Back to Montpellier for a couple of more days! Since L and C had to work, P and I explored nearby towns on our own with day trips to Avignon and Aigues-Mortes.
If I had a good “not impressed” face, Avignon would be the place for it, starting with the parking garage. This garage must have been made for golf carts. Good luck if you had anything bigger than a compact… It took P and I 15 minutes to drive up the garage to the 5th floor and about 25 minutes to drive down it, having to back up the car each time we attempted to enter a new floor. It took another 5 minutes trying to squeeze into the very tight parking spot. At first, we thought the French must be really skilled drivers being able to maneuver their way through this garage and were a tad embarrassed. After we saw other drivers having similar problems and noticed gigantic markings along the garage walls from unfortunate drivers/cars, we were relieved that it wasn’t just us!
Garage aside, it seemed like the whole town was fed up with all the tourists and decided to embrace a grouchy and brusque nature. Lunch was uneventful, site seeing was significantly overpriced, and the people we came across generally seemed unhappy. Needless to say, our experience in Avignon was not fantastic, but perhaps we were just unlucky… Avignon is certainly a beautiful town full of history and lovely architecture, but not sure if we’ll be coming back anytime soon…
C and L highly recommended Aigues-Mortes, only a 30 minute drive from Montpellier, as a nice place for our next day trip. P and I had never heard of this little village, but was surprised at how many people were visiting when we arrived. After walking around the surrounding quiet streets, we settled in a nice cafe off the main plaza and enjoyed a delicious lunch while an old French man played the Spanish guitar across the street. It was so relaxing and exactly what we needed. After exploring Aigues-Mortes, P and I decided to head to the beach to take advantage of the hot weather. Just 15 minutes outside of the village was a strip of beaches. P and I drove along the coast and stopped at the first beach that we saw at la Grande- Motte. We waded into the ocean, delved into our beach reads, and enjoyed the glorious sun.