Keith van Sickle

Guide to gluten free France

Written by on September 2, 2019 in Gastronomy
Guide to gluten free France

France might have the best bread in the world – baguettes, croissants, brioches, and much more. And don’t forget the pastries! Is there anything better than a rich French éclair? But what if you can’t eat any of it? An estimated 7% of the population has a gluten intolerance of one sort or another. Can […]

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What to see and do in Beaujolais Burgundy

Written by on August 1, 2019 in Burgundy
What to see and do in Beaujolais Burgundy

France is full of gorgeous wine regions. From Alsace and its fairy tale villages to Cassis and its vineyards that nearly touch the Mediterranean Sea. And then there’s Beaujolais. Its vine-covered hillsides are as pretty as any in France. You’ll find it in the south of Burgundy, a region that’s world famous for its wines. […]

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What did the Pont d’Avignon originally look like?

Written by on June 16, 2019 in Guest Blogs
What did the Pont d’Avignon originally look like?

Sur le Pont d’Avignon L’on y danse, l’on y danse Sur le Pont d’Avignon L’on y danse tous en rond Many of us learned that song as kids, about the famous Pont d’Avignon in Provence (real name: Pont Saint-Bénézet). For those of us lucky enough to visit Avignon and see the bridge in all its […]

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What do see and do in Fontaine-de-Vaucluse in Provence

Written by on April 15, 2019 in Provence-Alpes
What do see and do in Fontaine-de-Vaucluse in Provence

One of the charms of L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue is the river that runs around and through it. This river, the Sorgue, is a favorite of tourists and fishermen alike, with its crystal-clear waters sparkling in the sun. The source of the river lies just five miles east of L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue in one of the most beautiful spots in […]

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Carrieres de Lumieres, sound and light shows Paris and Provence

Written by on March 18, 2019 in Art and Artists
Carrieres de Lumieres, sound and light shows Paris and Provence

 What do an abandoned quarry and an old iron foundry have in common? They both house magical sound-and-light shows that must be seen to be believed. The Carrières de Lumières (“Quarries of Light”) has been operating for decades near the mountaintop fortress of Les Baux-de-Provence, and is one of the most popular tourist sites in […]

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How the French do politics

Written by on March 9, 2019 in Guest Blogs
How the French do politics

I live part of the year in Provence and one day I was reading Le Monde and a headline about a “sexy politician” caught my eye. “Well, those are two words you don’t see together very often,” I thought. So I read the article and found out that there had been a poll asking French […]

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The Transhumance of Provence

Written by on February 15, 2019 in Guest Blogs
The Transhumance of Provence

The people of Provence have been raising sheep for centuries. You see flocks of them all over the countryside, grazing under the watchful eye of shepherds. But Provencal summers are scorching hot and sheep have heavy wool coats so they’re moved to cooler pastures. The transhumance in Provence The answer  to dealing with the heat, […]

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The Four Queens of Provence

Written by on January 14, 2019 in Guest Blogs
The Four Queens of Provence

There have been many famous families in history. Take the Curies, for example: Marie Curie won two Nobel Prizes and her husband, daughter and grandson each won one. Quite the talented family! And then there are the Wright brothers and the Brontë sisters. And let’s not forget those comic masters, the Marx brothers. But imagine […]

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How the Hunchback of Notre Dame got the name Quasimodo

Written by on December 13, 2018 in Guest Blogs
How the Hunchback of Notre Dame got the name Quasimodo

The Hunchback of Notre Dame is one of the most famous characters in French literature. But how did he get the unusual name of Quasimodo? For centuries, French law strictly limited the names that families could give their babies. They had to come from an approved list made up mostly of Catholic saints. The laws […]

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French Buyback Lease Car Hire Programme

Written by on October 6, 2018 in Holiday Travel
French Buyback Lease Car Hire Programme

Have you ever seen mysterious red license plates on a French car and wondered what they mean? Was the driver a diplomat? A military officer? A French James Bond saving the world from an evil genius? No, the car was from the French Buyback Lease program. If you need to rent a car in Europe […]

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