Day 9: Family Camping Road Trip in Bergerac to See About a Man with the Long Nose

From D’Artagnan and the Three Musketeers in Condom to Cyrano de Bergerac in France, we begin the second week of our family camping road trip from Spain to Poland this year.  For the most part, coronavirus social distancing guidelines are being followed with the ubiquitous face masks, particularly indoors.

Cyrano de Bergerac, the boys and the old flour market.

We did not even know this particular musketeer until some Poles we met yesterday in Condom mentioned it. 

Since we are not in any particular hurry, why not stop for an overnighter, right?

“Look at that big nose,” my four-year old son said with a grin on his face that looked like he was about to say something that would show my excellently bad fathering ways.

“It looks like an adulto [adult] Pinocchio!”, the older one yells out, laughing out loud at his own observation.

When he was a little boy, is it true that Cyrano de Bergerac was called Pinochio?

There are two statues paying homage to this  libertine Gascon musketeer. 

One made of white stone in the old flour market surrounded by picturesque wood-timbered houses. 

The other made of multi-colored bronze (the one that the boys were pointing at) stands on Plaza Pelissiere at a Santiago de Campostela pilgrimage stop.

Old town houses, Bergerac style.

I tried to convince the boys that Cyrano is a real musketeer with his hat in hand, sword and uniform. 

But they weren’t buying it.  To them, there can only be D’Artagnan and the 3 Musketeers.  No one else.

With mission accomplished we roamed about the old town from the Pont de Bergerac–the bridge over the Dordogne river that cuts through the heart of this grapevine-growing region–to the L’Eglise/Church of Notre-Dame. The latter was closed.

View of the old town of Bergerac from a quiet ans convenient camping municipal.

Certainly, there’s more to do and see in Bergerac than the 2 hours that we had.  We packed too many things to do and broke the sanctity of our “unhurried, happy” family camping road trip theme here.

All’s well when the rivers swell in the end.

For your visit, make it more efficient by stopping by the excellent tourist information service on Quai Salvette (street) and grab a brochure that will give you 2 types of walking recommendations: (1) historical center tour with 1.8 kilometers of walking that should last about 1 hour 45 minutes (more, with kids and frequent stops); (2) 19th century neighborhood tour (1.6 km, about 1 hour). 

Chillout at the quai across from the excellent tourist info service.

Add an hour at least to check out the museum upstairs, in the same building, about wine and vineyards.   I heared there were FREE tastings. What? FREE alcohol… that you son’t spray on your hands?  Maybe.

There are also  boat and vineyards tours of the famous Bergerac wine…. maybe for next time.

Looks like this dude is wearing some serious anti(corona)virus mask.

Unlike the other French municipal camping sites that we have greatly enjoyed so far, the good thing about Camping Municipal La Pelouse is its proximity to the old town, its shadeful trees and quiet, riverside camping across from the town with views of boat rowers in the calm waters of the Dordogne.

With ducks on the walking road to Bergerac, the boys did not want to leave.

Its facilities are otherwise sufficiently basic and it’s a downer that I have to bring my own toilet paper.  Still, it’s lower than average camping during high summer season at 24.90 (including tax) for a family of 4  (2 kids), a car, 3-person tent and electricity.  The grassy pitch is 2 times the size of our car plus tent and then some. 

Next: Cave paintings at Lascaux… maybe, if we can make it there.

Free Electrons Family Camping Road Trip 2020 @ Camping Municipal Bergerac, France.

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