Today we needed to get serious about going east. Our plan for the past few days has been to head to Provence, but we never quite got ourselves going that way. So today we abandoned our backcountry roads and jumped on the motorway for almost 200km’s to get to Pont du Gard.
This site is one of the most famous Roman sites in France, and features on a lot of travel sites advertising France. We decided that this would be a good place to begin our visit of Provence and southeast France.
We arrived in the early afternoon and it was unseasonably warm with temperatures in the high 70’s low 80’s. After a nice lunch Ton declared it was siesta time and Pont du Gard could wait.
Around 4 pm we wandered down to see the site. Pont du Gard is a three tier aqueduct that was built around 19BC. It stands over 160ft high above the river Gardon and was used to supply the city of Nimes. The aqueduct that the Pont du Gard supported was over 30 miles long.
It is quite an impressive structure and very beautiful. The French are certainly much more laid back about managing historical things like this, and the atmosphere was more relaxed and informal than we are used to. People were swimming under the bridge picnicking on the grounds around it, there was not a policeman or ranger in site to keep order.