Monday 14th July, Bastille Day.

ImageA very pleasant stay in La Bourboule which, in the morning without the rain, is a very pleasant town. We had a good wander through it then off together to Mont Dore and the Puy de Sancy anove the town.

The cable car take you up a good part of the way then a vigourous walk to 1900 metres to follow. Fantastic weather and fantastic views although the wind was very, very cold. I borrowed Charlotte's hoodie as I was well under catered for.

Returning some while (and a good lunch) later I took the southern scenic circuit of Puy de Sancy suggested by Michelin before heading for our pre booked accommodation at Clermont Ferrand. Doreen once again took me directly there by a quite inexplicable route but directly there. I suppose it's not her fault that it a pedestrian only street.

The Hotel du Lyon is unprepossessing having a rough pub below. The rooms are tired and our bed was a sort of hammock, the type where you roll together in the night. Not too flash. There's no parking either. It's very in keeping with Clermont Ferrand itself. Down at heal.

Mary directed me the parking building she'd found and as I drove in and immediately having collected the ticket the barrier dropped down and ImageI collected it too, mostly with my nose. Part surprise, part bloody nose and mostly my pride was injured.  Good job I had my helmet on, pity the visor was up. Treatment with ice was very effective

The security man came and explained that moto's are not allowed as the sensors don't detect them. I'd noticed. In my opinion public floggings would be too good for the designers and owners. Perhaps a prominent sign might be an idea? I left the bike in the square outside the hotel, somewhat reassured by Ride magazines assertion that nobody wants to steal F650's

Most of the restaurants were closed but we found a German style one next to the cathedral. The food was ok and the service patch. Price expensive.

Finally to cap it all, Clermont Ferrand do have Bastille Day celebrations. The bad news it that they are several kilometres away and start at 11pm. We were able to see them between some of the buildings. By this time everything had closed and even a coffee was not to be had!

ImageRecommendation? Avoid Clermont Ferrand and the Hotel du Lyon. You could probably have guessed this.