Saintes-Maries de la Mer

While long weekending in the Camargue, I was given the name of an excellent restaurant by the owner of the B&B where I was staying, who knew the owners and the quality of their local fare. And so it was that I ate at Le Fleur de Sel, not one but two evenings!

A gastronomic delight with excellent, friendly service:  Chef Alexandra spontaneously created a two-course vegan dish for my friend, while I enjoyed the menu fixe – un regal!

Fleur de Sel restaurant

Fleur de Sel restaurant

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Veggie entree

Entree/Appetizer Legumes Craquants

Veggie plate

Veggie plate/Main course

Fish dish

Fish dish/Queues de lotte roties

Dessert trilogie

Dessert trilogie

 

 

 

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En Camargue

280px-Vue_aériene_des_Saintes_Maries_de_la_Merflamingohorses

Sainte Maries de la Mer, capital of the Camargue: an island known for its natural sandy marshes: home to flamingos, bulls, an white horses (ridden by “gardiens” in provencale colored shirts), pilgrimages, and flamenco music and dancing.

camargue_mer_3

A good friend and I recently spent a girls’ weekend getaway there, enjoying nature walks and the town, as well as surviving one very windy day where the fine, silky sand blew sideways in the air, as we attempted a bike ride – it was so windy that we had to walk the bikes a few times, impossible to pedal against the wind!

 

The weekend provided tranquility: yoga on the beach, nature walks, walking on the beach, quiet reflection, as well as good food and browsing in the town shops.  Live “Gypsy Kings” type music was being performed in many restaurants, along with public flamenco performances.Flamenco dancer 2

We stayed at a B&B not far from the town center, the only downside being that wifi service was available only at an exterior picnic table, which we jokingly referred to as the Internet Cafe (not very convenient on rainy and windy days!)

B&B
Bedroom corner

Bedroom
ExteriorBathroom

The town’s “raison d’etre” is le taureau, with reminders everywhere – there was even a demonstation in the street of les gardiens rounding up some bulls into a caravan at the end of the street – historically, the Camargue is whole lotta bull!

Poster

traffic circle island

traffic circle island

Statue

taureau, taureau, &more amp; taureau...

taureau, taureau, &more amp; taureau…

 

Restaurant recommendation post to follow – stay tuned!

Tourism Office website (in English) HERE