La Belle Etoile Arras
ZA Les Alouettes, Saint-Nicolas-lez-Arras, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, 62223, France
More about Arras
memorial tablet to British soldiers
Life of the Virgin
Travel to Vimy Ridge
We are planning to visit Arras next spring and would like to see Vimy Ridge. How do we get there from Arras?
Re: Travel to Vimy Ridge
It's only 12 km NE of Arras so even a taxi should be possible. I believe there are buses which would take you close enough to walk to the site, probably best checked locally.
I found it extremely interesting on a visit a few years back. There are areas of reconstruction of trenches and you can really get the feel of how it must have been. The distance between the two 'lines' is not very far, near enough to recognize faces!
I have visited Arras a couple of times and found it a very attractive town of the Flemish type, two huge central squares with beautiful buildings of that style. In fact I need to go again because I found out only last year that my Grandfather is commemorated on the big Arras war memorial. Good old internet.
Travel Tips for Arras
Saint-Vaast - more spots
Here you see more views of Saint-Vaast cathedral:
1) an aisle of the church with a precious carpet against the wall;
2) the orgue, which is not so beautiful as the church would deserve;
3) the high altar;
4) a memorial tablet dedicated to the one million soldiers of the British Empire who died during World War I and who mostly rest in France.
Like many towns in Northern France, als Arras has its giants. Their names are Colas and Jacqueline and they were born in 1891, even if they had belonged to the popular tradition since 1812, when their names appeared in a song composed for a celebration in Arras.
These two wicker manikins are 6.25 metres high and wear the clothes of 18th- and 19th-century local peasants.
They were destroyed during WWI, remade after the war and they died again in 1940. They won't be reborn before 1981. The present giants are only 4 metres high and they have got a son.
Saint Jean Baptiste - inside: paintings
This is the masterpiece of Saint Jean Baptiste: a Deposition by Pieter Paul Rubens, whose mannerism is evident in Christ's body, that looks green. I particularly love the blond Madeleine, painted with a lot of curves, in contrast with the stiffness of the other characters.
Apart from Rubens's painting, worth remarking are also the painted windows of the church, like the ones you see in the second and third photos.
Mont-Saint-Eloi Abbey (ruines)(3)
A second destruction happens in 1918 ww I when the Germain army did exploded the last floor of the tower. So you must know that the actually towers where about 4 m higher before 1918.
The visit is free . There are explicative boarder on the site, but don't give much informations.
Une deuxième destruction en 1918 (première guerre mondiale) quand l'armée Allemande fait exploser le dernier étage des tours. C'est ainsi que la hauteur actuelle est de 4 m moins haute qu'à l'origine.
La visite est gratuite. Il y a un panneau explicatif sur le site, mais il ne donne que peu d'information.
Mont-Saint-Eloi Abbey (ruines)(5)
On the corner of the town marked , there is the "café de l'abbaye" (see restaurant tips). Have a look upside the doors. There is an original sign-board. I don't know how old it is (as the owner don't) but it is original and made with material of the abbey. It means youth caffe. If you take the time have a look along the streets around and be attentive to it, you can find other examples of that sort of things.
Au coin de la place, face aux ruines, il y a le "Café de l'Abbaye" (voir restaurant tips) jetez un oeil au dessus de la porte, et vous verrez une enseigne. Je ne sais pas de quelle époque elle date (la propriétaire non plus) 1765 ? mais elle est originale et proviens de matériaux de l'abbaye. On y lit: Café de la jeunesse. Si vous prenez le temps de regarder autour de vous dans les rues alentour, vous trouverez de nombreux exemple de la sorte.