Visit date: September 11, 2017, overnight
2017 was a year I’ll never forget. I decided to change my job after this blog, and I traveled to Switzerland and France for about 3 weeks to use up my paid vacation time until I changed jobs at that time. It was also on this trip that I did the « Tour of the Most Beautiful Villages in Switzerland » that I have previously mentioned.
From now on, I will write about my visit to other than the most beautiful villages in Switzerland, which I also visited during this job change moratorium trip.
First of all, I would like to introduce a city called « L’Engle ». This is a regional city in the Champagne region of France. Champagne is located in the eastern part of France, between Paris and Alsace-Lorraine further east. It’s famous for Champagne, but I wonder how many of you know the detailed location?
L’Engle is in Champagne, but it is actually in the most south-eastern part of Champagne. I will show you a map.
As you can see on the map, this city is located in the middle of the straight line between Paris and Switzerland, or more like Switzerland. I rented a car at Charles de Gaulle airport and searched for a good city to stay as close to Switzerland as possible, and I found this city. Actually, we considered taking a train to Basel or Bern in Switzerland and renting a car there, but we couldn’t find a good train, so we decided to take a car.
This is the car that I took care of this time. It is not a problem in driving itself, but the performance was not good to be honest.
I arrived in France by airplane around 13:00 on September 11, and although I was already used to renting a car here, I had to go through a lot of procedures, so it was around 15:00 when I left. From the airport to the city of Langur, the distance to Langur is 297km, and it takes about 3 hours. We arrived at the hotel in Langur just around 18:30 in the evening. I had arranged this hotel before departure from Japan. It is located in the center of the city, but the price is reasonable because it is a provincial city, and it has a parking lot on the site, which was a perfect condition.
After getting our bags ready, we still had a little time before dinner, so we took a walk around town. Just after the rain, it was dusk when we could catch a glimpse of sunshine. It was very beautiful to see the old town illuminated by the setting sun reflecting on the cobblestone road surface where the rain had not yet dried.
The next morning after breakfast again, we took a walk around the city before we left.
It is also called « Le Carcassonne du Nord » (The Carcassonne of the North) because the town is located within the city walls. Indeed, just before arriving at this town, I could see the town standing on a small hill surrounded by a magnificent wall from a distance.
This wall was designed by the famous Vauban and was strengthened in the 19th century when the Citadel was expanded, so that the city could escape from the Prussian army during the Franco-Prussian War. If you look around the city from this wall, you can understand the feeling of a fortified city.
The city cathedral was also magnificent.
This cathedral is called the Cathedral of Saint-Mammes. The facade was built in 1768 and designed by a Parisian architect, Claude Louis d’Avilliers. There is a description in English below, but it gives only a third of the information of the French one. The French version has more detailed information about the sponsors and the facade (the type of pillars, the central part, the pillars on both sides of the central part, the fact that the coat of arms of the Royal French Army was once there but was removed during the French Revolution, etc.).
On the outside, the cloister of the church was bare.
Dinner was at a restaurant in the hotel. Because the price is cheap, the grade is also ordinary, it was not a big thing, but I enjoyed the meal in the local after a long time.
The wine was cheap and delicious. In these ceramic pitchers. It’s very local and very nice.
By the way, the city of « L’Engle » is also famous for its fromage. The famous AOC cheese « L’Engle » is a specialty of this city. It’s a washed type cheese and very popular, so you can buy it even in Japan, although it’s limited to high class supermarkets and department stores. Since we were there, we ordered fromage after dinner. The bottom of the plate (front side) is Rangle. It was delicious.
I was so tired on the first day that I took a shower after dinner and slept well. Next day morning, after breakfast, we went for a walk around the city. Then we got in the car and headed for Switzerland.