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Notes from the Languedoc

By Rupert Wright

Thursday 18 December 2003, by Rupert

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Notes from the Languedoc

Nobody should come to France without reading this book. For the Languedoc is a land of castles and heretics, vineyards and scented hillsides, boar hunts and bullfights, sandy beaches and flamingos. But how do you get to it?

Rupert Wright, a journalist for nearly 20 years, who writes for the Sunday Times and Financial Times, spent the last three years exploring this great region. This is his account of his travels. Here you will meet the people that are shaping its future, including Georges Freche, dynamic mayor of Montpellier; Jean-Claude Mas, an energetic winemaker based near Pézenas; and Juan Bautista, whose idea of fun is to wave red capes at angry bulls in the Béziers bull ring. You will learn some of the history of the place, including the crusade in the 13th century against the Cathars, the building of the Canal du Midi, and how La Grande Motte turned from being a farm into one of France’s busiest and brazen beach resorts.
This book is available, among other places, at Librairie Domens in Pézenas, in Montpellier at As You Like It bookshop, and in Foyle’s at Charing Cross Road in London.
If you would like a copy, please click on Notes From the Languedoc

Forum posts

  • I was amazed to see the auther’s comments on Cap d’Agde quioted in the Sunday Times and it is hard to believe that he lives only 20 minutes drive away and yet can be so ignorant or wilfully misleading about one of the finest resorts in France..Cap d’Agde is NOT primarily a naturist resort..less than 5% of the total area and holiday population are within the entirely segregated naturist ’village’ even has it’s own separate marina !

    I agree that the architecture would not win any awards but it is at least unobtrusive and not positively unpleasant (as the weird geometrical shapes stuck on the front of the Grande Motte apartment blocks undoubtedly are), and there is no high rise.

    The overall layout of Cap d’Agde is superb allowing the majority of holiday residents to reach their nearest beach on foot without even crossing a road...a far cry from having a busy, noisy and dangerous dual carriageway running beside the beach so common in older resorts too numerous to mention.

    I suggest that the Mr. Wright should spend a little time in ’Le Cap’
    to soak up the delightful atmosphere created by so many french families enjoying their summer holidays in safe and happy surroundings.

    Yours, still shocked by the author’s ignorance or prejudice against seaside holidays par excellence, and truly
    Nigel Paige
    PS. I love Pezenas as well !

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