Around the Pyrenees

Visual diary: Travelling from Barcelona to Toulouse to Lourdes (back to Toulouse, then Bordeaux) to Bilbao.  By any means necessary!  Beautiful nature scenes, old architecture and crafty small city markets are just a few things to look forward to around the Pyrenees.

Basilique Saint-Sernin de ToulouseIMG_8109

Exploring the narrow streets of Toulouse by foot.IMG_8114

On the bridge by the Garonne river.  I absolutely love how an afternoon picnic is a tradition.  All you need is bread, cheese and wine, right?  Luckily, the French have much more than that.IMG_8123

We joined in and found a spot on the grass for a picnic =)  we had fruit and juice.IMG_8132

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Saturday morning market!  We were told this is a good place to get fresh produce.  But you can also enjoy a whiff of the fresh bread, try new cheese and olives and walk around the arts stalls.IMG_2647

Discovered Jardin Japonais and had to do the cheese and wine thing… The nice thing in France: any bottle of wine around 3 Euros from a famous region is good.  Or maybe we were just lucky.  This bottle was from Bordeaux. IMG_2648

Now in Lourdes, exploring this very small space.  It’s a little over commercialized but if you know the story you’ll understand why this is a place of importance in the Catholic world. IMG_8151

So take a turn into a small street away from the main.IMG_8152

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The view, smell of plants and soil, and fresh air must mean a day out hiking!  Many downhill bike riders here, keep your eyes and ears open. IMG_8237

Saw this peculiar looking winged friend up there.  I was so fascinated, I actually looked it up, it’s called a Hummingbird Hawkmoth.IMG_8236

Finally made it to Bilbao…  Department of Health building, amazing architecture!IMG_8306

At the Guggenheim museum.  A must visit, no questions asked.  The story behind this design is worth it by itself.  But this huge building exhibits art as well, booklets and audio guides are available in all major languages.IMG_8340 IMG_2662

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Photos aren’t allowed except in designated areas but I had to sneak a snap of this, in case anyone out there wants to take part.IMG_2679

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Zubuzuri, bridge designed by the famous Santiago Calatrava.IMG_8373

View from underneath while we were canoeing the Nervión that runs through Bilbao.  A lot of fun, no rapids though =)IMG_2700

 

You can read the whole story, in detail, here!

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