Day 11, Thursday 4 July, travel to Quimper.

Trip Start Jun 23, 2013
Trip End Jul 11, 2013

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Flag of France  , Brittany,
Thursday, July 4, 2013

Weather: Grey, overcast and very cool. Expected max temp 19C
Hi everyone - greetings from Quimper (pronounced Kim-purr)
We awoke to the usual grey skies, but it was obvious that it had been raining over night.  At 7am there was just a misty drizzle.  The weather has been so disappointing and today even more so as we wished to drive along the coast and walk along the beautiful sea shore.  Our first stop for the morning was a park not far from our hotel.  It contained many pink granite sculptures - very interesting.  As we were walking around the park, the sun started to shine through the clouds.  How fortunate we felt, as the sun has not come out until the afternoon, if at all, during our time in France. We continued on along the coast and mid morning we stopped for coffee and sat outside in the sunshine to drink it.  We hopped back into our car to continue our journey and as we did so, the clouds covered the sky and the sun disappeared for the rest of the day.  Our aim was to get to Quimper early in the afternoon.  As all Tourism Offices only keep detailed maps of cities close to them we decided to stop at a little town, just before Quimper, to get our map, before entering the city to find our accommodation.  The maps that Brad has on his iPad do not have enough detail, particularly the one way streets.  Unfortunately we could not find the Tourism office, so we continued on to see how we would go, just using Brad's maps.  We were successful at entering the city, finding a large map displayed near a parking area and discovering that we were very close to our hotel.  What good fortune!  We drove to our hotel, but at the road where we needed to go to get to our hotel (We could actually see the hotel!) there was a "Do Not Enter" sign so we continued on, thinking that we would just drive around the block.  Wrong!  There were road works everywhere and many streets blocked off.  We pulled over and rang the hotel and they told us to ignore the do not enter sign and park in the multi level  car park close by.  With a great deal more navigating we found where we needed to go and this time noticed a smaller sign, under the do not enter sign that said in French that hotel guests were exempt from not being able to enter the street! We are staying in a 3 star hotel which means: no fridge, no tea and coffee making facilities, no chairs - just one stool, and a little clean room that looks out onto a concrete wall.  We walked into the city to find a place for lunch and then had a quick walk around. We saw a little tourist train and decided to take this 30 minute ride to see some of the city's important features. It was an interesting ride.  By this time, 5pm, Jane was feeling very cold, as she hadn't taken her coat, and tired so she returned to the hotel while Brad continued to explore the city.

11:00pm addition - We have just returned from dinner at a restaurant suggested to us by the receptionist here at the hotel. It was a 3 minute walk across the river and we were able to seated straight away at 8:15pm. There was something on the menu to suit us both and we thoroughly enjoyed our meals. Jane had just the main course but Brad went for the 3 course menu du jour. It was a delicious meal and we ended up chatting with the couple at the table next to us. They were locals enjoying a meal out with the wife speaking more English than her husband. We tried to speak in French but we must have terrible accents because when they repeated French words we had just spoken they sounded sooooo different! They had difficulty understanding us but with pen and paper as well as our little dictionary we had a decent conversation. It was a good night all round! Added just a few pictures of tonight's dinner!

We travel further down the west coast tomorrow before heading to the Loire Valley on Saturday.

Interesting information:
- In our little town of Perros-Guirec there are 2 sets of traffic lights.  This is so unusual as they use round-a-bouts everywhere.  As we have mentioned before, we love round-a-bouts and today when we were unsure of which road to take, we would just go around the round-a-bout a second time.
- At one place where we stopped to take in the beautiful sea side view we noticed a great deal of bracken growing and blackberries too.  It looked so similar to what we see in Australia.  On closer inspection we saw snails eating the plants - they looked just like Aussie snails too!
- We have been amazed at seeing so many council workers working in and out of the cities and towns, tending to garden beds, mowing grass on the sides of the roads, pruning trees and hedges, sweeping streets etc.  At first we thought it may have been just in the towns where Le Tour de France is cycling through, but it is happening everywhere.  So maybe they are getting ready for 14.7.13 or maybe they are just very proud of the appearance of their town.
- We are surprised to see so many hydrangeas being used as mass plantings in towns and on the town outskirts.
- We filled our car with petrol for a second time since we rented it.  At this stage of our travels it has cost us about €90 to go 800 km.  Petrol price today was €1.519 per litre.
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vmjtp on

Hi Jane and Brad

The weather may be overcast but your photos look very artistic with such subdued light. Both your meals look delicious too!


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