Due to the fact that I can’t get a week off at work during summer (Perks of being the youngest in the office), our family can no longer take long trips during my father’s annual holiday. So lately this results in day trips or weekend getaways close to home. Last week we headed to St. Omer region but this time we went a little bit more south in France to visit the Somme region over the weekend.
On Monday we booked our hotel, and on Friday morning we all hopped in the car and drove south. We visited many places and now I’m once again convinced that one doesn’t always have to go far to see beauty. It also helps that France is just extremely beautiful with so much great architecture and nature.
To make this post a bit more clarifying, I’ll just list up the cities/towns we’ve visited over the weekend with a bit of explanation on the highlights. And of course my favorite pictures I took.
The first stop of our trip was the city of Amiens. This was the biggest city we visited over the weekend so it took up most of our first day. On the website of Euroreizen (Dutch), I found a guide of the region which featured a walking tour of Amiens. That’s what we ended up doing since it brought us to almost everything we wanted to see. I especially loved the Saint-Leu district, which is often called ‘Little Venice’. The beautiful colored houses with the canals are just so lovely. Other highlights are the Cathédral Basilica of Our Lady and the house of Jules Verne.
After the walking tour, we headed to the city park for our picknick. It’s a really beautiful park with many activities available for both kids and adults.
Since we passed through Abbeville on our way to Le Tréport, we just had to stop to see this town as well. In the Tourist Office we got a map with a walking tour of the city which was about four kilometers long. The most important views are the market square, the Saint-Wulfram Church and the Belfry and they’re all pretty close so basically the rest of the walking tour wasn’t very interesting.
First things first; checking in at our hotel for the night. We stayed in the family room of the Golf Hotel (102 Route de Dieppe). For 103 euros we had two connecting rooms, each with a toilet and washbasin and one with a shower. It was basic but I honestly don’t ask for more. We also had breakfast for 8,5 euros of which I expected a bit more. They’ll either have to lower their prices or have to offer a bigger buffet.
We parked our car on the parking lot of the Funiculaire. This little elevator takes you to the lower part of Le Treport for free. You only have a pay 2,5 euros for the parking (Ticket is valid for 24 hours).
Before riding down the Funiculaire it’s definitely worth it to go to the viewpoint. You can see the entire town of Le Treport and also Mers-Les-Bains. Marvellous!
Once down you have a beautiful view on the cliffs from the beach. From there you can walk to the busiest part of the town where all the restaurants and souvenir shops are.
On our second day, we first headed for Dieppe. Dieppe is a coastal community in Haute-Normandy. It has a lovely port and castle from which you have an amazing view on the town. Saturday is also market-day so there were loads of people mingling and shopping. There was just such an amazing atmosphere.
Driving a bit back north, we arrived in Eu. Once again our first stop was the Tourist Office. There we got a map with a short city walk. The highlight of this town is definitely the castle, in which you can find the museum on Louis-Philippe. Eu is also known for it’s forest but we decided to skip that for the time being.
A bit out of the city center, there is also a little chapel, la Chapelle Saint-Laurent. From there you have a stunning view over Eu.
And then we drove to the city we had been looking at the day before from the shore of Le Tréport; Mers-Les-Bains. This city is known for its promenade with many beautiful houses. It’s absolutely stunning. Other than that, there isn’t a lot to see there.
The only reason we stopped in Ault was because we’d been there before when my sister and I were still a lot younger and we have a picture of that place lying around at my grandfather’s apartment at the Belgian coast. We just wanted to see the place again and maybe try to recreate the picture. Sadly we hardly remembered how it looked so it ended up all wrong, but still it was fun to compare the pictures.
And even without the picture, it’s still worth it to do a quick stop in Ault. From the beach you have a stunning view on the cliffs.
We arrived a bit too early at our next stop to make the best out of it. In Le Hourdel you can really experience the flood in this amazing nature reserve. In no time an entire area just floods right before you’re eyes. It’s supposedly very impressive.
But before the flood , you can also spot some seals if you’re lucky. It’s just such an amazing part of nature and while we didn’t see the most intriguing part, I’m still happy we made a stop in this lovely place.
This was the second big town on our journey. Saint-Valéry-Sur-Somme is a lovely medieval town with an amazing port. We parked our car right at the entrance gate and made our way through the streets which are full of beautiful houses surrounded by flowers.
There is also a really lovely promenade along the water that leads to the -rather small- port. From there an old steam train goes to Le Crotoy. We were lucky to just see it leave as we arrived.
Since we still had to drive back home, we didn’t have time left to really visit Le Crotoy. We basically just parked our car, took a quick view at the scenery around us and left again.
I’m glad we still got that because what we saw was quite stunning.
And that was the end of a lovely weekend in the north of France. It may be a lesser known region of France -everyone seems to always head to the south- but it’s also so beautiful with so much culture and great nature.