches. We met the school bus coming the other way. He appeared to desire us in the nearest ditch. 

It was a relief to arrive at Les Vergers de Brunembert, where we had a very pleasant stay and fully sampled the produce before moving on to Montreuil-sur-Mer on Thursday for a two night stay on the free Aire there.

We had a fabulous time in Montreuil, which is actually nowhere near to the sea any longer. It is an attractive  historic town within walls which can be walked in a complete circumnavigation. The weather was wonderful and we were able to take full opportunity of walking on the ramparts and indeed without the walls, where a leafy green area surrounds the town. This area can be accessed directly from the Aire, which is a positive bonus for travelling canines. Nell was a happy dog indeed.

A short drive on Saturday took us to Rue and our first French caravan site. We booked in for two nights at Camping de la Maye.

Rue is another pretty town but not at the same level as Montreuil.

Rue

Rue

Rue

and that was our first week in France.

Snail Spaces: Les Vergers de Brunembert (France Passion)

Les Vergers de Brunembert is a small Orchard and Dairy farm, producing cider and cheese products. Up to five vans can be accommodated in a small orchard area, parked beneath the trees. A farm shop is open 09:00 to 19:00 seven days a week. Some English is spoken and a warm welcome given.

The location is highly rural and  very quiet. The farm itself is very pretty.

Our spot for the night was in a small orchard, parked beneath the apple trees, where we were joined later by a van from Belgium.

We bought Cider and Cheese for our supper

There was plenty of walking on quiet lanes for Nell. 

In the morning we returned to the shop to say goodbye and to purchase some honey.