Still in the Camargue. I could easily stay another few weeks here. I feel like I’m getting more sensitized to the local flora and fauna. With every hike, I’m spotting more little plants and critters. Today, Ute, Jim, and I went to the protected area ‘Les Sentier des Rainettes’.
I now have a new favorite plant, called “Saladelles” – Sea Lavender.
Apparently, as the grass dries out during summer, sea lavender takes over and begins to bloom everywhere. We saw whole fields of it at the nature park, buzzing with dragonflies. Beeeaaauuutiful!!!
Hiking through the Camargue today was just wonderful. I don’t even know where to start… let’s see…
Flamingos! Flamingos! Flamingos! So many and so close. And… they are hilarious. They mooonwalk through the mud like Michael Jackson to stir up critters and gobble them up. They stick their entire head in the mud, coming up cackling and squabbling with the other flamingos around them. The noises they make sound a lot like a mixture between a fart and a burp… I just couldn’t stop laughing while at the same time observing these beautiful (elegant and gangly) creatures with awe.
There were so many dragonflies as well. I got quite ambitious photographing them. You tell me… what do you think of my favorite dragonfly shot of the day?
Then, I saw a couple birds of prey, black storks, lots of herons, several beavers, and lots of white horses.
The Camargue landscape is a thing of beauty in and of itself. Rarely have I seen such warm and intricate compositions of sunshine and foliage. I am utterly in love all over again (I was here twice before) and will surely be back again in the future!
Tomorrow will be one more day of hiking through the Camargue together with my friends Ute and Jim. Then onwards and westwards, towards Montpellier…
Yesterday, I explored Arles a bit. It was great to visit the Arenes d’Arles, a two-tiered Roman Amphitheatre. I was happy to see all the scaffolding and seating, which gave the strong impression that there is just a little pause… until concerts and plays will be back…
Overall, the town had abundant charm. Lots of little corners that made the photographer in me go wild. Some places just looked so inviting, I was tempted to settle in and never leave.
Other than this, tomorrow I’ll move on towards the Camargue where I’ll stay for 3 days to explore all over the place without my heavy backpack. A couple friends and I will go hunt birds (with a camera). I’m looking forward to seeing flamingos again, and many other beautiful bird species. And, of course, I’ll finally reach the ocean! Ahhh, beautiful deep blue sea. I can’t wait!!!