2011-07-01 (Day 309) The Gorge du Verdon

An early rise this morning as we drove inland to the Gorge du Verdon, where we were to spend the bulk of our holiday.

As we drove, we were listening to an audioboook of "Pure Dead Magic" by Debbi Gliori. Now, I don’t think that kids will ever enjoy three hours in a car in searing heat, but our experience is that audiobooks are a fantastic way of making such a journey tolerable.

Anyway, the Gorge du Verdon is nicknamed "Europe’s Grand Canyon". I’ve never been to the real Grand Canyon, but I can say that the scenery in this part of the world was simply spectacular. The Gorge is formed by the River Verdon (so named for its green colour), which flows through limestone hills. The gorge is up to 700m deep, and there are a few man-made lakes in its length that are used for hydro electric power generation. More of that later.

Anyway, we drove from Esterel to Castellane, with me stopping the car every so often to say "ooh", "wow", or something equally profound, and take a photo or two. The scenery was simply amazing. Throughout this holiday I failed to take photographs that could communicate the scale of the gorge… but the postcards being sold in the shops also failed.

This is an area I would recommend anybody to visit… so long as they are confident drivers…!

(Side note: this was taken with the Canon 350D and Sigma 18-200mm OS. I know that people love to decry such lenses, but it managed to do a pretty fine job most of the time!)

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