As I was returning from a family reunion in Orleans last week, I decided to exit the highway and go to an area of France famous for its dormant volcanos. I had seen the volcanos in the distance several times when driving on the autoroute and had always wondered what it was like. The region is called Auvergne and it is located about lower mid center of France and is also known as a high altitude area called the Massif Central.
(Please click the images for larger views!)
While this region is known for the volcanos, it is also well known for their beautiful cows who give the milk for great Cantal cheese. Here is a shot of a friendly fellow.
I spent the night in Le Mont-Dore which is a spa town surrounded by the mountains. In the morning, I decided to do a hike to see the Grand Waterfall. While it was beautiful, I preferred the smaller falls that were just below the big falls. Here is an idyllic little area with multiple falls.
While driving further south, I got a little rain which quickly cleared and provided this gorgeous rainbow.
The last stop on this mini-trip was to the Millau Viaduct. I had driven over this beautiful bridge many times but often wondered what it was like to be seen from underneath, especially since it has the designation as the tallest bridge in the world. I drove quickly so that I could catch the last rays of sundown and then decided to wait until the bridge lights came on .
That was the end of the trip with me finally getting home at 1:00 in the morning. A nice diversion from the high speed autoroutes!