Day Nineteen – A walk through some woods and a secret beach on a man-made lake.

We woke to the familiar feeling of warm sunlight pouring through the camper roof canopy. The bad weather that had surrounded the region had finally left, leaving clear skies and a feeling of returning warmth.

Luckily for us, Willow had managed to reserve some croissants for us, so I toddled off the the shop to collect them. This morning already felt like it was going to be a much better day.

We set of a second time for the walk, and within fifteen minutes, we had already made it to the same point we had reached the day before. Although we had embarked on the same journey, this walk already felt completely different compared to yesterday’s attempt.

For starters, the stream we walked up yesterday, now resembled a path.

Also, although I was once again drenched, this time it was my own sweat rather than a continuous down pour (I’m not 100% sure what was more comfortable though?)

With the rain gone, we were rewarded for our climb us with grand sights of the surrounding area.

We followed the waymarks towards an old monastery.

As we had already made an effort to scale the locked fence yesterday in the rain, we decided to carry on with the walk.

The walk took us round to an advantage point overlooking the camp site that we were parked in.

Can you see Ruby?

How about now?

A panoramic view from the cliff.

The walk shortly entered the forest. Willow was particularly keen to see this walk because some of the rock cliff had weathered to create unusual shapes.

Willow is quite proud of the fact that she completes many our our walks in flip flops. However, due to the large amount of rain and the large amounts of people who were also completing the same walk as us, the path had become more of a quagmire. It wasn’t long until she had to abandon her choice of footwear and brave a section of the walk barefoot.

Although she hated the experience, it wasn’t long until she was back into her groove

I managed to get up close and personal with a local cicada (the noisy bugs).

The walk looped around the opposite side of the cliff and then we started making our descent back down to the camp site.

Once back at the van, our phones were out once again to find our next destination. Because we started the walk so early, we still had a large part of the day left. I had identified a man made lake in on our route towards Dieppe, and so we decided to have another beach afternoon.

Lac de Villefort was only around an hour away, and so we would have plenty of time to enjoy the sun.

The lake is artificial, and was created by building a dam across the Alier river.

We soon found a spot on the small beach and carried on topping up our tans.

Once we were finished, we had found a walk around an extinct volcano that we really wanted to try, and so headed off to another France Passion site that was on the way.

Leaving the grand lake, we had to stop to admire the craftsmanship that had resulted in a small mountain paradise.

We arrived at our France Passion spot, which was again somebody’s garden. They didn’t speak English, however they invited us in to their house to have a look at the produce they made. We bought two jars, just to feel better about sleeping in their garden.

For tonight menu, we had another recipe from the Cafe Paridiso cook book. This time we had selected a pepper and tomatoes stew, accompanied with goats cheese ciabatta. This time it looked a lot better and tasted great as well.

Tomorrow, an extinct volcano surrounded by a lake awaited us.

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