Anyone I know who likes cycling seems to have heard of the Ile de Ré. There is an obvious reason for that. Many see it as a paradise for cyclists. A relatively flat island coupled with miles of segregated cycle paths. Now the network has got a little longer.
For the past few years they have been wanting to connect the villages of La Flotte and La Noue. Until now the direct way was on a rather bumpy and busy road. The existing cycle route connected the two villages but only if you went the long way round via Sainte Marie de Ré. It always seemed a bit of an effort from our house in St Martin de Ré.
I can’t say the new link is the prettiest one on the island. However, it is a big improvement on the road. La Noue is always worth a visit. There are some very pretty old houses plus a market on the Place des Tilleuls.
As I write this, our agency will only let you book for the rest of 2016 online. However, if you call them, you can reserve the house for 2017. More details here.
It was a beautiful sunny day on the Ile de Ré for the the first big holiday weekend of bargain hunting at the island’s various brocantes. Even before nine in the morning buyers and sellers were busy just down the road from our house in St Martin de Ré . My eyes were drawn to a bit of Josephine Baker hair care.
If Bakerfix wasn’t quite what you were after you’d still find it hard to go home empty handed. There were so many stalls full of history.
We couldn’t stay too long though as the annual Ascension Day brocante in St Martin de Ré had been joined this year by a rival Broc in Rivedoux Plage.
This was a much smaller affair but you could at least look out to sea while browsing. That’s the bridge connecting the Ile de Ré to the mainland at La Rochelle inside the fish.
Two brocantes in one day, not bad but there was more to come. Three in fact in the next two days. First up La Noue.
In Sainte Marie-La Noue the brocante stretched along one of the main roads of the village. While at the other end of the island another road was blocked off for the broc in St Clément.
That chicken wasn’t going cheap but the next day in Ars there were plenty of bargains. Someone was clearly thinking summer…
Five brocantes in three days and there are plenty more to come. The island tourist offices have all the details. Our favourite is probably in the next village to us, La Flotte. The next one there is on June 12th.