Hello Going Expat People,

Once again we are here talking about travel and experiences. Let me write first a disclaimer to remind you that my travel section is not a section for travel bloggers, but just my way to tell you about an important aspect of my life that is a bit detached from living abroad, but somehow connected.

Before I go deep into my Champagne for a week-end, let me explain:

travel and discover new places is a necessary element in my life. Very important for me is also to have the possibility to try different types of travelling – in couple, with a friend, in group, with organized trips and alone.

I started to travel more already when I was in Milan, but surely the economic condition but also the ease of reaching many places from the Netherlands encouraged my choices.

From Rotterdam to Champagne for a week-end

It simplifies my life saying a weekend in Champagne, meaning the geographical area, because my French is bad and naming places like Épernay, Hautvillers and Remis is complicated for me. But here I’m just writing so I can indulge myself.

These 3 are the 3 towns we visited. The first destination and area of stay was Épernay, the capital of Champagne with an Avenue du Champagne that makes you feel poor at every step. Joking aside, this small and charming town offers the opportunity to do thousands of tastings and tours in production companies (inluso Moet & Chandonne) and is at the right distance from other towns equally nice or larger.

How did we get from Rotterdam to Champagne? By car!

6 girls, 2 cars, 4:30 hours of travel, lots of chatter and too much laughter!

Can you get there by train? Absolutely, but with 1 or more changes and practically never under 5h and €100 per person one way. I would say that if you have the availability of a car it is convenient from every point of view.

The visit to the winery

We spent a lot of time looking for a winery available for our next week-end in Champagne and that had a tour in English, so I recommend you search and book well in advance (many leave the possibility of free cancellation until a few days before).

The winery and production company we visited is called Atelier Boizel 1834. It is also located on the Champagne road I mentioned before and offers different types of tours and tastings with different prices. We chose the “half way” which, with €60, made us having a tour of the cellar, we listened to the guide who made us travel mentally in the past, through the story of this family and also showing us their  oldest bottles from the private collection.

At the end of the tour we tasted 2 Champagnes, a white wine and a rosé worth about €140 per bottle.

The tour, incuding the tasting lasted 1 and half hour, and I would say it was worth it.

What we have visited durint the Champagne week-end

I must be honest, the area is to revisit with the hope of finding a better weather, in fact the wind and rain did not make us enjoy our week-end in Champagne as we would have liked, although we cannot complain.

Epernay is a very small town with 3 huge churches in proportion, also houses the Champagne Museum, and is very lively both day and night, with a variety of restaurants and pubs to choose from for all tastes.

A 15 minute drive away is Hautviller, which is on a hill, and it is the ideal place for panoramic views. To go from one town to another you will cross a road in the middle of the vineyards, little to add: pure spectacle.

Reims, last stop of this weekend was the largest town. Unfortunately the weather was not kind to us and the rain did not allow us to visit this “little Paris”. It gave me the impression of being very elegant and I would have liked to have been able to turn it calmly and without the umbrella.

Also in Reims the cathedral, Notre Dame, is older than the one in Paris. In fact, although its construction began in 1211, it was finished in 1275, while the most famous Parisian “sister” dates back to 1345.

Where we slept

We were 6 ladies, and it means we needed space, more bedrooms and at least 2 bathrooms. We had alternatives but not too many.

We ended up in a beautiful house, just finished and walking distance to everything we had to do in Épernay. The place’s name is Magnum 80 and if you need 3 bedrooms and a garden, if you want space, if you have kids this is the place to book.

For 2 nights we paid €105 each and we found in the apartment much more than you normally find in terms of coffee, tea, dishwasher tablets, toppings…

In short, a journey to be redone by adding other stages. It is really nice and also enough time to go to the Champagne for a week-end.

And have you ever been in this area of France?

I read you in the comments while sipping a glass of champagne!!!

See you soon