A few weeks ago, we had the opportunity to travel with a group of bloggers to Narbonne, a marvellous city in the south of France.
“Tu blog de Viajes” is an association of several bloggers that write about trips. The members of this association have their own blogs but also write together in a joint blog since they met in Fitur in 2015. Once per year they do a trip together in order to strengthen their bonds and discover new places.
The group of bloggers
This year, Narbonne has been the destination and we joined them in this unique trip with our high-speed trains.
We started the trip on Friday in Madrid, together with some members of “Tu blog de Viajes”, and we took the AVE with the destination to Marseille. The remaining members of the group joined in Barcelona, from where we continued our travel to the Canal de la Robine, a well-known city for its Roman heritage and its famous cuisine.
Only two hours after our departure from Barcelona, we reached our destination. Being a region where important wines are produced, we stayed in Domaine de la Ramade, a very beautiful rural hotel only a few kilometres from Narbonne. The owner, Julie Fontanet, treated us incredibly well.
We enjoyed the dinner at the hotel, where we discovered some of the most typical products of the region. Afterwards, we relaxed and recharged our batteries, and prepared our visit to Narbonne and to one of its most important gastronomic places: Les Grands Buffets.
Some photos of our visit of Narbonne
Being a relatively small city (it has a bit more than 50,000 inhabitants) there are many places that can be visited in Narbonne. With its historical past (it was the first Roman colony in the Gaul), the city is brimming with tourist attractions. For example, the Via Domitia, one of the ancient Roman remains. It was the old road that linked Rome with Hispania and where the old Narbo Martius joined the Via Aquitania (the road that went to the Atlantic passing through cities such as Toulouse or Bordeaux).
The Roman Horreum was built at the same time. These underground galleries were built in the 1st century and belonged to an old market or a warehouse. It was the first place we visited on Saturday and during this morning we also discovered other amazing places of Narbonne, for example the Cathédrale Saint-Just-et-Saint-Pasteur, which impressed us even unfinished by its beauty and size, or the Palais des archevêques. From its tower you can enjoy the wonderful views of the city and its surroundings.
Les Halles de Narbonne
Taking a pleasant walk from the Town Hall Square and crossing the Canal de la Robine, we stopped at Les Halles de Narbonne, the municipal market where the inhabitants of Narbonne make their purchases and eat at the food stands. These markets are very common in France and they offer an amazing experience for the palate and the eyes.
After visiting more than 70 stands of Les Halles, the next stop was at the culinary temple par excellence: Les Grands Buffets. Here you can enjoy meat, fish, seafood, 5 varieties of foie gras and up to 45 cheeses, which transforms this place – according to many people- into the best buffet worldwide.
Les Grands Buffets
As if tasting these delicacies was not enough, our bloggers also met Louis Privat, the owner of Les Grands Buffets, a very nice person with excellent Spanish skills. He explained us some facts and anecdotes of the restaurant, which was inaugurated in 1989.
He also showed us the kitchen, were we had a wonderful workshop of macarons -one of the French sweets par excellence- organized by the pastry chef Sébastien Laurenceau and his team. After this, it was time to sit down at the table and try some of the specialties of the region but also several international dishes, all of them accompanied by regional wines.
The Abbey of Fontfroide
In the late afternoon, we went to one of the most magical places in the area: The Abbey of Fontfroide, which was founded in the eleventh century. It is a very impressive place that acquires a special beauty when the sun falls. An immense tranquillity can be experienced when its beautiful lights surround it. This stay was full of unforgettable moments and was the perfect opportunity to discover the place in a very special way. We highly recommend visiting it if you have the possiblity.
The Private Bowling Club
After a long day, there was nothing better than to enjoy a relaxing afternoon and night. We learnt how to make cocktails and we enjoyed the atmosphere of the Private Bowling Pub, that is located right next to Les Grands Buffets.
They also offered us a selection of sausages and typical products of the area. A fantastic day that the team of “Tu Blog de Viajes” will not forget!
The vineyards and the journey in our train
The next day, we had to pick up our suitcases and say goodbye to this welcoming city. In the morning, we enjoyed our last hours at the Domain de la Ramade where we said goodbye to Julia and her kind team. We also had time to take some photos of the vineyards in the sunny morning.
One of the advantages of traveling by train is to enjoy the fantastic views when the train is leaving Narbonne. To see the twilight while the train crosses the Narbonnaise en Méditerranée Natural Park which full of ponds and water areas is just a pleasure. In fact, there are some places where the train is surrounded by water. It is without any doubt a spectacle that you should not miss and that you will have to capture in photographs.
Don’t miss the posts that will be published on “Tu Blog de viajes” and use the hashtag #TBVNarbona to see more images that we have published. We had a great time and we are sure you will also enjoy it!