The Lou Messugo Blog - life in the south of France from a British/Australian TCK's perspective, bringing you French culture, travel on the Côte d'Azur and beyond, expat issues and a little bit of je ne sais quoi all mixed up with a hefty dose of photography.

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20 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in France to visit

Posted by on in Other

Exploring UNESCO World Heritage Sites has become something of a trend in our family over the past few years.  It’s something I’ve always done, albeit sometimes without realising, particularly when much younger, but now it’s something we actively seek out when travelling.  These sites have undergone a rigorous application process to gain their prestigious UNESCO World Heritage status and we want to see why.  Sites can be natural or manmade but not all are beautiful for the premise of the listing is that the place must be of special cultural or physical significance.  This means there are industrial sites, as well as sublimely beautiful natural sites and of course gorgeous buildings/monuments, and there are a huge amount of them: 1052 at time of writing, spread across 165 countries.

UNESCO World Heritage sites France

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Poppies at the Pont du Gard

Posted by on in Sunday Photo

 poppies Pont du Gard UNESCO site France

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Naples with a teenager

Posted by on in European Travel

Sometime last year I decided I wanted to take my older son on a trip for his 16th birthday, just him and me, something I’d never done before.  I’d been brewing the idea for a while ever since a friend took her son away for his 13th birthday; it wasn’t something I’d contemplated before and back then it wasn’t such a fashionable thing to do (this must have been about 9 years ago at least).  My boy’s 13th birthday passed by and the time wasn’t right so it struck me that 16 was the next “big” birthday worthy of celebrating in such a way. 

bay of Naples with Vesuvius

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Until recently I had only been to Fréjus to go to the beach (long, sandy and often windy – good for kite flying).  Once we briefly stopped off on the way home to have a quick look at some of the Roman ruins but only very briefly and about 7 years ago.  So when my parents, visiting from England, suggested a daytrip with the cathedral in mind I thought why not?  It was about time I had a better look at this nearby, relatively unknown, ancient town.

Fréjus Place Camille Formigé

Fréjus has a long history, going back to Roman times when Julius Caesar established a naval base there.  Such was its importance that the population of the town was greater in the 1st century BC than it is now.  However the original port has long since silted up and the Roman remains have fallen into a fairly poor state of disrepair (and insensitive renovation, more on this later).  Nowadays, I discovered, it’s the lovely medieval centre of Fréjus which is the main drawcard over the classical remnants.

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