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A few stars in Provence and other nice things

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Old May 3, 17, 3:32 pm
  #16
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Well, Les Baux is a fantastic place, as you discovered. But the Hotel de Manville is a cr*p place. Plenty of better options at much better prices. You should have looked at Mausanne-les-Alpilles....

I notice that of all the restaurants you have selected, only one is not on the coast and massively over-priced for indifferent food.... (Avoid Rebuchon at all costs!) That one is Le Vivier in l'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, where the food is good but the decor of the room leaves a lot to be desired (and there is nowhere to park).

You should be looking at places like Les Chenes Verts (Bajade) for astounding cuisine at really good prices, or any of a dozen other 1-star restaurants in the region, most of which are excellent.
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Old May 3, 17, 3:38 pm
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Originally Posted by 1P View Post
That one is Le Vivier in l'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, where the food is good but the decor of the room leaves a lot to be desired
In fact this was the only restaurant I didn´t like with excemption of design. Terrible food. Liked Robouchon

P.S. There are some not at the coast
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Old May 3, 17, 3:54 pm
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Aix-en-Provence

For many people Aix-en-Proence is a Hot-Spot. In my eyes it´s a nice city but by not the most impressive in the region.

Here some impressions:










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Old May 3, 17, 4:08 pm
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Aix-en-Provence -Cathedrale

The Cathédrale St-Sauveur is the most importent church in the city with a nice gothic porch.


Modern font


Chapel


Nave



Centrepiece "Triptych of the Burning Bush", by Nicolas Froment


Some more art


Organ
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Old May 3, 17, 4:18 pm
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Aix-en-Provence - Tapestry museum

In the Archbishops Palace is the Tapestry Museum which is quite well-known. A nice museum for a short visit.









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Old May 4, 17, 3:01 pm
  #21
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Marseille - Notre Dame de la garde

Notre Dame de la garde is a popular pilgrim church high over Marseille and THE landmark of the city. When we reached the parking space we spotted some soldiers with automatic guns, the place was strongly guarded. In the evening we had to hear about the attack at Champs Elysees, so it´s not without reason.
After we left the car we first enjoyed the beautiful view:




The basilic:



The views from the second level were also stunning:








Some details at the entrance to the crypt:


The crypt:


Views from the third level:









The church from inside:






Main attraction at Notre Dame de la garde is the view, the church itself is from 1864 and Neo-Byzantine. Art-historically are surely more interesting churches in Marseille.
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Old May 4, 17, 4:27 pm
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Le Petit Nice - Marseille

Time for Lunch!
After Notre Dame de la garde we made our way to Le Petit Nice – Passedat. The restaurant got his first star in 1977, the second in 1981 and the third in 2008. As a 3 star I had to try it...
The way to Le Petit Nice which is also a hotel is “romantic”. First I nearly missed the entrance as the street is very small.


I took this picture later, at the time of my visit the street was full with parked cars and it was very difficult to drive thru. After I handled this problem I had to pass a second street which was even narrower. It was barely possible to pass it with my A6, with a S-Class or a SUV I doubt it´s really possible. Next time I would probably park on the main street and walk. At least I wouldn´t drive it with my car and it´s sharp tyres.

After we reached the gate it opened and a bell boy took our car. The hotel/ restaurant is beautiful located with direct seaview.



The restaurant is bright, but not really fancy.



In fact it shows some wear and tear and is in need of a renovation.


Therefor the view from our table was great, even if it was such sunny that I had to eat with my sunglasses.


So so non-alcoholic cocktail:


We took the Lunch-menu which is priced with 100,00 € per person. That was what we got:



Nice start


Good bread with seaweed.




The oyster was very strong in taste, carpaccio was fine. My company didn´t like both and couldn´t even eat the oyster. Sad, but I doubled my experience....


A fresh tatar with an interesting smoked flavour – I liked it, my company not. So I ate 2....




This dish was one of the best tuna I ever had with a very nice and fresh sauce. Nevertheless it could have get some more attention in detail regarding presentation as you can see. As my company don´t really like raw fish I had 1 and a half.



A solid dish.

Desert


Over all a good one with fresh flavours, but not the greatest one of my life.
Funny was that it came with a beef jus on the side. I told them we don´t eat meat at the beginning. So they brought my company one without it, but obvious they couldn´t imagine that a male really don´t eat meat.

Post-desert

Interesting in a positive way! Wasn´t fishy by the way....

Petit fours


I liked the food, it was a enjoyable experience. Nevertheless I´m not sure if I would rate this place with 3 stars, it´s nearer on 2 stars in my eyes. The view on the sea is great, the restaurant itself could get some renovation. Service was attentive and professional. My company didn´t eat very much, as many dishes were raw and she found the kitchen too experimental.
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Old May 5, 17, 2:24 pm
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Cassis

Cassis is a small but very touristy town at the beginning of Route des Cretes. Definitively not a must-see, but a nice stop for 30 minutes or so.




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Old May 6, 17, 8:09 am
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Route des Cretes

Route des Crétes is a panoramaroad which runs along the Calanques. From the road you have very nice views, which you can enjoy from many viewpoints. Perhaps not as spectacular as other famous panoramaroads, but nevertheless nice.











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Old May 6, 17, 9:04 am
  #25
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Originally Posted by offerendum View Post
Many cars in this region simply show: "I can´t drive" or "I like dents in my car, looks much better"
LOL. Great report and pics as always offerendum. Loved the supermarket parking pics and story. But you did park taking up 4 spaces.

Agree with GoSh4rks. No doubt that driver of the silver Opel parked like that to send a message. Pretty ballsy too.
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Old May 6, 17, 10:22 am
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Originally Posted by SFO777 View Post
LOL. Great report and pics as always offerendum. Loved the supermarket parking pics and story. But you did park taking up 4 spaces.

Agree with GoSh4rks. No doubt that driver of the silver Opel parked like that to send a message. Pretty ballsy too.
Thanks, what a honor.

@ parking: Later it´s getting funny a second time
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Old May 7, 17, 6:50 am
  #27
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Palais des Papes - Avignon

One of the most anticipated sights of the journey was the Pope´s Palace in Avignon. I ordered tickets in advance “to skip the lines” with fixed date and time, when we arrived was the ticket-counter completely empty.
From outside the Palace is impressive:



On the left the cathedral:


The courtyard:




Modern art:


The furnishing is mostly lost the halls are empty. From the inside the Palace is not as impressice as from outside.




Monuments:




The chapel:



The Palace is indeed impressive and a must see. Don´t expect a furnishing like the Renaissance-Palaces in Vatican, it´s something totally different.
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Old May 7, 17, 1:52 pm
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So many wonderful photos, offerendum - some of the view shots are just spectacular. Thanks for a great report
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Old May 7, 17, 2:08 pm
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Originally Posted by lb8001 View Post
So many wonderful photos, offerendum - some of the view shots are just spectacular. Thanks for a great report
Thanks a lot!
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Old May 7, 17, 4:00 pm
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Pont Saint-Bénézet - Avignon

Second famous sight in Avignon is Pont Saint-Bénézet. In fact it´s a ruin of a bridge. We had a combined ticket with the Palace (alone it´s 5,00 €, surcharge to Pope´s Palace 2,50 €).
From the street it looks like other bridges, only quite useless as a water-jump-end bridge.....


The entrance seen from the road


and from the bridge:



The bridge in all its glory:


Views:



On the bridge you find the small double-chapel Saint-Nicolas and Saint-Bénézet.




View from the lower level:


Uuuups


OK, I can´t share total enthusiasm for this sight, but if you are in Avignon it´s part of the program. Not really to say much against it, it´s simply not as spectacular as it´s reputation.....

Last edited by offerendum; May 7, 17 at 5:33 pm
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