Normandy 2010

What did we do

I felt a bit guilty bringing the car as the majority cycled and many got up the big hill to Chateau Le Mont Epinguet which was our base in 2010.

Sunday took us east, after all the children love the beaches, so we headed for St Vaast. The very northern part of the Manche penninsular is lumpy so it was an undulating ride to Teutheville-Bocage where the obligatory boulangerie shop lay in wait. Loaded up with euros, severe damage was made to the croissant and tart population and so pleased were the owners that they agreed to open up especially on the way back, try that on with Tesco. Into St-Vaast-La-Hougue where the car booters were out and right towards the beach. It drizzled intermittently but this wasn't going to stop the children and the Watson adults from testing La manche. Back to the boulangerie just before their 1600 opening to dessimate the remaining tarts and load up the panniers. Most of us arrived together, however the scrumping brigade spotting a peach tree in a desserted house couldn't resist and as dusk fell they returned for dessert.

There's a cycleway from Cherbourg to Mont St michel, so on Monday we did the section from Brix to Bricquebec. A disused railway, the surface was great and we arrived in Bricquebec on market day and spent a few hours admiring cheeses, fruits and picniccing in the ruined chateau. We were almost beaten back by James who jogged his bike back to the chateau due to freewheel problems and the children were entertained in the evening by a pack of local very friendly mutts from next door.

Tuesday was forcasted to be lovely so we headed for Cap Levy, and the best beach at anse. We coffee'd at St-Pierre-Eglise before hitting the surf where all of us played in the 3 foot waves in delightful but windy weather. The problem with the chateau being built on the highest point in the peninsular was that it was uphill back, but having gone along the coast, the 2 km section inland was precipitous so the climbing was quickly done. Lester lit the BBQ in the evening and we jostled for space on the grill

Wednesday was wet, so we all went kayakking, after all it couldn't get worse. Up the river from St-Sauveur-le-Vicomte in vessels varying from tiny kayaks to canoes resembling the Ark Royal that were thoroughly unsinkable.

Thursday started well enough, overcast but warm as we headed along the lovely lanes to Quinnerville. At this point the heavens opened, so we aborted plan A (the beach) and headed for the WW2 battery at Azeville, the plan being that it had 100's of metres of 'dry' tunnels. Fought over in 1944 we had a delightful tour and learnt that one missile fired from 15km away scored a direct hit and caused the place to surrender. I'd arranged a meal at Tamerville for 1800 and we arrived, fed on ham, chips and cider before getting back to the chateau in gathering gloom.

The last day and it was wet, wet, wet. Bizarrely the only 3 families who had cars cycled the route to Cherbourg and the fabulous aquarium/submarine/French game Show. The others went to the pool at Valognes or piled into Steves campervan. The sub was enormous, the jellyfish sublime and the French game show...you'll have to visit

So that's it for another year, off to Quentins chateau next year which we visited 3 years ago, fabulous.

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