Morlaix - The French Stairmaster
May 30, 2012
Nov 07, 2012
We got off the train and went to the "I" (Information Centre) to ask about renting lockers for our bags
. Apparently, in France, that is a foreign concept. The police in France forbid people from locking up luggage at train/bus stations in case of a potential act of terrorism. Ok, but what do we do with our 20kg children then? Fortunately a very nice French boy, who was looking for storage as well, suggested that we follow him into the old town to the Tourist Info Centre. The old town isn't really that close to the train station, so thankfully we had a guide to lead us down a bunch of winding roads and stairs. It quickly resonated in our minds what a climb we would have going back to the train later on. Fun times. Once we got to the Tourist Info Centre, the girls there were sweet enough to let us store our bags in an office. They loaded us up with info and maps and off we went. We really only had about 3 1/2 hours to wander around before we had to head back to catch our next train, so we glanced over the map and made a game plan. We walked along the sightseeing trail on the map and saw the massive multi arch bridge. All the trains that run through Morlaix pass over this bridge. Then we saw an old fountain, the theatre, a really old church, and the old town centre (amongst some other small sights). We browsed through some shops in the centre for a little while before we grabbed some sandwiches for the train ride to Rennes. I was dreading the hike up those stairs with our backpacks as we made our way back to the tourist centre. But, looking back, it was kind of like a free boot camp! And oh boy did we get a work out! My legs were burning! By the time we got to the top at the station we were both sweaty and panting for air. It felt good though afterwards, like we just finished a really hard fitness class. Must work off the ice cream and French goodies somehow, right? :)
One of the best ways to use a rail pass is by stopping in towns or cities on the way to your final destination. In one "travel day" you can get on and off different trains as much as you want. It is a fantastic way to see smaller places that you may have just passed through otherwise. So alot of the times when we head to a new destination we look at what other stops correspond with the train schedule and we try to make it work. Such was the case with Morlaix. We left beautiful Concarneau and headed towards Rennes, but stopped along the way at Morlaix. Morlaix is another small town in the Brittany region and is well known for it's two-tiered stone arch bridge, as well as it's old town centre. We didn't realize it is also known for steep hills and many, many stairs.