Thursday, 20 September 2007

Les Gorges du Tarn

Some of these pictures are scans of postcards, others taken at different times and with different cameras.


The river Tarn, in the south-west of France, has gouged a deep chasm through the limestone resulting in some spectacular scenery which no photography can represent properly. It's an area where we often break our journey on our way south to visit our sons - it takes our breath away every time.

A rather narrow road runs alongside the course of the river most of the way, so I can't imagine how it must be during the height of summer. Off season though, it can be very quiet and many places are shut. Once upon a time there must have been a much larger population because there are small villages and extensive terracing everywhere.


The buildings here and there are being restored.



The rock formations are amazing too.

We stay normally at the Chateau de la Caze.


I walked along the river and took another shot which shows I think just how high the sides of the river valley are. The chateau is not a small building.


You can just see the chateau behind the trees. The other building is the annexe for extra bedrooms. All the rooms are lovely and all have superb views but the ones in the chateau are extra romantic!


As I was at that spot on the river, I noticed the river suddenly swirling and bubbling. I kept not-quite-seeing what was happening out of the corner of my eye. I took several shots trying to catch the currents, but it wasn't until I got home and looked at the photos that I saw this:

Do you see what I mean? It's a face and the currents of water were coming from its mouth - was it trying to talk to me? SPOOKY!

I tried to take a shot of the stones on the bank to show the black slate-like stones which seem to be used as roofing material. Then I noticed the long stone of the right just under the black one had the imprint of a shell - a fossil! I was delighted.


I think to appreciate the area fully, you have to leave your car and go around by canoe, bicycle or on foot, otherwise you miss so much.

This post is part of Lifecruiser’s Cyber Cruise. You’ll find everything about it on .

Other posts in the series I have found interesting:
Drottningholm Palace Church from Captin Lifecruiser
Mountain Life – The Spirit of the Norwegian Soul from RennyBA's Terella, a wonderful blog all about Norway
Skara Brae from CaledoniaHiking away from maremagnum


  1. Wowiiieeee! I wanna go there! I love that castle and the surroundings!

    How wonderful, it's like a forgotten place. And that gorgeous gorges. And the road there, it looks like the horrifying roads at Crete in Greece - when I arrived all sweaty everytime we went somewhere, but it was breathtaking scenery!

    What an experience it must be to be there. and as you say, to walk around or canoe'ing must be the best way to see it all!

    So picturesque - and spooky peaceful :-)

  2. Lovely scenery! and even a chateau!
    Next trip to France will be to go skiing so I will only be taking "white" pictures!

  3. What a lovely post and how well documented with this beautiful pictures. I just love the scenery, the architecture and the rural atmosphere - just like going way back in time.
    Thanks for taking me with and it really makes me want to visit one day!

  4. A beautiful photo tour in the gorges. Amazing how water can change nature and carve such tremendous and spetacular scenerys. And the stoneface over the road (one of the first pictures) is fantastic.
    I'm also happy to see so many of the old charming houses are restored and at least used as summerhouses.

    I agree, this gorges (and others like f.i. Ardeche and Verdon) is best seen from canoe or cayack. Walking at the bottom during summer can be extreme (Hot-hot and steep)

    Thanks for sharing

  5. A great post beautifully put together and so evocative. Congrats.

  6. Oops! I'm a wee bit late but I loved all those postcards, especially the gorges! Amazing stuff!

  7. Sorry I'm so late! That is spooky about the face by the river; I can see it in the picture. The river is so beautiful! And to see the chateaus is so nice! And the face in the rock! Very cool post!

  8. Captain, yes the castle is beautiful, we love it. The roads do take some getting used to! It's fine going slowly but then you come across a local who knows the roads and doesn't do slowly!

    Mar, white pictures sound lovely!

    Rennyba, you're very kind, thanks.

    Tor, it is good to see the restoration going on, though sometimes I feel they do stick out like a sore thumb. I dare say they will weather in time (just like me!)

    LR, many thanks!

    Caledonia and Sword Girl, no time limit! I'm happy for you to visit any time:) And thank you both.


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