Since I was a little girl, I have loved France. I loved the food and the culture, the literature and the language. I studied the language all the way through high school and college, before making the choice to study French at University. It was then that I lost the enthusiasm and the love that I had for the language. It wasn’t until I’d graduated and the opportunity to speak and read French on a daily basis WASN’T there any more, that I really started to love it again.
Since graduating, I’ve managed to visit some beautiful French cities. Last month, I was able to visit yet another French town, one that has been on my bucket list for a very long time: Lourdes. We’ve all heard the tales about Bernadette and the Virgin Mary
In typical Hollie fashion, I made my trip to Lourdes a quick and tourist attraction filled one. Armed with my travelling companion Laura, we caught a train from Bordeaux to Lourdes and were able to bask in the sunshine of the Pyrenees (which was all well and good, until we arrived at the hotel, took time to freshen up and change to head out for dinner and walked outside to torrential downpour.)
Getting up bright and early to explore was the key. We wandered down to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes, following the ridiculous crowds of pilgrims heading down for early morning mass. I don’t consider myself overly religious, but the entire experience was very calming and tranquil, and sitting quietly with my own thoughts whilst observing mass was something that I am very glad to have done. The town is absolutely beautiful and exploring it was a really memorable experience for me.
We took the time to light a candle and give a little donation to the Sanctuary, and stopped by the gift shop to take a few souvenirs back for family members. All in all, a good day was had and made for a relaxing start to a very long and hectic train ride to Barcelona, which was our next stop. You can read my post all about this trip here.