December 21, 2017

Happy Holidays Enjoy the Festive Season from Ginger and Nutmeg

Happy Holidays Merry Christmas  Happy Hanukkah Thank you for following Ginger and Nutmeg all over the map! Click here to check posts by map pin points. We travelled to Australia (Melbourne for foodies, a 3-day visit to Sydney, and give Nutmeg Brisbane any day). Then again Provence is always close to Nutmeg's heart from sunflowers to cherry season recipes (clafoutis). Planning a trip to Provence in 2018? Check-out the G&N Perfectly Provence Touring Tips. And for ...

 
December 11, 2017

Clos de Montmartre a Vineyard in Paris

Nutmeg had read about a small vineyard in Paris, located in the shadows of the Sacré-Coeur spires. The last time either Ginger or Nutmeg had been to Montmartre was in the 1980s. After a crazy taxi ride complete with construction bottlenecks, pre-Christmas traffic, impossibly narrow streets and hills only fit for funiculars they arrived in the middle of a mob scene. A clear Saturday afternoon right before sunset, it was immediately obvious why there had been a 30-year gap since their last visit....

 
November 13, 2017

Easy Visit to Bordeaux and the Famous Vineyards

Some time ago (number of years not to be disclosed here) Nutmeg travelled to San Sebastian, Spain via train. At that point, backpack travel was heavily influenced by “Europe on $20 a Day” and where your Eurail pass would take you. So, she and her travel companion spent a total of two hours in Biarritz and about the same in Bordeaux. A visit to France’s southwest was long overdue. This time G&N are not travelling on Eurail passes or sleeping in hostels. They were booked on a six-day g...

 
October 30, 2017

A Visit to the Tarascon Castle and the Legend of a Monster in Provence

The Heart of Darkness or Niger Focus (later Nerluc) might have been an appropriate name for the hamlet located on the shores of a murky, swampy river. The muddy, opaque waters fueled rumours cultivating the nightmares of residents who asked was the beast: A huge serpent? A dragon? A fierce half-lion? A vicious turtle? (more…)...

 
October 16, 2017

Pablo Picasso at Rest near Aix-en-Provence

Château de Vauvenargues is located in the village by the same name, a few kilometers from Aix-en-Provence. This castle has a lengthy history.  The present structure was built on the site of a former Roman settlement. Over the centuries, Provencal counts and then the Archbishops of Aix occupied the castle. Clearly, it pays to be the doctor of a king; in 1474 Roi René gifted the Château to his physician Pierre Robin d’Angers. (more…)...

 
October 2, 2017

Learn about Casanova and the Jardins d’Albertas of Bouc-Bel-Air in Provence

Whether fiction or not, Nutmeg thinks it is appropriate that Casanova the infamous Venetian writer, gambler and reputed womanizer is weaved into the history of les Jardins d’Albertas. This garden, owned by the Albertas family, is located just a few minutes outside of Aix-en-Provence in the town of Bouc-Bel-Air, where the ancient village was built on a bouc (small hill). The roots of the Albertas family stretch from Alba, Italy to Aix-en-Provence, where their influence on the Provençal c...

 
September 18, 2017

Sunny Sunflowers Why We Love The French Tournesols

Provençal postcards, Pinterest boards and Instagram are filled with photos of sunny sunflowers. Long before the Internet these beautiful flowers inspired Vincent Van Gogh to paint a still life series called Tournesols (Sunflowers). He painted the first of the group in 1887, in Paris, and then later (1888-89) in Arles. (more…)...

 
September 4, 2017

Retail Nightmares Big-Box Shopping in France

Nutmeg is here to tell you that Big-Box shopping is the same nightmare in France, as it is in Palm Springs, Chicago, Airdrie and Scarborough. Big-box retail (think Target and Walmart) has evolved as a cost effective development strategy, under the guise of offering consumer convenience.  Without boring you all with the details, this concept works well for the landlord and tenant as no party is too "invested" in the location.  The big-box retail model has evolved from "destinati...

 
August 7, 2017

5 Reasons You Must Visit Plan a Visit to Australia’s Noosa Headlands

Despite early beginnings (1879) as a protected area, the Noosa Headlands would not exist if real estate developers had been successful in their push for further coastal development. Luckily for visitors and residents today, park advocates won their bid to protect the natural landscape in the 1960s. Read more about the Noosa Parks Association here. So, why should you visit the Noosa Headlands? (more…)...

 
July 24, 2017

Not to be Missed a Brisbane City Break for a Relaxing Stop-Over

"Give me Brisbane Any Day" After driving nearly 3000 km from Sydney to Adelaide, G&N were happy to hand over the rental car keys. Virgin Australia winged them from cool, rainy Adelaide to sunny and slightly humid Brisbane City. Nutmeg was in semi-tropical heaven. “Brissy” invited G&N to explore her neighbourhoods starting with Brisbane’s South Bank. On a sunny Saturday afternoon, this lively venue is where the playground collides with the bar scene. Restaurants compete for c...

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