Friday, 6 February 2015
Monday, 21 April 2014
Dunkirk near Calais lies just 10 km from the Belgian border. It is famous for its unfortunate position as the landing post for the British Expeditionary Force that became encircled by the Germans during the Second World War, a situation that led to the famous evacuation of Dunkirk.
The beaches at Dunkirk are remembered for all the wrong reasons but this town still has a working harbour and an interesting museum.Dunkirk today is a small and rather sleepy French Town with some good shopping facilities, restaurants and cafes.
For photos of Dunkirk click here
Gravelines near Dunkirk is a small town with a main square and a couple of shops and some cafes. It used to be an important port in the 12th century
The Arsenal just off the main square is a museum of Art with modern statues in the grounds. This old castle with its impressive high walls was used as a base for the military during both World Wars. It was restored and refurbished in 1982.
For photos of Gravelines click here
Calais is a major ferry port in the North of France. It is the nearest port to its English equivalent in Dover just 21 miles across the English Channel. On a clear day the White Cliffs of Dover can be seen in the distance.
Fortified in the Second World War and heavily damaged by the Germans it is today a service town visited by over 10 million visitors a year. Although essentially a modern town it does feature some outstanding architecture. The Hotel de Ville ( now the Town Hall ) and the Tour du Guet ( Watch Tower ) dominate a shopping square and car park.
Famous for its lace making the town has its own sandy beach which is often missed by tourists passing through in transit. The Calais Theatre is an outstanding building with beautifully ornate stonework and styling.
For photos of Calais click here
Paris, the capital of France is a remarkable city and one of the largest population centres in Europe. Visiting Paris is always a pleasure. With its magnificent monuments and historical legacies the buildings are nothing short of astounding. Paris did not suffer the damage of other European cities due to the French surrender in World War II so it retains its authenticity and splendor in a way other cities such as Berlin struggle to achieve.
Paris is a world city destination and a hub of cultural excellence. A business city with one of the largest GDP's in the world it is a city that lives up to its expectations.
There is absolutely no way you could justify visiting Paris for just a day but you can get round it and see its main architectural structures by taking one of the open top tour buses. You can get on and off these at any stop and they are by far the best way to get around Paris and see the sights.
Paris is renowned for its fine food and shopping. The capital of style it is packed with so many things to see and do and there is something here for all tastes. Paris is one of those cities that you just have to visit even if its because you want to be able to say you have seen the Eiffel Tower. However, it is more than that. It is the sort of city that you could visit again and again and still not become tired of it.
Many English people still think that there is some animosity towards the English and that French people who can speak and understand English will only speak French in Paris. This is an old fashioned view and Parisians are proud, hospitable and friendly. Judge it for yourself.
For more photos of Paris click here