Caixon - a delightful village with views of the Pyrenees
Caixon is a delightful village situated in the Hautes-Pyrenees region of south west France. The village is very quiet and comprises just a few dozen houses, many of them featuring attractive coloured stone exteriors. The view to the south of the village is dominated by the spectacular Pyrenees mountains, snow-capped for most of the year. In the immediate vicinity of Caixon there are quiet country lanes, pretty villages and rolling hills and woodlands perfect for a gentle stroll or bike ride.
Less than 5 minutes away by car is the bustling market town of Vic-en-Bigorre. In Vic the full range of amenities can be found:
· Boulangeries and other small stores
· Hardware shops
· Swimming pool
· Post office.
There is also a wonderful Saturday market brimming with fresh produce and almost anything else you can imagine.
Caixon is only 20 kms from Marciac, home of the internationally famous jazz festival and other events throughout the year.
Away from it all but easy to get anywhere
The nearest big city is Toulouse which is about an hour and three quarters away by car. From Toulouse (Blagnac) airport there are direct flights to London and several other UK cities with BA and low cost airlines such as Easyjet.
The town of Pau is about 45 minutes away from Caixon and has much to attract visitors (chateau, golf, horse racing track, museums) as well as an airport with Ryanair flights to the UK.
Also about 45 mins away is Lourdes, famous mainly for the shrine of St. Bernadette which attracts visitors and pilgrims from all over the world.
Tarbes is the nearest major town at about 20 minutes from Caixon. In Tarbes there are hypermarkets and other large stores, tourist information, SNCF train station, parks and museums. The autoroute A64 passes through Tarbes and on to the Atlantic coast (Biarritz) in around 2 hours. Tarbes/Lourdes airport is about 45 minutes from Caixon and is served by charter flights from the UK during the summer.
To the Northeast of Caixon is the town of Auch, historical capital of the Gascony region. This ancient town is known in particular for its architecture such as the renaissance Cathédrale Sainte-Marie with its magnificent organ, carved stalls and rose stained-glass windows and La Tour d'Armagnac - a 14th century prison.
The region is also known for its food and drink, for example foie gras and Armagnac brandy. However in the (extremely unlikely) event that you tire of the local cuisine, why not try something completely different? The Spanish border can be reached in just an hour and a half. There you will find a totally different culinary and cultural experience.
As sunny as the Riviera (but without the crowds)
This region of France boast more than 2000 hours of sunshine per year, the only other part of France with this much sunshine is the Mediterranean coast and Provence. However, unlike those regions, here you will not find crowds of tourists and inflated prices. The village of Caixon benefits from a valley location: close enough to the Pyrenées for easy access to the mountain activities, but far enough away not to be troubled by localized clouds and rain squalls that can be encountered in the mountains.
More about Gascony
The village of Caixon is situated in the "department" Hautes Pyrenees in the historical region of Gascony.
Gascony was historically inhabited by Basque related people. It is home to the Gascon language. It is also the land of d'Artagnan and the Three Musketeers, of world-wide fame.
Gascony is also famed for its douceur de vivre (sweetness of life): its reputed food (Gascony is home to foie gras and Armagnac brandy), its medieval towns and villages nested amidst green rolling hills, its sunny weather, the beauty of its landscape, with the occasional distant views of the Pyrenees mountain range, all contribute to the popularity of Gascony as a tourist destination.
"Gascony." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. 27 Jan 2006, 15:07 UTC. 4 Feb 2006, 04:55
Tour de France
The Tour de France passes through the region every year in July and the local stages are typically amongst the most spectacular of the entire race boasting climbs such as the fearsome Tourmalet at 2115 m.
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