Wanderlust: Autochrome Photos of the French Countryside

This time of year is always a bit difficult for me. It’s the last stretch of Winter and yet Spring seems so far away. Naturally I start daydreaming about traveling to some lovely far off place. This time last year I was counting down the weeks until we left for our trip to France, so the French countryside is on my mind.

These antique autochrome photos of the French countryside are warming my heart a bit on this dreary February day as they remind me so much of the sights and scenes we say when we traveled through Aveyron. / (photo above) St. Marie bridge, Chamonix Valley, France

Le Cantal, St. Jacques and the Puy-Griou, Auvergne Mountains, France


Le Cantal, Chateau Anteroche, near Murat, Auvergne Mountains, France


Talloires, Annecy, France

images sourced from: Library of Congress, Autochrom Collection

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Les Plus Beaux Villages de France…a Honeymoon Post

Initially, our honeymoon plan was to go for our 1 year wedding anniversary, but plans change. And sometimes for the better!

Side note: If you would like to see some of our wedding photos, I posted them here.

A majority of our honeymoon will be spent in the Aveyron region of France where our friend Bruno is from and also he will be visiting the same time so we will be traveling together! Isn’t that great!?

Najac in Aveyron, France
Najac in Aveyron, France! We are going here for SURE! | image credit: Guias Viajar

DETOUR STORY: My husband owns a shop in Portland called Orn Hansen. Bruno owns a company called Bruno’s Artisans in which he represents European makers & designers most of whom are French. Around the time Bruno and Robby met, I had made an instashop for Adored Vintage called Attic in Aveyron. Robby showed Bruno Adored Vintage and also Attic in Aveyron and Bruno had wondered how I knew of Aveyron since he was born and raised there! (I can just picture him asking in his charming accent!)

Belcastel in Aveyron, France! You can picture me coming down this path wearing an Edwardian dress, right? I'll find wildflowers somewhere to hold...
Belcastel in Aveyron, France! You can picture me coming down this path wearing an Edwardian dress, right? I’ll find wildflowers somewhere to hold… | image credit: Wikimedia

Isn’t life funny sometimes? Also, the reason I named the instashop Attic in Aveyron is because in this region in France is a very small village named Rodelle and I like to pretend I was named after this place. (I wasn’t, my parents made up my name by combining the first two syllables of their first names and then adding a Lee) Father: ROlando Mother: DELia … RODEL-LEE. It’s a very common Filipino thing to do…

All right, back to honeymoon plans (how I do always go off topic?! Now you know what it is like to talk to me in real life…)

The village of Saint-Cirq-Lapopie overlooking the river Lot
The village of Saint-Cirq-Lapopie overlooking the river Lot (GASPPPP) | image credit: France Today

So, most of our honeymoon will be spent in the MOST BEAUTIFUL villages in France! You know this is a thing! They actually rate villages in France on beauty!! This is what Bruno emailed to us:

Les plus beaux villages de France is avery famous organisation which gives a very desirable label to some villages according to several criteria. When a village has this, there is always a sign at the entrance of the village, as it’s prestigious. With 10 “most beautiful villages of France”, the Aveyron has the biggest number of them in the country.

Did you read that last part? AVEYRON HAS THE BIGGEST NUMBER OF THEM IN THE COUNTRY. And that is where WE WILL BE! I know…I know!

Conques in Aveyron, France (YES, we must go here!) | image credit: Flickr
Conques in Aveyron, France (YES, we must go here!) | image credit: Flickr

But what about Paris, Rodellee? Will you be spending time in Paris? Of course we will silly! But I am much more excited about seeing the French countryside.

Since over a decade ago I have always said my dream vacation would be to travel around the French countryside. There will always be Paris, the city of love.

But you know I am not a city girl. You know I am a country girl at heart. Fields, mountains, sky, meadows, small towns, villages… OH YAS GIRL! At my very core, I am still the little girl at my grandfather’s farm in Carcar running around barefoot playing with the chickens and feeding the pigs.

Perhaps Robby will fall in love with the countryside like I have. My ultimate life dream is to have a modest home out in the country where I can have a garden. Peace and quiet. And be reasonably close to a small city or town.

One can dream. I mean after all, about 5 years ago I dreamed I would have a work studio with exposed brick, arched windows, and always have pastries and tea and coffee at the ready. And that dream already came true.

Counting down the weeks to Aveyron! Oh and Paris too! But that is for another post… and of course, what will I wear? Again… another post. Gosh…so much planning must still be done!

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