Nîmes notes

a picture diary from a Roman town in the south of France


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The trambus of Nîmes

trambusThe ending station of the Nîmes trambus is in front of the Arènes.

The trambus is a combination of – as you can guess from the name – a tram and a bus. No rails needed, looks like a long bus, but otherwise the concept comes from a tram. And having now tested it once (no, twice, I went back and forth), it works!

In my humble opinion, the route is much more clear than those of the busses. It’s also fairly fast, and also frequent (at least during the day). It’s not as silent as the modern trams, but it’s supposed to be more environment friendly – the tram bus doesn’t use gasoline or diesel, but electricity. The ride cost one euro, and you can purchase the ticket when entering. Just don’t forget to stamp it!

Some people of course criticize the meaning and the cost (79 million euros) of a new type of bus which has (so far) just one line. It circulates between the Arènes and the commercial centre near the highway entrance. New lines are planned, of course.

Well, I don’t say anything to that. Just that I liked my ride. I will post during the next few days a few pictures taken in and from the bus.

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Chrysanthemums

mumsThis one comes a little late, but as the flowers are so beautiful, I’ll add it anyway.

The chrysanthemums were out on the street for the All Saints Day, or La Toussaint. This year I didn’t go to the graves, but here you can see a picture from last year. At the time we by chance found the grave of Nîmes’ hero, the legendary French bullfighter Nimeno II.


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I heart N.O.

nimes olympicI just loved these t-shirts! I’d buy one if I’d use t-shirts… Or if I were a football fan. But now I just take a photo of them.

The N.O. means the football team of Nîmes, which for some reason is called Nîmes Olympique. A little like Marseille Olympique or Olympique Lyonnais. Where does the olympics come here, I wonder… But what is no wonder, is the Nîmes theme’s nickname is “the crocodiles”!


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Zanotta’s coming

zanottaZanotta is an Italian design company, apparently very popular in Nîmes. They seem to have an exhibition coming up, in the furniture shop Domus. The picture is taken during the feria, which explains the table and the benches… Otherwise you will find this view at Place de la Calade in front of the Nîmes’ theatre. The exhib will run from Sep 27, 2013 until Mar 26, 2014. Entrance is on the other side of the building, at 11, rue de l’Horloge.


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Statue of Emperor Augustus

statue_augusteThe bronze statue of Emperor Augustus, or Caius Julius Caesar Octavianus Augustus (27 BC – 14 AD), is located in the premises of the Porte d’Auguste (hence the naming of the gate).

The statue is a copy of a statue in Vatican, and it was bought by the city in 1934. Rumours, that it was a gift by Mussolini and that the Germans had melted it, are false (so it says here).


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Porte d’Auguste, seen from inside

portedaugusteThe European Heritage Day’s are unfortunately always  at the same time as the autumn feria of Nîmes. So, I never remember it, or, have no time to go to see any of the places usually closed to public. This time I did see one, though.

While I was waiting for the folklore parade to start, I went to see the Roman city gate of Porte d’Auguste from inside. Normally you can’t get in (it’s surrounded by fences), but now the small gate was open, and you could stroll around in your own pace. A few people in additition to myself had noticed it.

The lens I had in my camera gave no choice of a wider view, so this time the picture is just of one of the main gateways. In total there are four: two main gates in the middle and two side gates. And what is interesting, is to see how much lower the original city used to be!