Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Summer Holiday in France & Spain

Hi Everyone,

We had a great holiday during our stay in France and Spain.

Week One - Cognac, France

After spending 13 hours in the car ride we were so happy to see our holiday cottage, Gite de la Fournarie at this beautiful village which is close to Cognac.  It's a remote area surrounded with lots of fields of vineyards and sunflowers.  It's such a nice break from the city life.

Our cottage is so lovely and such a spacious one and the surrounding is so tranquil.  It just gives one so much peace.

Our Cottage (on the righthand side)

The pool

Now, does the word Cognac ring a bell?  Yes, it's the hard liquor Cognac.  It was at the birth place of Cognac and got so excited when I saw the signs Hennessy, Martell Cognac, Cognac Otard, Camus and Remy Martin. Now, don't get me wrong that I drink but I don't.  When I saw these signs I had to think of my father because he loves to drink them and I wished that he was here with me in Cognac. 

The vineyards in this region are the largest in Europe planted with white vine-plants, are mainly given over to the production of cognac.  In 2007, it reached a record heights with 160 million bottles shipped all over the world where the name is synonymous with luxury and the French art of good living.

Here are the abbreviations on the bottles:

Les V.S (Very Special) or ***(3 star) at least two years old
Les V.S.O.P (Very Superior Old Pale) Reserve : at least four years old
Les X.O (Extra Old) : at least six years old

The tower behind us : St. Jacques Towers (former gateway to town).  Birthplace of King Francis 1st, was born on 1494.  This castle is currently home to an important cognac trading company.

Cognac Museum

Enough of those drinks.  Now, we move on to an abbey called Abbey Fondouce.

The cemetry

As you can see that there are two parts of coffins of which the longer one was a burial place of the monk and the shorter and rounder one was for the brother who buried their monk.  Accordingly, only the head of the brother was buried on this and the rest of the body was on the earth.

The Chapel

Here come my favourite : sunflowers.  They are so big and tall and the leaves are so huge that Marcel called them as wearing their own coats!

In love

La Rochelle, a small city close to the coastline

Taking a break after a long drive

Week Two - Barcelona, Spain
The famous, Sagrada Familia by Gaudi

This un-finished project started in 1882 and stopped in 1926 after Gaudi was hit by a car.  The project was resumed in 1952 and till today it's still constructing.

 This is the newer part of the project

The famous shopping street, La Rambla

Snorkeling Trip

Guess who has the pink flipper


Unesco World Heritage, Bourges Catheral

We were to lucky that the service was ongoing while we were there.

This catheral has stained glass windows throughout the catheral

Thank you for your lovely comments.


Miss V said...

I love this kinda place!!!

Elizabeth Allan said...

What a magnificent vacation Lai-Yoke. Thank you for sharing your fabulous pictures!

Lisa said...

Hi Lai-Yoke! Glad you are back :) What amazing photos! I'm sure they don't do it real justice. Someday I will get to those places.
*sigh* Thanks for sharing!!

Heather Maria said...

Oh wow Lai-Yoke, looks like you had a fantastic holiday! Love seeing all your wonderful photos and reading about your trip!