Travel|Étretat: Once in a Lifetime 法國諾曼第北端象鼻海岸(含交通攻略)

Étretat 實在是始終如一。

在奧賽美術館看了莫內一百多年前畫下的 Étretat 象鼻海岸,再親眼見到濃霧散去後漸漸露出的象鼻懸崖,才知道這個地方就算日夜接受海水與大風侵蝕,仍然保存著它最原始的樣貌。

今年來到巴黎,本就打算安排一個近郊一日遊。原本在距離巴黎約一個半小時火車車程的盧昂、亞眠等小城之間猶豫,沒想到最後選了一個需要搭火車再轉乘公車,單趟行程要耗上三個多小時,位於諾曼第北部的海邊小鎮 Étretat,這個被譽為印象畫派發源地,歷來不斷吸引許多作家、藝術家造訪的勝地。儘管一整天舟車勞頓,實際待在象鼻海岸的時間只有短短三個多小時,然而「不虛此行」依舊是這趟一日遊的最佳註腳。

Étretat has hardly changed. It looks almost the same as the one Monet painted.

Before traveling to Étretat, I visited the Musée d’Orsay, appreciating the beautiful scenery painted by Claude Monet. Not until witnessing the spectacularity of this amazing place myself, did I realize how little this place had changed. It remains almost unchanged.

As I was planning my trip to Paris this year, I’ve made up my mind to have a one-day trip outside Paris. However, I couldn’t decide which city to go to, either Rouen or Amiens, which were both cities 1.5 hrs train from Paris center. I had no idea why I chose Étretat at last. Situated in North Normandy, it was 2hrs train from Paris and had to take a 1hr bus ride. Étretat attracts writers and artists all the time, and it is even said to be the origin of impressionism. Although it was extremely exhausting of all the traffic, the three hours we spent at Étretat was an experience once in a lifetime.

This was painted by Claude Monet in the 19th century. Shot at Musée d’Orsay.


.How to go 怎麼去?

 

從巴黎市中心要到上諾曼第的 Étretat 象鼻海岸,交通易達性其實不高。

首先,要到 Gare de Paris-Saint-Lazare 火車站,搭開往諾曼第的火車(火車站的月台時刻表,要看 Île-de-France 的另外一個。Île-de-France 火車的目的地仍然是整個巴黎大區,另一個才是出巴黎省的車班,但我忘了那個告示牌的確切名稱了⋯⋯)。

車票我事先就在 SNCF 官網上訂好了才 15 歐的優惠票。(當初訂票時發現,用法文網頁訂票,比用英文網頁還便宜。另外,訂票時可以留意一下票券上有沒有座位資訊。有些車班沒有對號座,採上車有空位就坐的方式。)車程兩個多小時(途中會經過 3 站),搭到 Le Havre 這個港口城,在這裡轉乘公車。

開往 Étretat 的公車,淡、旺季班次差非常多。若要一日往返巴黎和象鼻海岸,建議一定要將時刻表查清楚,火車銜接公車的時間一定要算準,不然錯過了就得等到隔天了。車次表可以在 Étretat 官網下載。由於時刻表只有法文,這裡來個法文小教學好了 lol

LUN AU SAM:星期一到星期六
SAM:星期六
LUN AU VEN:星期一到星期五
MER、SAM:星期三、星期六
DIMANCHES & JOURS FÉRIÉS SAUF 1ER MAI:星期日和放假日,五月一日除外

ÉTÉ:夏天(藍色區塊,2017年的話,是 7 月 9 號到 9 月 3 號)

綠色就是整年都會行駛的車班,橘色則是區間車。

我當初搭的是 24 號公車,班次比 17 號多一些,不過兩班都可以到象鼻海岸。

出了 Le Havre 火車站,到公車站牌 B 等車。車票一律上車的時候跟司機買,一個人 2 歐。

我們到 Le Havre 這個港口城時,距離公車發車時間還有兩個多小時。於是過了一個小橋,先到對面的購物中心晃晃、吃中餐(以及連免費 WIFI)。

It takes time and effort to search through how to take public transportation to Étretat. But don’t worry, I’m here to give you a quick summary of how to get to this scenic place.

First of all, you should take the train bound for Normandy at Gare de Paris-Saint-Lazare (Paris-Saint-Lazare Station). When finding which platform to go to, search the bulletin other than  Île-de-France. Sorry I forgot the exact name…. For Île-de-France, it means the train is still in the Paris Province. However, you’re going to Normandy, so, search for the other one!

Going to Étretat, you should travel to Le Havre first, and then take a bus at Le Havre Station. I got my train ticket in advance on the SNCF website, with discounts for only 15 euros per ticket. Sometimes, using the original French version of the website, you’ll get cheaper tickets! I don’t know why…, but when I tried the English one and the French one, I found the price juicier in the French one. Interesting. Besides, be aware of the seat information on your order! For a lot of times, some trains do not provide assigned seats. You can sit on whatever vacant seats you like. If you’d like to make sure you have seats in the 2hr-train-ride, make sure you have seat numbers printed on your order. By the way, there are three stops between Paris-Saint-Lazare and Le Havre.

Timetables of buses to Étretat vary greatly in different seasons. If you’d like to have a one-day-trip from Paris to Étretat just like I did, I’ll highly suggest that you figure out all the buses available at the time period, and be sure to arrange the time of your train arrival and the bus departure. You can get the bus timetable on the official website of Étretat. Bus tickets are sold on board. Ask your bus driver for ticket! It’s 2 euros per persons. Due to all the bus information is only in French, now I’ll give you some useful translations of the form lol

LUN AU SAM:From Monday to Saturday
SAM:Saturday
LUN AU VEN:From Monday to Friday
MER、SAM:Wednesday, Saturday
DIMANCHES & JOURS FÉRIÉS SAUF 1ER MAI:Sunday and holidays, except May 1

ÉTÉ:Summer (As you can see the blue region. For 2017, it’s Jul.1 to Sep.3)

For the green region, it means regular buses all year round; while for the orange one, it is only available in period times.

When I got to Le Havre in April, I took bus No.24. No.17 and No.24 can both take you to Étretat, but No.24 comes more frequent.

When I arrived at Le Havre Station, there was still 2 hours for the next bus to come. As a result, we hung around and had lunch (and got free WIFI access) in a shopping mall just across the station.

Le Havre

公車一路蜿蜒,一下開上狹窄的鄉間小路,一下又回到高速公路上,有時候能看得到海,但大部份時候是會出現成群牛羊的田園風光。一個多小時後,在 Étretat Mairie (Étretat 市政廳)下車,往前穿過賣紀念品的店家與餐廳,就能看到隔著英國和法國的英吉利海峽了。再往左右望望,小象和公象就在不遠處。

After you get on the bus to Étretat, you’re only one step close! Roads to Étretat are all narrow and winding. You can see pastoral views and also oceanic sceneries. No more than 1.5hr, get off at the stop “Étretat Mairie. Walk through the restaurants and souvenir shops; then you’ll see the English Channel right in front of you. The iconic Chalk Cliffs were right around the corner.

Étretat

Étretat


Bonjour, Étretat

 

 

剛到 Étretat 的時候起大霧,能見度極低,儘管海灘上人不少,仍然有種世界末日與冷酷異境的感覺,期盼了很久的象鼻海岸當然也隱身在濃霧當中。(順道一提,《世界末日與冷酷異境》是我最喜歡的村上春樹作品。雖然我並沒有把他的作品全部看完⋯⋯)。心一沉,心想花了這麼多時間搭車來到這裡,竟然什麼都看不到。然而過不了多久,又安慰自己,c’est la vie,沒關係,那就有再來一次的理由了。

As we arrived at Étretat, the fog was so thick that we could hardly see anything, not to mention the famous Chalk Cliffs. Hao said that the misty view was kinda apocalyptical. I was disappointed at first since I could see nothing here. However, not long, I told myself c’est la vie and maybe it was a hint to make me visit here again.

Hao 說這一系列的照片看起來有種災難感 lol

Mysteriously misty

Étretat

 

在海灘上玩了一會,霧仍舊很大,景致依然超現實。抱著「霧或許待會就會散的期待」,慢慢爬上了懸崖。其實我是個怕高的人,不過人生本不該設限,就算害怕,也盡量在自己能接受的範圍內多去體驗、去嘗試。

We spent sometime at the beach. Nevertheless, the fog was still so thick and the scenery so surreal even when we left the beach. Embracing the thought of “perhaps the weather would be nice afterwards”, we slowly climbed up the cliff. Frankly speaking, I’m acrophobia, but life should not be circumscribed only because of my personal fear. As a result, even though I was freakingly scared, I still pushed myself to experience all things in the way I could bear with.

 

站在什麼防護措施都沒有的懸崖峭壁邊,完全體會到 sublime 這個詞的含義-對大自然的壯麗感到極度敬畏。

想起多年前在柏林上藝術史的暑期課程時,當時的課堂報告就選了浪漫主義與自然為主題,雖然那時候讀了寫了什麼現在都不記得了,但對大自然的敬畏這一點倒還是印象深刻,而以前上文學理論課時讀到的 sublime,這時也才真真切切感受到了。

有趣的是,這個下面就是英吉利海峽的危險峭壁旁邊,只擺著一個告示牌,上面寫著:

「注意!這個懸崖很危險,請小心個人生命安全。」

完全不架設任何防護措施。雖然說防護措施破壞美景,但就有一種你自求多福啊的感覺,好像有點法國。不過在這麼天然的美景之上,沒有任何人工的防護措施感覺才是比較明智的做法,個人的安全本來就該自己負責,而非仰賴外在的保護。

Standing beside the cliff without any protection, I suddenly got to know the real meaning of “sublime”–in awe with the supreme wonder of nature.

It made me recall the memory of taking art history courses in summer school in Berlin. In the final presentation of the class, romanticism and nature was the exact topic I chose. Albeit I remembered almost nothing then, I still had very deep impression of the awe and sublimity of nature. What was more, in my Literary Theory class dated back to my graduate school in Chinese literature, “sublime” was also a key word discussed greatly. I did not understand it completely until I was standing beside the cliff, with waves of the English Channel flipping the shore.

Interestingly enough, in this dangerous natural spot, there only stood a signboard, which said,

“Attention! The cliff is very dangerous. Be aware of your own safety.”

It seemed French to me. Without any protection measures, it just told you take care of yourself. Of course all the protections like fences would definitely jeopardize nature beauty, and people should take responsibility for their own safety instead of relying on exterior protections, but the “take care of yourself” sign still seemed funny, at least from an Asian’s view.

 

過沒多久,霧漸漸散了,雖然象鼻清晰的時間很短,一會兒霧又聚攏回來,然而霧氣就這樣來回聚散輪迴了好幾次,宛如生命的跌宕。本來以為看不到的象鼻,如今清楚地出現在眼前,無論是小象還是公象,都讓人不禁再次讚嘆大自然的鬼斧神工,也對自然更多了幾分敬畏。

Not long after we climbed up the cliff, the fog finally faded! Though the view was in a cycle of misty and clear, a bit like life, I was so grateful I was lucky enough to see the magnificent scene. I was once disappointed that I was not able to see the Chalk Cliff this time, but now, not only the little elephant but also the papa elephan were clearly shown up in front of me. That magical feeling was beyond words. I was astonished by the sublimity of nature once more.

Finally

 

Do you see the little elephant?

Panoramic view of Étretat

 

離開前,我們都覺得來到海邊應該要試試當地的海鮮。

靠海的 Étretat,海鮮價格非常實惠。然而我們錯估份量,點了一大一小的「一人份」海鮮拼盤,餐點一上桌馬上後悔⋯⋯點一個大拼盤兩個人吃就綽綽有餘了。食物新鮮,尤其生蠔實在美味(但我和 Hao 一致認為巴黎 Breizh Café 的三號生蠔更上一層樓)。若要說缺點,就是蝸牛類實在太多,吃多了有點噁心 lol (這趟去巴黎,食物都隨便拍 XD)

Before leaving Étretat, Hao and I both agreed that we should absolutely try the seafood.

All the seafood at Étretat was of very reasonable price. However, we overestimated how much we could eat and order a big and a small plateau de mer…, which was way too much. The food was fresh and delicious (though we felt that oysters at Breizh Café tasted even better). If there was something to be picky about, that would definitely be the snails. When you ate too many snails, you felt gross lol.

 

美景當前,三個多小時實在太短,但我還是慶幸當初選擇了這個交通易達性不那麼高又很自然的地方,作為我們一日遊的目的地。(天知道我是個多不喜歡自然的人 lol)儘管去了不同地方,絕對也會留下深淺不同的回憶與經驗,然而不得不說,身為亞森羅蘋《奇巖城》原型的 Étretat 象鼻海岸,實在是一生中至少要拜訪一次的美景勝地。

Three hours passed so quickly as the beautiful scenery and great food were right in front of us. I was so thankful I chose this natural place as our one-day-trip destination, though it was not so easy to go to. Of course I would have different memories if I went to another place, but I have to say, man, as the archetype of L’Aiguille Creuse by Arsène Lupin, Étretat was undoubtedly a place that one should visit once in a lifetime.

For more photos, follow me on Instagram(@eliseai)!

 

2 Comments

    • May 15, 2017 / 4:30 pm

      It’s definitely an amazing place! Yes, it is still breathtaking even when the weather isn’t that nice. You should absolutely visit here sometime! It’s worth it.

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