23rd July 2013
I really hadn’t thought much past Paris and the WW! battlefields so when I left Arras I thought I might head to the coast then up to Belgium and the Netherlands. I still wasn’t feeling very well after my few bouts of sickness in Paris and a few nights in a seaside town sounded good – Boulonge-sur-Mer ended up being my next stop. I sort of found that by trying to be reasonably close to the train station you sometimes don’t end up being in the best part of town. Not that it was terrible but I didn’t even end up seeing the beach/ocean at all, oh well, another lesson learnt!!
I walked and walked in this town, mainly because there really wasn’t much near where I stayed. The old part of town was lovely and even the main shopping/eating part was very different for me, more typically urban I think rather than touristy.
The old town has fortified walls with towers and gates spread along its length, you can walk along the top and get wonderful views across the lower newer parts of town. The path is so very pretty with lovely shady trees on either side in parts and wonderful old buildings all round.Again I was blown away by how old it all was, the ramparts and St Nicholas’ church were both built in the 1200’s, just amazing.
The Town Hall in the centre of the old town is a really pretty building and in front are structured gardens worth a quick look. I had a yummy lunch at a little cafe across from here and watched the people at the next table being served and eat the most interesting mussel dish I’ve seen. I didn’t take them up on their offer to share but they were absolutely ecstatic over them.
I actually spent a bit of time in the Notre Dame Basillica drawing; I even had a couple of little French children trying to talk to me and admiring my poor attempt at portraying the altar, they were very cute.
The streets in the old town were lovely too and lined with all sorts of wonderful facades, old windows and ornate signs.