After a brilliant day exploring the beauty that is Montpellier, we decided to head out of the city to go explore other parts of France’s beautiful Occitanie region.
About an hour from Montpellier is the town of Millau, home to the tallest bridge in the world – amongst many other things of course!
There’s a parking area (with restaurants and a picnic spot) near the bridge so we figured we might as well check out the tallest bridge in the world while we were in the area, before heading off to take in what had got to be one of the most impressive views of not just Millau, but of the surrounding countryside.
Said best view, came in the form of paragliding!
I’d be lying if I said the idea of running off a mountain in a paraglider felt natural (it really doesn’t) but thankfully this time (we’d done it before in Geneva), the wind stepped in and pretty took us up straight away without having to do much running.
And so off we went, swooping and sweeping in over all of the French countryside.
Lloyd had taken off before me so I didn’t even know where he was until I saw his red and yellow paraglider swoosh past mine.
The view is every bit as incredible from up here as you’d imagine. It really sets in perspective where Millau sits in the valley as well as how truly ginormous that bridge really is.
A little while later, we made our way back to our take off spot and upon landing, our adrenaline slowly started giving way to hunger at which point we headed into town for a quick bite to eat, a beer and some caffeine.
As the afternoon progressed, what started off being a very warm yet cloudy say slowly gave way to sunshine and with that, we headed down to the Tarn river so go tubing between the Gorge du Tarn.
Although it doesn’t look like it from our photos, the river area was fairly busy (albeit in pockets) as families and friends from the area came down for a swim, picnic, kayaking and generally to cool off in what had turned into a very hot day!
You can rent these tubes from a company further down the river and they take you along with your tubes in a car to go sailing down the river.
What I didn’t expect however was that we would pretty much be handed our tubes, paddles and life vests and left to get on with it! 😄 I totally assumed someone would go with us to make sure we knew where to go and what to do so for a hot minute there, I kinda panicked but once you get started (and especially when you start to come across all the other people on the banks and going past you in kayaks), I just kicked back and relaxed as we followed the river to a pre-arranged meeting point miles away.
Oh, and by the way, it was also at this point that my theory on who is a better paddler finally got proven.
See, Lloyd and I have done tandem kayaking and canoeing in the past and I have always said I have a better sense of control and also more power when I kayak… 😆
After several incidents of Lloyd just lagging behind or getting beached on his tube (I have no idea why he didn’t even use his paddles to help himself move 😆) he’s finally conceded that I’m better at this than him! 😁
The Gorge du Tarn is an absolutely stunning area by the way and definitely worth popping by when you’re in the area.
Eventually, we arrived at the ‘beach area’ meeting point, thoroughly cooled down and with a new found appreciation for the French countryside!
We headed back into Millau to pick up our car and, after a brief stop to check out the Tour de France action (it would be passing through the city the next day), we headed into town to check into the hotel and check out the Jazz festival going on in Millau.
Dinner was something of an impromptu thing (a quick bite grabbed at a stall in the festival) but mostly because there was dancing in the streets to live music and I wasn’t planning on missing a single moment of this.
Humming led to foot-tapping, which then led ‘seat-dancing’ and before long, my feet decided it was time to do some proper dancing!
After a while in the square here, we headed over to a more chilled part of the festival to check out a performance (by someone whose name escapes me now) but turned out to be quite a brilliant way to finish up the evening…
This has happened so many times when we’ve been (roughly) in this area of France. I know it’s not in the same region but we stumbled on a festival and street party the first time we visited Nimes and the same again when we visited Carcassone.
Impromptu evenings like this are sometimes what makes this one of my favourite areas and indeed, favourite times of the year, to visit France!