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A Taste of Twin Cities: Tournon-sur-Rhône and Tain-l’Hermitage

Jeff Linamen

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5/25/17- Today we had the opportunity to explore the twin cities of Tournon-sur-Rhône and Tain-l’Hermitage in the heart of the Côtes du Rhône, wine-producing region of southern France. Separated by the Rhone River and connected by the 1847 Marc Sequin Suspension Bridge (original 1824), the two cities are easily accessible to one another via this historic pedestrian bridge.

 

The design of the Marc Sequin Suspension Bridge inspired the design of New York’s Brooklyn Bridge and the construction of many other bridges across Europe.

 

Tournon frames the Marc Sequin Suspension Bridge from the Tain-l’Hermitage side of the Rhone River.

 

We were docked on the Tain-l’Hermitage side of the river and began our visit touring there first. Of the two cities, Tain-l’Hermitage has the more modern, industrial town center. Though it doesn’t feel at all touristy, it has received many visitors including Thomas Jefferson.

 

Fountain in the square, Tain-l’Hermitage, with their famous vineyard hills in the background.

 

Looking up the steep hillside vineyard.

 

The vineyards above Tain-l’Hermitage.

 

With a population of just under 6,000, Tain-l’Hermitage has a relaxed, small town feel that is very welcoming. We enjoyed a wine-tasting at the famous Cave A Vins Fromages. We sampled many different local wines from the region.

I’ll say this: I’m really not a fan of the red wines from southern France. Of course, this should mean nothing to a true wine connoisseur. I know next to nothing about what makes a good wine– only what I like. Of the probably (close to) two dozen red wines I sampled during this trip, I might have liked one or two. On the other hand, I enjoyed nearly all the white wines from the region.

 

Ready for our wine tasting.

 

Across from the shop, we wandered through a rather large open air market before leisurely walking back towards the Rhone river.

 

Crossing the Marc Sequin Bridge to Tournon.

 

Ruins on the hillside in Tournon.

 

The steeple and clock tower of St. Vincent.

 

A view of the city of Tournon on the Rhone River.

We finished our visit across the bridge in the (older) city of Tournon. With a population of about 11,000, it remains a quiet, pleasant little town; not unlike many others found throughout Europe. We enjoyed a relaxing walk through the streets, especially enjoying the sunshine.

Tournon Castle.

 

Facing the river, is a War Memorial created by sculptor Antoine Sartorio on the granite rock below Tournon Castle.

 

The streets of Tournon.

 

We spotted these beautiful dogs outside the entrance of Church Saint-Julien in Tournon.

 

Church Saint-Julien in Tournon, France.

 

Caisse d’Epargne in the town centre of Tournon-sur-Rhône, Ardèche, France.

 

Roof peaks and towers of the Gabriel Faure School, Tournon-sur-Rhône, Ardèche, France.

 

Comprehensive School Gabriel Faure founded in 1536. “Lycée Gabriel Faure”.

 

The Vineyards of Tain-l’Hermitage, against a beautiful blue sky, as we crossed the bridge, returning to our ship.

 

Our floating home on Rhone River, Uniworld’s luxury ship, the S.S. Catherine.

 

James Barbour In Concert.

 

James Barbour.

 

JAMES BARBOUR just finished starring on Broadway for nearly three years as The Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera. He has also starred on Broadway as Sydney Carton in A Tale of Two Cities (Drama Desk, Drama League, Outer Critics Circle awards nominations), Czolgosz in Assassins, The Beast in Beauty & the Beast, Billy Bigelow in Carousel, Officer Lockstock in Urinetown and Edward Rochester in Jane Eyre (Drama League nomination). James also appeared on Broadway in Cyrano, opposite Jeremy Irons in Camelot and in the national tour of The Secret Garden. Other recent credits: Jean Valjean in Les Misérables (LA Ovation Award, Best Actor), Daryl Van Horne in The Witches of Eastwick (U.S. premiere), Daddy Hogan in Anna Nicole (BAM). TV: “The District,” “Just Shoot Me,” “Flashpoint,” “Sex and the City,” “Ed,” “That’s Life,” “Beauty & the Beast in Concert” (CBS), “Great Performances,” “An American Experience,” “A Tale of Two Cities” (PBS). Film: Alchemy, Adam Sandler’s Eight Crazy Nights, Waiting for Lefty, Twinkle Toes with Sally Kirkland. Recordings: Broadway in Concert, The Gift, Dracula, Tears from Heaven, The Count of Monte Cristo, Excalibur, his many cast recordings and two solo CDs, A Gift of Christmas and Bring Me Giants. He hosts TV’s “James Barbour Now” on WITNation.com. His production company, Laughing Dog Media, creates and controls original content for VoiceAmerica.tv’s new Internet TV network. JamesBarbour.com

 

Broadway On the Rhone concert performed by James Barbour.

 

We thoroughly enjoyed James Barbour’s evening of story and song. He has a rich, beautiful voice and masterfully connected his passion to the heart of the audience.

 

Broadway’s current Phantom, James Barbour entertains on Playbill Travel’s Broadway On the Rhone.

 

Travel Date: May 25, 2017, Thursday (Day 13)

Playbill Travel’s “Broadway On the Rhone”


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