jeudi, août 27, 2015

The monday at Valloire

At Valloire, like most ski villages, during summer, there are many outdoor activities. Some of these activities are paying. There is often an offer to buy a pass to access all the activities at an attractive price. For the apartment we booked, we were each able to benefit the Activities Pass for 1€ a day. This pass includes access to the cable car, the swimming pool and the skating ring. 

On Monday, we headed up the mountain by the cable car. We were able to see cows grazing below us. They had big bells and we could hear them even when the weather was foggy. 

After the cable car ride, we went even higher on the chairlift. The only times I took the chairlift was when I was skiing many years ago. This time, I was with A1 while Seb took the earlier one with A2. The chairlift did not look solid and I was pretty nervous on it. 

At the top was the lake, Lac de la vielle and we had a pinic lunch with a view. 

After a good lunch of local ham and cheese, we hiked down towards the cable car station. That took us an good hour of walk before taking the cable car back to the village.
At the village square, there were free activities for kids like giant chess and checkers. There were also badminton rackets, juggling materials etc.... The boys pedaled on karts and had much fun.

At 4pm, we headed to the bowling alley for a game. It was the children's first time. When it was their turn, the bumpers would rose up automatically preventing the balls going into the gutter. They actually scored better than me. A2 was asking to go bowling every day after. At 7.50€ per game per person, the bill added up fast. That was the only time we were there.
That was how we spent our fruitful day. During the stay, the boys had fun at the playground, multi-games court and bouncy castles in Valloire. They also loved the slide at the swimming pool. More posts coming....

lundi, août 24, 2015

A week in Valloire

Tim and Carmen came visiting us on 8 August for 11 days. The next day, all of us went to Valloire for a week's vacation. As with most holiday homes in France, towels and bedsheets are not provided. They can be rented but usually at an exorbitant price. Unlike hotels, the owners of these holiday homes do not want the hassle of having to do laundry. And most holiday homes are by a weekly basis starting on Saturday. I was glad to find an apartment that rents from sunday to sunday.
We were six and our VW Touran came in handy. However, there was hardly any trunk space left after installing the kids' car seats at the back row. I borrowed a roof trunk from a neighbour and we managed to squeezed in our baggage in it. It was not easy as bedsheets and towels for a family of six took up a lot of space.
We were taking a toilet/coffee break at a gas station along the highway. This was how our vacation car looked like.  Did you notice that behind our car, there was another Touran with a roof trunk too? That is how the french go on holidays in summer.
As the cat hotel that we usually put Bao Bei at was full, we found one mid way to Valloire nearby Clermont-Ferrand. This cat pension was new and each cat had a big space with big cat tree. After dropping Bao Bei, we continued our route to Valloire with Seb driving us up the Alps mountain range.
The car trip took us about 10 hours. Once we settled down in our apartment, Seb brought us around this small mountain village. He had came here to ski a few times as a kid.
The pic below is a hotel with typical architecture of the region.
More apartments on the slope of the mountain with a cable car station that brings people all the up to the top.
The village square with the church at the background.
The day we arrived, it was cloudy and foggy. Carmen mentioned that it looked like a backdrop of a 武侠小说 (Chinese swordmen movie).
I have more photos coming up showing the lovely scenery and activities we did during this one week. Stay tune.