The Good Life France Magazine

The Good Life France Magazine brings you the best of France - inspirational and exclusive features, fabulous photos, mouth-watering recipes, tips, guides, ideas and much more...

Published by the award winning team at The Good Life France

1 year ago

Issue No. 25

In this issue, visit France from home - Gascony, and Provence, fabulous day trips from Paris, captivating Toulouse and charming Northern France. Recipes, guides and a whole heap more to entertain and inspire...

The Gers The Gers, or

The Gers The Gers, or Gascony some call it, is one of the most rural regions in all of France. You’ll find it in southwest France, just west of Toulouse but a world apart from the buzzing, colourful metropolis. A 25 minute drive from Toulouse airport will bring you to L’Isle Jordain, a great little town on the edge of a region that on a map looks decidedly green. There are no big cities here. No high speed rail services either, though you can take the train from Toulouse to Auch, the capital of Gers. There are no motorways in Gers. Not one. And there’s no mass tourism. The Gers is the real France you thought didn’t exist anymore. Bucolic, beautiful and bubbling with bonhomie.

Road trip Gers In the Gers, it’s easy to feel like you’ve stepped back in time to a gentler place. You won’t come across coach loads of tourists and you won’t find traffic jams. What you will find are roads which take you through sweeping panoramas, undulating fields of sunflowers, corn and rapeseed. Vineyards lazing under the sun alongside lush grazing pastures dotted with wildflowers. Hedgerows of hawthorne, broom and honeysuckle hug fields and forests. Pretty villages are seemingly on every corner, and bars are full of friendly folk, happy to share their little corner of paradise. Though the Gers is not France’s most sparsely populated district (Lozère if you want to know), it is the most agricultural, with more of its land under cultivation than that of any other French district. Humans in the Gers are hugely outnumbered by livestock, especially ducks, apparently 28:1. Ask any local will tell you that what’s important to people in the Gers is family, friendship and good food. And they really mean it. It’s a brilliant place for a road trip whether you’re driving or cycling around the Gers. And you’ll need your own wheels, because there’s not a lot of public transport. L’Isle Jordain - bells, books and a bubbly market town I started my Gascon jaunt in L’Isle Jordain, journeying by train via Paris to Toulouse (4 hours) where I met my friend Lucy who’d just flown in from the UK (2 hours). It was Friday night and, as we booked into the charming L’Echappée Belle Hotel, the concierge warned us to move our car to the free car park on the corner rather than leave it in front of the hotel. Next day was market day and there would be a stall selling vegetables where we had parked.

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