The second blogger road trip was less than 20 minutes away, so I already wanted to get back on the track. Not because we would have driven too little on this trip - no - with more than 3.200 km we clearly exceeded the distance, no, it was these wonderful moments that I missed spontaneously.
3 days, 3 vehicles, 3.000 kilometers
The second blogger road trip
The first road trip had a clear focus on dynamic routes and extremely dynamic vehicles. On the second road trip, I focused on “traveling instead of racing” and with Citroën we had an extremely well-suited partner here too. (The first road trip with Porsche and the very active routes across the Alps can be read “here”.)
With the French automobile manufacturer Citroën, the route selection naturally also had to take the toll-based “Autoroute” of the “Grand Nation”. And to understand how big our neighboring country is, there was only one possibility: The north-south crossing.
As in the first road trip, the race started again at the home address of the automobile manufacturer involved. In the case of the importer Citroën that was: COLOGNE.
The first stage, on the first day, led from the Jecken stronghold in western Germany across Belgium to the traditional race track: “Spa-Francorchamps”. The hospitality of car park directors known beyond the borders of Belgium ensured that we were denied a first group photo with the racetrack as a background - aaaaber - thanks to my (again / sic!) Perfect choice of participants, we were able to rely on the expertise of Tom Schwede fall back (an old motorsport intimate) and secure a quiet photo location with a racetrack background.
Since a stage of almost 900 km was on the program on the first day, the photo breaks were extremely short. And so there was the same picture on the Citroën road trip as on the Porsche road trip: Whenever we stopped, 7 bloggers jumped out of the vehicles and spontaneously looked for the best angles.
The day's destination was a small town on the French Channel coast: Ouistreham. The evening ended with a typical dish. For me it was: “broiler” with chips. Or as the French say: “Chicken and Fries”.
And yes - I've already eaten better and was quietly busy with my cell phone to find out where the famous US burger chain “McD” was probably hiding the nearest branch. (Normally, Normandy should be teeming with burger roasters, right?)
No matter - the mood at the table rose with my announcement for the next day:
1.200 km across France - from the canal down to the Coté
At first it sounds unspectacular - considering the speed limit on the French motorways, the constant toll stations and the desire of everyone involved to stop for photo stops from time to time, it quickly becomes clear - which is why the start was set at 7 a.m. . We still wanted to end up in sunlight.
What could be nicer than watching the sunset in the chic coastal town of Nice? And so - haste was the order of the day.
Thanks to the disciplined troop, extremely short smoking and pee breaks, as well as the constant view of the “advised” arrival time according to the navigation device - we actually arrived in Nice 15 minutes before sunset.
Ignoring all prohibition signs, we unceremoniously draped the 3 main characters of the road trip in front of the stone beach and the Mediterranean Sea beyond and everyone was happy to work with digital cameras. Just remember the loss of time when changing the old film cans 😉 - Thanks to the very interested promenade visitors, it was a real challenge to snap a few “vehicle photos”. Without joggers, cyclists, strollers, 70-year-old women and ignorant sidewalk paparazis on the photo.
Never in my life have I seen so many Citroën on a freeway as on the Autoroute from Paris to Lyon. It has become directly scary to me.
At the same time, on the first evening - after over 1.200 km of speed on the French autobahn - I understood what made a Citroën so appealing. It is this ability to travel relaxed. This talent was most evident in the often underestimated Citroën C5. This merciless rest in the vehicle, this wonderful hydropneumatic suspension, the comfortable seats. The C5 was the absolute surprise for me at the end of the entire trip.
Before the trip conclusion could be drawn - there was still a road trip day and another 1.200 km driving distance in front of the bumpers. And because at the end of such a mileage marathon some people felt the desire to know a fixed end point - the second night on the road trip was also a rather short one.
Shortly after the sun over the Coté d'Azur had started to find its way to the highest point in the firmament, the 6 bloggers, the 3 Citroën and the unforgiving organizer (* cough - I *) were on the street again. The sun's rays over the wonderful blue sea, a sky without any cloud and this wonderful route between Nice and Monaco then made the short-term wish not to choose the car route, but to stay as close to the sea as possible.
I think - if the other bloggers had only half as much fun and joy on this short stage between the cultivated south-French seaside resort and the stately city-state of Monaco as I did - then all the kilometers driven had paid off.
Monaco - Snobists World Cultural Heritage
No other city embodies so wonderfully the contradictions in my own worldview. I love this exclusively distinguished way of life and understand at the same time in no way, why one should do such a thing at all.
It may just be my very first memory of this city: it was many years ago and it was sunrise - when I first looked out over the Bay of Monaco - after 12 hours of driving on the motorway. It must have been love at first sight.
22:23 we were back in Cologne - in the parking lot on André-Citroën-Straße. An arrival time was originally planned, around 16pm :). To blame it on the traffic jam in front of the Gotthard, the cursed highway construction sites on the A5 or our desire for a quick burger shortly after the German-Swiss border would be unfair.
In the end it was for everyone - despite the enormous mileage and the really many hours in the car - an at least “interesting” experience of the bloggers involved with the Citroën brand, with many opportunities to “he” the French automobile manufacturer and its vehicles completely new -drive".
There were great routes. A wonderful feeling after 12 hours crossing the sea to see the sea off the coast of Nice. Talks with more or less depth and a group who understood themselves dazzlingly.
Before I go into the 3 vehicles we were given by Citroën, write a word or two about a really bad hotel in Cologne, 2 more or less beautiful hotels in France and “last but not least” about the bloggers we drove with - I would like to take this opportunity to thank the partners!
- Thanks to the “brave” bloggers!
- Thanks to Citroën Germany!
- Thanks to Vodafone!
..look back soon, for more information about the Citroën DS4, the DS5 and the C5 - as well as: Tom Schwede, Mario Lehmann, David Hoffmann, Peter Pölzlbauer, Daniel Bönninghausen and the film and photo expert Camillo Pfeil!
All until today (28 / 09 /) appeared contributions to the RoadTrip: