North again and this time to the Champagne region and an aire set high on the hillside overlooking miles of vines. Mutigny is a tiny village with an enormous Mairie, a lovely church, a scatter of tidy, well kept houses and a small but perfectly formed aire de l’etang.
There are eight marked pitches but another four could squeeze in without bother. Across the lane from the aire entrance the land drops away steeply giving wonderful views across miles of vineyards.
With the hills lit up by the evening sunshine it is a truly lovely place to stand and admire the view while sipping from a glass of something cold. We liked it so much we stayed for two nights and are sure to return in the future.
After our two relaxing days among the vines we had to get moving on Tuesday as Eurotunnel was booked for lunchtime on Wednesday.
A longish haul north west through Reims and over excellent and mainly quiet roads towards Lille and then the motorway west to Gravelines for our last night. The traffic round Lille wouldn’t have raised an eyebrow in most of the UK but after a month on French roads it seemed manic. After a few miles it all settled down and we reached the aire at Gravelines in time for a late lunch.
The following morning we stopped off at Cite Europe for supplies (wine, beer and more wine) and filled with diesel before driving the short distance to Eurotunnel for our crossing home.
It had been a funny old trip what with strikes, fuel shortages, floods and iffy weather that went from thunder/rain to sunny/windy with a bit of everything in between. Despite all that we enjoyed it as we always do and Celine behaved herself impeccably the whole time.
Mainly due to the fuel situation it had been a shorter trip than our usual French tours but we still covered 1966 miles at an average of 26.2mpg. In only fifteen months Celine has driven over 15k faultless miles.