(please refrain from using my pictures without my permission)
even before living in France, i have always wanted to visit Rocamadour. i have first read about it in a book called, Sixty Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong. and the way the author described how wonderful a place it is made me put it in my list of must-visits.
when i was still studying french, there was a tour then available to students, conducted by Alliance Francaise de Toulouse over the weekend, going to Rocamadour by bus. i couldn’t go because i was four months pregnant at the time, and i knew it will be tough for me to climb and walk around the area.
and so, i did not miss this other opportunity that presented itself just recently. i went with a few friends over the weekend, driving all the way from Toulouse. it was quite a short drive from here. you just have to marvel at this ancient architecture. everything was so beautiful. every corner, every turn is a marvel.
we were praying that it wouldn’t rain. fortunately, there was only a bit of drizzle that lasted for a few short minutes. and then it was alternately sunny and cloudy all throughout the day.
Rocamadour is a lot, lot better than what pictures show you. and it has a lot of history to tell. no wonder, it is a UNESCO-inscribed World Heritage Site.
the place is a little bit touristic, making the souvenir shop and restaurant prices a bit higher than their worth. i wanted to buy this tender nougat at some candy shop that specializes in it, but it was too pricey for me for just a small bar of nougat. it was heaven, though, when you feel it melting in your mouth. sorry, forgot to take a picture.
but if you have this view to offer, the extra bit price is worth it. for lunch, we headed off to a charming little restaurant that offers a nice terasse with the view of the greens.
after lunch, we headed to the opposite part of the village, towards the Hospitalet and the Grotto.
upon arrival at the Grotto, we found out that there is a schedule for entry and that the visit is guided, and lasts for 45 minutes. and it was strictly prohibited to take pictures and touch anything inside. unfortunately, the guide does not speak English. we were given handouts in English, though. and during moments when she was not speaking at the rate of 186,000 words per second, i was able to understand and get the gist of what she is saying. although, i felt that we should have paid less because of the language issue.
visiting this grotto made me think how lame it looked compared to Sagada in the Philippines, even though i have never been there. it made me wish Sagada was as well-protected and appreciated as this grotto.
we ended the tour at this corner where you have the best view of the village:
i had a wonderful time in a wonderful place with wonderful people. 🙂