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Itinerary Côte Vermeille

 
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Chapelle de la Salette

The Vermillion Coast is a hymn dedicated to light and colour. The first village you find is the most famous of all the Catalan villages

Collioure is curled up between its bell-tower and its Royal Castle, both at the water’s edge. Here the streets echo to the sounds of life to the rhythm of the sardanes. Collioure is the anchovy fishermen, wine growers in love with their soil and memories of artists such as Matisse and Derain.
Following the N114, five kilometres from there, lies Port-Vendres, a lively fishing village and commercial port.
The village, with its gay colours, organises its life around the fishing boats. The fish auction is well known with its multicoloured fish and is an unforgettable visit.
Continuing along the road, between the vineyards and the Mediterranean Sea, the bay of Paulilles is a superb creek.
6 Km further down the coast, is Banyuls-sur-Mer; an attractive village that has given its name to the wine that comes from the terraced vineyards; it is also the hometown of Maillol, the great sculptor, whose beautiful bronze ladies are presented to the public at the Métairie Museum.
Following on down the N114, and nearing Spain there is a very rugged coastline for some 10 kilometres. Between Cerbère and Banyuls, there is a multimedia underwater pathway in the sea organised by the Marine Reserve that enables you to discover the colourful fauna and flora of the Mediterranean Sea.
Cerbère, where the last of the Pyrénées Mountains reach the sea, the village has made the most of a cove that is the last port (and the last railway station!)
before Spain.
To return, take the D86 for about 15 km. After the chapel of the Salette, the Route Crêtes offers a fabulous view along the ridges, punctuated by ancient signal towers of the Madeloc and the Massane, the forts of Saint-Elme and Dugommier, and leads to the hermitage of Consolation, a haven of peace as well as being an ideal place for barbecues.

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