No pain, no gain – that’s what they say. I felt the pain on Friday of 5 hours on a ferry crossing that should take 3.5, so I was overdue something good. Now I’m in Saumur – that fits the bill nicely.
The ferry from Newhaven to Dieppe struggles to survive, and it’s not hard to see why. Bafflingly, DFDS have made the journey artificially long. Five hours feels like eternity on such a grotty boat.
We took the overnight ferry, leaving Newhaven at 11.00 on Friday and arriving in Dieppe at 5.00 on Saturday morning, local time. From there, we took our usual route to Rouen, to the Place Saint-Marc. After a short doze, we wandered around the market, buying fresh food for the day.
What’s different about this holiday is that we aren’t heading down to the south west of France. Instead, we will be spending the next 5 days in Saumur.
Our trips away to Berlin, Croatia and Lake Garda – plus two long weekends in Paris – earlier this year have left Damon a bit short on holiday allowance. So our break is just for 10 days, rather than our usual 16 or 17. Getting to and from Bergerac by car would use up 4 of those 10, leaving us little time to enjoy our stay there.
So, instead, we’re holidaying in the Loire. We found a stylish apartment in Saumur through Owners Direct. It has a lovely terrace (pictured) where we ate last night and enjoyed a glass each of local wine. OK, two glasses.
Hey, I’m allowed – I found out this week that I passed my Wine and Spirit Education Trust Level 3 exam with merit.
While we’re here we’ll visit some châteaux and, of course, some vineyards.
“It has a lovely terrace where we enjoyed a glass of local wine. OK, two glasses. Hey, I’m allowed – I found out this week that I passed my Wine and Spirit Education Trust exam with merit.
Then we’re off to up to stay with our friends Colin and Michael in Pas-de-Calais. After we leave them, we’ll head back down to Dieppe to take the ferry home.
From theirs, it would have been easier to get home via the Eurotunnel, but tickets were £480 for a round trip. The ferry cost us about a third of that.
Perhaps there’s a reason why the ferry between Newhaven and Dieppe continues to operate after all…