Rather than trundle down to the south-west of France at the expense of petrol, tyres and sanity, this time we opted for a more luxurious approach. Well, in terms of hotels, at any rate. The ferry from Portsmouth to Bilbao proved …educational, as we dropped into the world of the mini-cruise complete with a blubber-ridden sun deck, evening “cabaret” and excruciatingly poor poker playing (of which we took full advantage). In fairness, the trip down to Bilbao was uneventful and dropped us at the start of six days of some epic roads criss-crossing the Pyrenees.
Hotels were a far cry from our staple diet of 15€-per-night Formule 1 rooms as we’d pre-booked some paradores…which proved to be exceptional.