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Friday, 15 July 2016

MoHo Trip No. 2 La Turballe, Part 2

Day 3

Our third day dawned cloudy and grey and was to remain so all day, unfortunately. We had planned to visit the medieval fortified town of Guérande so off we set. We were lucky to find some MoHo parking nearby - this is the downfall of having a motorhome - it's less the length than the height which is a problem as so many car parks have height barriers, particularly by the coast. Not something we'd ever really noticed in a car before!

A map of the walled section of town taken from Wikipedia - wish I'd looked at this before we visited! It's so easy to walk around in circles in these places and you wonder if you missed anything! I think that we saw most of it though.

When we were there the market was just finishing and packing up - but not before I spotted these eggs for sale which interested me! How much?!! I need to open a market stall...... :-)

Loved the suit of armour and cute half timbered houses are to die for.

We decided to lunch out and it was moules frites for K. I stupidly ordered a galette, and it was every bit as boring and tasteless as every other galette I've ever eaten. Why do I do this?!!

K outside the medieval city walls.

That afternoon we did more stooging around and came across some lagoons with interesting bird life, luckily in a place where we were able to park nearby. I forget where this was exactly. The Grey Plover below was a lifer bird and I've only seen Dunlin once before in northern Spain - well any waders get me excited, except for Avocets and Black Winged Stilts as I've seen so many, especially here and the gulf of Morbihan. Doesn't that sound awful, but you do get really blasé about them!!

However, I've never seen an Avocet doing a mating dance before. I should have videod it as it was very funny, and photos just don't show it like it was.

A lifer Grey Plover top and bottom left, with Dunlins galore on the right.

An Avocet again top left, bottom right is a Ringed Plover and top right and bottom left are Black-tailed Godwits in colourful breeding plumage.

My OH's photo of the Black-tailed Godwit.

Day 4

The sun returned on our last day, and not only that - it turned surprisingly warm! We returned slowly up the coast in the direction of home. We didn't visit the town of La Turballe but decided to stop at Piriac sur Mer a bit further up the coast. What a surprise - I had been expecting a typical touristy seaside town but in fact the town had the label "Petite Cité de Caractère", and character it had a-plenty. 

The port

The sea front overlooking the port area.

Up the many back streets with many beautiful granite houses. It is a very pretty place to stroll around, not big but well worth a visit if in the area. Plenty of restaurants and some tourist shops, but not enough to spoil the character of the little town.

There are sandy beaches here too but it was low tide so all the people who go out with their buckets and spades were out. But not like the bucket and spade brigade in England (kids and sandcastles!) - when you see people out and about like this they are collecting shellfish. If they are doing so in sand and mud I think it's cockles they are collecting, but thanks to my camera zoom I was able to conclude that here it is rock oysters that are being harvested off the rocks.

A bit further up the coast at the Pointe de Merquel near Mesquer, we had a delightful stroll beside the sea and next to a field which apparently had a particular type of orchid in it (purple something? and which I forgot to take a photo of). That's because we were too busy watching the Linnets flitting about and seeing what other birds we could spot. 

On the sea side we spotted this Wheatear.

And in the field I managed to capture this male Linnet in full breeding plumage. There were other males around which were not nearly as colourful as this one. I don't know why some were so much redder than others?

My final photos for the day were these Turnstones sitting on the rocks beside the Pointe - it was fun watching them as the waves were washing over the rocks at times and the birds would be floating around before the wave went out and they could resume their places on the rocks.

So that ends our four day trip to this part of the world. We had a thoroughly enjoyable visit and on top of that, were beginning to get to grips with this motorhome camping lark. :-)


  1. Another lovely place, you got to see the same birds as I did on our trip to Northumberland, not many birds as it's wrong time of year, March is better..
    Guérande looks a interesting place and could spend hours here discovering things. I had the same thing I wish I had read up on more about the places we visited as they were things we missed...Oh well I will just have to go back !
    So glad you are enjoying your self's and getting about...
    Amanda xx

    1. Thanks very much Amanda. Earlier is better for birds but then the weather sucks, haha! Each place we've visited I've been picking up tons of tourist leaflets about places to visit and things to do.... Not stuff you necessarily know about beforehand unless you spend hours on the net researching, and if you have very limited time there's no chance to see the places of interest. But hoping there will be plenty of next times now we have the MoHo! xx

  2. Gosh what a wonderful walled city - know the feeling about reading up on places before visiting!!!

    Great selection of waders and especially love the photos of the Avocets. Your photos really do make me want to visit this part of France - so much of interest to see and do.

    So pleased you are having so much fun with your purchase :)

    1. Thanks very much Caroline! There just aren't enough hours in the day to read tons about places to visit beforehand, and as I said to Amanda above, I have collected tons of brochures and maps to help with the 'next times'! I also think that learning everything about a particular place beforehand spoils the visit a little, (depending what you are visiting) as I like to learn during the visit, so long as the info is given, of course!

      There are tons of interesting places to see within about 2-3 hours from home. You should certainly give some thought to crossing the channel. With your love of history you'd love it here, and there are churches galore. :-)

  3. This does look like a lovely place to wander around with so much character. I find walled towns fascinating; the walls give such an ancient feel to a place. I love all the birds too especially the avocet and the beautiful linnet.

  4. Thanks so much Wendy. It's been really wonderful being able to get away and see new places after being stuck at home last year and most of the year before! :-)

  5. Just catching up again, looks like a lovely few days away for you both.
    Some beautiful beaches in that area by the look of your pictures.

    Philippa xx

    1. Thanks Philippa - it was lovely and would be great if you wanted a beach type of holiday too. Hope all is well with you and family. xx

  6. Hi Mandy, had to look up galette, sounds thoroughly unpleasant.
    Thanks for the info on the butterfly, I really should try harder.{:))

    1. A buckwheat pancake! The national dish for Brittany is 'saucisse galette' which is a sausage wrapped in a galette. It's about all you can get to eat at public events i.e. fetes, agricultural shows etc. Is it no wonder that I go crazy for the food when I'm in England? :-) And you are welcome re the butterfly. :-)