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Day 11 July 20, 2007

Day 11 July 20, 2007
Cassis, France

Cassis, France


We ate breakfast in the hotel restaurant (cereal and coffee) then set out on foot to see Van Gogh’s influence on Arles. We saw his room and the Place du Forum where he painted Starry Night. We walked around the perimeter of the Forum then found some fun shops – Emma was relieved to find shopping in Arles! We ate a small lunch at a sidewalk cafe then shopped a bit more before heading back to our hotel to load up the car. We tried to take the car back to a shop in the old town where Emma had found a purse she wanted to buy. You have never seen such narrow streets! While trying to navigate back to the shop, Matthew added some “decoration” to the bottom of the car’s passenger doors when he backed into a low concrete pillar! Oops! Anyway, we made it out of Arles and headed on to Cassis. What a beautiful port town! It’s situated right on the Mediterranean Sea and is surrounded by these incredible rock formations known as calanques. Our first stop was the Tourist Office to find out where to purchase boat tickets to tour the calanques. The young woman working there was American, so she gave us great info! We had to walk back to the center of the port to a kiosk to buy the tickets and just made it onto the last boat of the day! We sat on the top level of the boat and had an amazing view (and amazing breeze) – the weather was spectacular! We saw five different calanques along with many sailboats, speedboats, and even Sea-Do’s. The commentary on the boat was in French, so it wasn’t too helpful. The entire ride lasted about 65 minutes. After our boat tour, we left Emma in the port area to check out the shopping while we drove to our hotel to check in. The young woman at the reception desk also spoke excellent English – turns out she works at a Sun Valley resort 6 months out of the year. We were staying at Le Jardin d’Emile, a small provincial hotel situated above the port. Our room was on the top floor (no elevators!) and was plenty spacious for the three of us. The bathroom was entirely made of concrete! Matthew and I walked back into the port area and met Emma at Romano, a seafood restaurant recommended by a TripAdvisor.com poster. The whole area reminded me of Lesvos in Greece – tons of boats, fresh fish at the restaurants, lots of people-watching opportunities. After a good meal, we walked around the port to see some local crafts, jewelry, and art sold by local artists. Emma and I got a crepe sucre at a sidewalk stand that was good but not as good as the ones in Paris. We walked down onto the pebbly beach and dipped our toes into the Med – brrrrrr! Then it was time to head back to our hotel to sleep.


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