The Sense of This Journey
The story of this trip begins 70 years ago. Denver is the second-oldest sister city in the United States in its relationship with Brest, France, started in 1948. In 1947, Amanda Knecht, a teacher at East High School, visited WWII-ravaged Brest. When she returned, she shared her experiences in the city with her students, and her class raised $32,000 to help rebuild the children’s wing of Brest’s hospital. The gift led to the development of the sister city program with Brest.
French people are grateful to Americans who fought along side and continue to be strong allies. We arrive as delegates representing freedom for years to come! I am excited and honored to bring a delegation from Denver to this beautiful Region, rich in tradition, agriculture and seafood fresh from the Coast. This year, we will explore the gastronomy, the tradition, and the history of each region we’ll visit: l’Ile de France, Normandy, and Bretagne. Looking forward to an exciting trip!
Meet Laurette Heppell
The time is all yours to explore this wonderful cultural hub of Europe. We will be staying in the Marais neighborhood which rose to fame and fortune during the seventeenth century with Aristocracy and Intellect. It is also the oldest neighborhood of Paris with prestigious hotels, museums and quaint shops. This fashionable neighborhood is situated in the center of Paris. During your three days in Paris, you will have a chance to explore anyplace that your heart desires – material for direction will be provided. We will meet in the evening for an orientation and welcome dinner.
Visit Montmartre Hill and the Sacred Heart Basilica over Paris rooftop. Then behind the Basilica, stroll around the Place du Tertre, home to many famous artists during the bohemian years. Walk to Rue Norvins to the Moulin de la Galette, a cute bistro and a location used for the Amelie movie. Then explore the Montmartre district, the hub for Parisians, an area for a more authentic experience.
Today will begin with a delicious Parisian breakfast at “Miss Manon”, exquisite croissants. We will then move to the heart of “Le Marais” for a guided tour around the lovely historical neighborhood. The rest of today will be your choice. Feel free to explore museums with your Paris Passes, or enjoy a boat ride on the Seine River, step in and out at any destination you wish to visit. You can also take the bus throughout the city.
GIVERNY | BEAUMONT-EN-AUGE
We are leaving Paris. We are on the road to Giverny. We will discover the magnificient gardens of Claude Monnet, where most of his inspired impressionism paintings were born. After taking in all of the lovely flowers and natural surroundings at Monnet’s gardens, we are off to Rue Tatin! We will spend the evening with chef and food journalist Susan Herrmann for a delightful cooking class demonstrating a local specialty.
On the road to the lush and green pasture of Normandy countryside. We will visit a cheese farm and learn how famous French cheeses are made such as Camembert and Livarot. Enjoy the surroundings of the farm with the cows and traditional building. Then, we will be driving to the Normandy Beaches where history took a turn in Europe forever.
Following the Normandy beaches, Caen Memorial is a must see to understand what really happened in this part of the country during the two world wars. The second part of the day, we will be going to the majestic Abbaye of Mont-Saint-Michel on an Island with a breathtaking view of the bay at sundown.
This morning we will wake-up in a hotel over looking the ocean, in the historic walled city of Saint-Malo, known as the corsair city. After a walk through the cobbled street of the old town, we will travel to Saint-Brieuc to delight fresh produces and local specialties in the best outdoor market of Bretagne. The day will end along the Granit Rose coastal beaches.
Kerlouan | Tregastel
In the heart of the Granit Rose Coast is the charming city of Tregastel, an enchanting site. Relax or take walks along the coast to your heart desire. Then we will move to this ancient fisherman village of Ménéhan. It is situated in front of a large sandy beach pointed by huge stone boulders. In the evening we will arrive to our Denver Sister City, the city of Brest and be welcomed by our friends.
Here in Brest, you will not be a stranger. Hervé will take you to an historical walk through the old town. Learn what started the alliance of Denver/Brest sister city. Visit the Brest Port of Commerce where fishing boats bring their finding. Choices to visit the Naval Museum or the Oceanapolis.
Locronan | Quimper
Quimper, the authentic traditional Briton city. Best known for its hand-painted faience (pottery) and famous crepes. The charming Odet canal runs through the center of town. Close to Quimper is the most beautiful village of France, Locronan, a medieval place where many movies have been made.
A culinary experience with expert cook from Brest. Visit La Presqu’ile du Crozon, a natural park where the ocean is always turquoise-blue. You will visit the Abbaye of Daoulas, an ancient monastery with an amazing calvary. The abbaye is situated in the country of Plougastel, known for its delicious strawberry because of the micro-climate of this region.
Spend free time in the City of Brest, meet with the locals, visit shops, restaurants and pubs. If there is anything you wish to see or do, this is your day to do it before you go to your next destination. You can fly back to USA or extend your stay in France, we can support you in planning your next trip. BON VOYAGE!
Don't prepare for your trip!
Of course we are kidding, but really don't worry too much about being prepared. We want you to come as you are and without feeling like you know everything that is going to happen. It adds to the spontaneity and magic of your experience. You can turn off your technology, you will not need your GPS. To find yourself you need to get lost and just follow the signs.
• 12 nights in 3-4 star charming accommodations.
• 12 breakfasts & 11 lunches.
• Transportation in a comfy charter van.
• All activities and admission to sites.