Before leaving La Cavalerie, we went for a walk into the village which was founded by the Knights Templar as a staging post to the Mediterranean. The ramparts of the XV century town have been restored, and it really is a pretty place.
Our reason for stopping in La Cavalerie was its proximity to the Millau Viaduct, which has been on our ‘must see’ list since the three week long French Tourist Board advert that is the Tour de France passed through in 2015. Designed by British architect Sir Norman Foster, it’s the world’s highest bridge (343m) and stretches 2,460m over the Tarn Gorge.
Rather than drive over the viaduct, we descended into the gorge. On the way down there was a viewpoint with a magnificent panoramic view over the gorge, and we then drove along the valley floor and stopped under the viaduct for a brew.
Tonight’s stop is a municipal riverside aire in Comps, a small town near Nîmes costing €6 for the night. It’s around 200 km from the Millau Viaduct, so it’s been a long old afternoon in the cab. The road was single lane and cross country, up and down some pretty steep climbs, with no motorways or dual carriageways. The scenery was stunning, just like you see when watching Le Tour on TV, making it an enjoyable drive (not counting the aggressive pre-rush hour driving around the outskirts of Nîmes).
We’ll now be slowly making our way north eastwards towards Switzerland, stopping first to see what’s left of a Roman town.