Hanging Out at Pont du Gard & the Best 4€ Gas Station Wine Ever

Arles Market Day
You can spend your time on a European trip visiting museums, restaurants or wineries, but if you miss a market day experience, you’re missing out on a glimpse into local life.  Wednesday is market day in Arles, so we decided a picnic would be in order. (click on any photo to start a slide show)

Historic Arles
Many Provençal cities and towns have a history that dates back to Roman times, a timescale we Americans have difficulty understanding. 2000 years?  We consider 100 year old items antiques.  The Roman Theatre and the Amphitheatre are well worth a visit.  They’re so large and they are just the remains of the structures that existed back in Roman times.


Gas Station Wine
Sorry, no photos!  We didn’t find any wine at the Market in Arles and we didn’t want to spend a bunch of time trying to find a wine shop.  On the way out of town, we stopped for gas.  I noticed a small display of wine near the front of the station (where I might normally expect to see candy bars).  For 4 € , why not?  Then the station attendant pointed to the wines, said “Bon!” and indicated the vineyard and winery were just 2km down the road.  Sure enough, we drove right by it on our way to Pont du Gard. Verdict? Gamay grape, 12.5% alcohol and 100% gulpable.  Perfect picnic wine.

Pont Du Gard Picnic
The Pont du Gard is a Unesco world heritage site.  Built 2000 years ago by the Romans, the aqueduct provided water to the city of Nimes (which was much bigger then than it is today). It’s also the tallest aqueduct built by the Romans at 50 meters tall.  It’s also a great spot for a picnic and a swim!

Dinner in Avignon – Fou de Fafa
We had heard about Fou de Fafa from friends, and subsequently found out it is the place to go in Avignon. Entree, Plat & Dessert for 30€ in a lovely setting with a very nice, reasonably priced winelist.  Wonderful!  If you decide to go, make sure you get a reservation, they fill every night.

Oh, and if you’re curious about the name, here’s the explanation.

So, if you need a vacation from your vacation, give some thought to a Market Day picnic!



15 Responses to “Hanging Out at Pont du Gard & the Best 4€ Gas Station Wine Ever”
  1. Beautiful photos, Jeff. Now I’m hungry…..!

  2. Amazing pictures as ever mate, hope you had a wonderful time!

  3. What a wonderful experience. We love the markets and not paying much for wine doesn’t mean it’s not good. Thank you for sharing

  4. Fred Petters says:

    Good stuff Jeff. Thanks for sharing with us.

  5. Spectacular photos, Jeff!! What a gorgeous setting . . . looks like you’re having a SUPER trip!! Salud!

    • Thanks, we had a great time! I can’t keep up with blogging while on vacation, so these posts are after the fact. The vacation is (sadly) over, but I’m enjoying sharing some of our finds.

  6. The Pont du Gard is amazing, touristy (but as I say, there is a reason for that), but I go every time I am down there. Did you dance on the Pont d’Avignon?

    • Thanks, Jeff. We were fortunate to be there in late May, so the summer rush hadn’t quite started. Also, we basically just hung out by the bridge and the river, so we didn’t need to deal with too many crowds.
      No dancing on the Pont d’Avignon. Even if we were aware that we should, it had closed for the day by the time we arrived. Next trip!

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