Islander Becky Bodnar shares some photos of her travel through Europe this summer. The Netherlands and Amsterdam were featured in a Beach Travelers in our July 22, 2016 issue. In this issue, readers will travel with her to a French cave, wine country and into the gardens of Paris.
Orange is a city in southeastern France, 13 miles north of Avignon. It was founded in 35 BC by Roman soldiers and became somewhat of a smaller version of Rome. We visited its ancient theater, which is one of the best-preserved Roman theaters in the world. In July and August, an internationally-known opera and classical music festival takes place in the theater.
Becky Bodnar with friends Bob & Phyllis stand outside the Chauvet Cave replica, that was built at a cost of $59 million and opened in 2015.
The Pont d’Arc is a large natural bridge located in the Ardèche, a very scenic area in south-central France, named after the Ardèche River.
Châteauneuf-du-Pape is a wine region located near Avignon. Named after the “new papal home,” referring to the period of time in the 1300’s when the pope resided in Avignon instead of Rome. We visited Château La Nerthe, one of the oldest estates in the area and one of the first estates to bottle their own wine and to export their wine outside of France.
Château la Nerthe vineyard-A view overlooking the 200-acre vineyard from the terrace of the château.
Underground wine cave houses large, squat French oak barrels as well as historical wines and wine reserved for some prestigious restaurants.
The Jardin du Luxembourg, situated near the Latin Quarter in Paris, is probably the most popular park in the famous city. Marie de Medici, widow of Henry IV, had the Luxembourg Palace built as her new residence. She wanted it to resemble the Pitti Palace in her native Florence and to have a park in the style she had known as a child. The garden today is owned by the French Senate, which meets there. The elaborate garden is known for the picturesque Medici Fountain
The Palais du Luxembourg at the northern end of the garden is the meeting place of the French Senate
The Fountain of Leda, located behind the more famous Medici Fountain, depicts the mythological legend of Leda and the Swan.
The famed Medici Fountain was intended to look as if it had been carved into a grotto.
A close-up view of the Medici Fountain, with the giant cyclops Polyphemus, looking upon Acis and Galatea.
Watch for the third and final installment of Beach Travelers Europe
in next week’s Sand Paper.