Travelled: 145 kilometres from Amiens, France to Ypres, Belgium.
Visited: Ypres and the Menin Gate.
Stayed: Ypres, free parking on the canal, no services (2 nights). N50.84703, E2.89348
After our walk through the markets at Amiens we make our way back to the Hymer and continue north. Keeping off the freeway we take the D road leaving the Somme and entering French Flanders. The drive is very French countryside, green fields and very fat cattle, a small village every few miles. Sadly through between every village we pass another war cemetery, on every crossroad signs pointing to others.
We stop at Armentieres for lunch. Another lovely little village, but no mademoiselle I am afraid. Shortly after we cross the frontier into Belgium our 8th country during this years adventures and arrive at Ypres. We visited Ypres and attended a ceremony at the Menin Gate in 2013 with our friends Rod and Julie, so why return. Denice Steep an old friend of Pams’ had seen an earlier post on Facebook of us visiting our Great Uncle’s grave in Ballieu and wrote to us telling the story of her Great Grandmother’s brother, Wellington Cooper who was killed at Passchendaele in 1917. So we said we would be happy to return via Ypres and visit Tyne Cot cemetery and take a photo. Ypres is only 15 minutes from Passchendaele and a lovely place so why not. More about this next blog.
We have the co-ordinates for an un-official aire on the canal and arrive to find another couple of motorhomes parked there, so we will have company. We stayed in a campsite just around the corner during our last visit to Ypres but that was before we discovered wild camping. There are lots of people about coming and going to the sporting fields a little further down the road as we walk up to the Gate. After another long look around the gate we wander down to the tourist information at Cloth Hall. We stop at the little bar near the Gate on our return for a Bocker and a glass of wine, relax and take in the Gate.
Not the best night sleep we’ve have had on our adventures. At four in the morning some young men decided to chat loudly for half on our hour next to the Hymer. Eventually I get up and ask them to move on amazingly they apologised and got in their car and left.
Michael and Pam