Sunday, May 10, 2015 / Stephanie / Exploration  

Vivers is a charming town settled along the right bank of the Rhone River.  At the center of the old town, atop the hill, Cathedral St-Vincent sits stunningly.  It is said to be the smallest cathedral in France, and dates from the 12th century.  We had prime access to Viviers from the closed pleasure boat harbor.  As we ate breakfast and planned a touring sort of day, passengers on cruise lines at the adjacent quay stepped ashore forming several small touring groups.  And so they were off, following their leaders who held tiny yellow flags high for all the group to see.   We, meanwhile, set off ourselves and between the narrow streets of town found signs marking the walking tour trail.  We wove all around the entire town; on and off of the marked walking tour trail.  We stopped at the Tourism Office for a map and learned of several hiking and biking trails in the area.  We browsed two, lovely ceramics shops.  We found a small grocer and replenished our produce.  At the grocer we took advantage of buying two bottles of Aredeche wine and getting two bottles for free.  We picked up two baguettes at the bakery and strolled back to Detour for lunch.  A street vendor caught our attention with the area's well-known sweet treat; we purchased a bag of Nougat produced in the neighboring town, Montelimar. Cathedral Saint-Vincent was open; we admired the cathedral from the inside and out.  I admired the cathedral's cat (there were cats everywhere in this town!) who after bathing on the alter, in a stained-glass window's sunbeam, came over to scratch his back against my leg.     Look closely at the rooftop of the cathedral and see... GARGOYLES!! We'd worked up an appetite along our stroll; and for once we made it back to the boat in time to enjoy a leisurely, mid-day meal.