Our friends Jamie and Jennifer have been visiting us in Nice, and we took a few days to drive west to visit Sète and Collioure. We’ve traveled together to France before, and also to Japan and Turkey. So this is like old times.
I’d heard a lot about Sète on expat blogs and thought it worth a look, for its good weather, affordability and access to a TGV line. Before that, the only time I’d heard of it was in a touching film, “The Secret of the Grain.”
Sète is bustling and vibrant, with lots of people socializing and moving about in the streets (as you do in a city with good weather year-long), a thriving fishing fleet and wholesale fish market on the docks, a vast indoor market and food hall, lots of good restaurants, a long promenade along the Corniche and a picturesque marina on a canal.
However, it is not a city we are considering any longer. We want a bit more sophistication and variety in the amenities where we live.
A very generous Texas native who I met on said expat blog gave us the grand tour, and showed us her sun-filled apartment overlooking the old town and dock, before taking us to the Mont Saint Clair hilltop viewpoint over the city and environs.
It was a beautiful day, and, as we rode through the city with her convertible’s top down, we could understand the appeal of Sète to all the Northerly expats here.
Tomorrow we leave with Jamie and Jennifer to visit Céret and Collioure, near the Spanish border. Maybe we’ll find some paella.