missus and myself started out on a 2 month trip across france a few weeks back. the first part of the trip was touristy, second part we'll be living in one spot in the country (yay long service leave). just sharing some happy snaps from the various places. c&c welcome. finally some sunny (but still cold) weather gave a chance for some brighter photos. Chinon and Forteresse Royale de Chinon 1. another fascinating fortress that was also used as a royal quarters. hardly anything remains today compared to the complex at its peak. lots of big names to throw around here, including joan of arc, richard the lionheart, and more. 2. looking back towards the clock tower with a view over the medieval town below, beside the river 3. looking towards the royal quarters and the last slither of the town below 4. looking from the royal quarters towards the big archery shooty-shooty tower 5. 6. fractal tree 7. looking back on the royal apartments 8. streets of chinon below the fortress 9. 10. Abbaye Royale de Fontevraud big-ass abbey (biggest in europe by complex size/land area) with a history of a thousand years. a very interesting past including when it was converted to a prison in mid 19th century, earning a reputation of france's hardest prison (their version of fremantle prison), which didnt get shut down until the 60s. 11. the abbey itself 12. inside the abbey with trippy lighting 13. no nuns on the run to be found 14. looking up at the main abbey spire from the internal courtard 15. ass-end of the abbey 16. 17. silent discos were first invented here 18. roman kitchens, which were unfortunately closed for rennos (another risk you take travelling during off season - many things closed for repairs etc), but an interesting looking building 19. ok, so more art installations. this time there was a maze of underground passages (probably for wine storage, those monks sure liked to get on the sauce). this all about owls, and the artist had put together a whole lot of scenes about owls. they're all made from white string and light with blacklight, so they were very trippy. this was the only one that had a rail with a flat wooden top, so i was able to do a long exposure A(no tripods allowed in most places these days). i did well to attend this because i have a mild fear of owls lol..... this one part was in a side passge about 6 metres deep and 1.5m tall, maybe 2m wide.