I know Sète from one of my team at the office, who used to study in Montpellier. He said that I should go there if I love the port, fishing village and stuff. OMG. I adore them! The port and fishing village always excite me. I was once told that I was a bohemian and used to live by the mediterranean sea and my house was not far from the port, where I transport coffee (hence explains my deep interest of sea, port, style and coffee…).
There are two ways to go to Sète from Montpellier, by train (intercity train, costs only around 8 euros one way, around 30 min trip), or by bus. But the bus is rather far, I had to reach the bus station from the other way of the tram line. And my rental apartment was only 5 min walking from the main train station, so I think that was the easiest way.
I got the early train ticket (and surprisingly I was early for the train, that never occurred to me:p), but the thing is there was fire accident at Lunèl, one city that is in my train line (direction Bordeaux), so everything was postponed…..and after 3 hour of waiting frustration, the train was canceled.
This was quite the first time I got early and bought the ticket just to be efficient. Had I been late or last minute as usual, I’d know that the train got held up and I wouldn’t have bought the ticket and bought the bus ticket right away….
Bref. Under the 36 degree heat, I rushed to the tram line 2 from Place de la Comédie to Sabines, and there I waited for another hour for the bus to come…And finally, the bus number 102 that costed only 1,6 euros came and hopppppp, I was on the way and one hour later I arrived by the port of Sète! Yayyyyyy
My reflex was always go to the tourism office to get information on how to get around, and how to get to the beach. The information was not too sufficient, where I needed to ask a lot of questions before I got the info on bus ticket, map, etc. I followed more on my instinct to get the bus stop (it’s quite tricky!!!), and saw around.
The port view, the fish market were all calling me to come closer, but the urge to go bathing in the sea was more dominant since I needed to combat the heat!!
I met an old lady by the bus stop and she was Parisian like me, and she knows the place too well that she showed me the map, which beach is nicer, etc. We talked while waiting for the bus , and without knowing, we already hopped on the bus and headed to the beach together. She recommended go to Corniche for its natural beach and explaining the whole area to me on the bus. I had my local guide 🙂
So the 12 km coast line lied along the mediterranean sea, from Lazaret, Corniche (2 km from city centre where we took the bus) to Marseillan beach (some parts are not natural ones…).
There must have been some problem with bus schedule since it was too crowded on it but we managed to get on and get off at Corniche.
The beach was not as beautiful as the ones in Montpellier, but it was ample, not too crowded with children, but however there were some who were creative enough with their sand castles, and had manners 🙂
Despite the tight schedule (well, I departed from Montpellier late already, thank you train!!), we swam till 19h and tried to catch up with the last shuttle bus to get to the train station on time. Based on schedule, there was no more bus to go back to Montpellier, but I heard that there was a train back to Montpellier in the evening.
So me and my new friend dried ourself by the bus stop, and the bus didn’t come as scheduled. i didn’t want to take any risk and decided to walk to the train station. Madame Colette (my new friend) didn’t want to leave me alone walking so she accompanied me to the city centre together. I was so touched, since she didn’t have to, but she just wanted to make sure that I wouldn’t miss my train. So we walked fast – passing the beautiful view on the street, the sea, the beaches, the jammed street (prime time for cars, I think the vancanciers wanted to go back to their hotel/apartment before dinner time – at the same time) – and I didn’t have time to at least stop for a minute to enjoy it since I was already in 2.5 km marathon walk!!! We arrived at the city center and Colette and I parted ways where I had to continue running for another 10-15 minutes (If I didn’t get lost!). We hugged, and I felt like I had known her for a long time. It’s a strange yet the beautiful part of travel right, to have met somebody like this and experiencing what was happening….
I ran passed the fish market, the place where the fishers come and sell the fish to the auction or sale in the wee hour. I ran passed the gorgeous Molière theatre, the beautiful port and bridges, felt like casting for Baywatch series, imagine bullimic Yasmine Bleeth or skinny Pamela Anderson – without bikini. Or maybe it was more like panting and almost dying figurine, who needed saving!
It was almost 20h when I left the beach and I got to the station by 20h58, just in time for the 21h train (OMG, I really ran for my life) – and the fire accident was just ceased so the train was 25 minute late….. :-)))))))
The greatest part of the story was not when I finally got to the beach and managed to catch up with my train back, or the chicken popcorn that I ate as a dinner treat after. No.
I told the story to Raphael, my lovely host, and he said “why didn’t you just call me up. I have a car, I could pick you up there, instead”. Daaayng.
I’ll come back Sète, I’ll come back 🙂