Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Gite, Comte, and Gendarme

Here are some of the things we did, saw and enjoyed in the area of and around St. Claude.

Pastoral scenery with lots of cows


Of course we went to the church in St. Claude
You can see it in the background of a couple of the city pictures below.

Pipes and Diamonds.

St. Claude is apparently known for Pipes and Diamonds--they even have a museum.  And just in case you miss the entire sides of a couple of two story buildings painted with a mural advertising the museum you won't miss these:

While putzing around the city on Saturday afternoon we took in the market

and found a carousel!

(which was a big deal, because the kids had BEGGED us to let them ride a carousel in Geneva and we refused)

The place we stayed is called a gite (cottage literally, but this one was more like a converted barn), and accomodated 14 people.  Here are a few photos.

They also had tame deer for feeding--highlight everyday!

And from here we could take a short walk for beautiful views.

A slightly longer hike brought us to this church, where the groom's parents wed.
La Chapelle de St-Romain de Roche

It was a very small and simple chapel from hundreds of years ago (some say as far back as the 8th Century), but in an amazing location on a hill next to a sheer rock face overlooking the quiet village below.

The kids liked exploring here.  This is a small altar located just above the hill where you are eye level with the roof of the church.

A drive into the mountains brought us to this geological formation of folded rock they call Chapeau de Gendarme or the policeman's hat.

And we found a cheese factory, where we were able to buy some of the local cheese, comte.  It taste's like swiss, but without the holes.

We had intended to hike to the area's tallest point, but weather kind of altered our plans.  Instead, we stopped at a couple of lookout points and enjoyed the views.
We certainly enjoyed taking in the sights of France's Jura region.

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