Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Cathedral Saint-Etienne Toulouse, Paris - 27th December 2005

Some post Christmas walkaround.

The Cathedral Saint-EtienneThe cathedral has a somewhat disconcerting effect by virtue of its having been built over five centuries (XIIth to XVIth), during which ideas about architecture changed considerably. In addition, it houses a number of interesting features, such as its stained glass, paintings, the large rose window and its 17 chapels.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Banyuls - 25th December 2005

Banyuls (pronounced as it is spelled to us english speaking folks, one of those rare cases) is a fishing village and famous seaside holiday town about 15 minutes drive from Port Vendre.

It was early in the morning and the sun was out. People were having breakfast outside and it was a great time for photography.

They have very colourful tradisional fishing boats.

And the water is so amazingly clear....if only it wasn't freezing

Contemplation....no, I don't think he was pissing into the sea


Notre Dame des Anges, Collioure - 24th December 2005

Notre Dame des Anges, Collioure

The extraordinary building of Notre Dame des Anges, whose foundations were built in the sea, is an amazing example of historical patchwork. The belfry was built during the Middle Age and was used as a warning tower for the harbor of Collioure. It was not until 1684 that today’s nave was added, after Vauban gave the order to break down the old church of Sainte Marie in the historical heart of town in 1672. A new church was built in a Mediterranean Gothic style, although it appears to be very austere from outside, the unusual interior is extremely rich architecturally. The wooden altarpiece of the high altar was carved and covered with gold leaf by Catalan artist Joseph Sunyer. In 1818 the belfry was given its characteristic dome and thus received its final appearance.

Since the church has a no camera policy, I decided to respect that and not take any photos in there. But it was splendid.

Monday, February 13, 2006

COLLIOURE, France - 24th December 2005

This is another nice seaside town. Famous for being the place for the artsy folks (like Matisse, Derain, Picasso, Dali, Juan Gris, Hanicotte and Foujita). It is just a 10 minutes drive from Port-Vendres.

The picture is of Notre des Anges Church. It's literally beside the sea. More pictures later...hold on.



Sunday, February 12, 2006

Port-Vendres, France 24th - 26th December 2005

Port-Vendres (pronounced as por-von) is a small coastal town facing the Mediterranean.

Below are the screenshots taken from Google Earth.

The journey from Toulouse took around 3-4 hours using mostly highways. As we were heading towards the Mediterranean, we had to pass by a few popular summer holiday towns like Argelès. However since it was winter, we didn't encounter any traffic jams.

The day started out cold but with the sun out later, more photo opportunity!

Driving thru Argelès-sur-Mer, the holiday town. There were lots of holiday bangalows, hotels, inns, camping parks and caravan parks.

Finally arrived at Port-Vendres.


Walk around Toulouse - 22nd December 2005

The mornings are cold at just below the freezing point. But just enough to create frosts and not snow.

This is a nice scene where there were a lot of trees with lots of frosts.

Once in Toulouse town itself, the sun was out and things don't look so gloomy anymore.

The curbside parking skills of Penangites would be severely challenged here!! You have to do it while side parking ;)

After some shopping or picking up some ordered stuffs from around Toulouse, we headed back home. The cold weather meant that you don't feel very tired after all the walking but it is also very conducive for afternoon naps :)

Next the trip to Port Vendre.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

The Saint-Sernin Basilica - 21st December 2005

It was a chilly afternoon by the time we reached the Basilica. I started taking photos from the outside and the back of the basilica. The entrance wasn't too exciting that was why I didn't bother to get a well framed shot. I didn't read up much about the place, so I was quite surprised that the place was actually built in 1080...

Taking a photo of the Fresco was rather difficult because normal visitors aren't allowed into that area so I had to zoom in from a distance.

A few informative links:

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Touch Down in Toulouse, 20th December 2005

The Pyrenees mountain range can be seen in the background and this shot was taken with maximum zoom.

The city of Toulouse itself from the air.

There are lots of farms on the outskirts of the city as can be seen from the plane.

Most of the Airbus planes are assembled in Toulouse, and some of the parts are brought in by the Beluga, an enlarged cargo plane that you can often see flying in the skies around Toulouse.

Finally arrived in Toulouse Blagnac airport.