A Tour of the Parc Regional of Camargue
As you drive through the few roads that crisscross the Camargue, you will usually be within the boundaries of the Camargue, http://www.parc-camargue.fr. Unlike many state and national parks in the US, this area is privately owned and utilized within the rules imposed by the state. The principal owners are the ranchers ( Manadiers), with the help of their gardians keep it for grazing their wide-horned bulls and their broad-bellies white horses. Some claim that the Moors imported and Arab strain and is prized for its solid endurance. The curved horned bull may have been imported by Atila the Hun. If not participating in a bloodless bullfight or may end up in the wine-rich regional stew ( beware!), the stew is called la gardianne de taureau.
Where to find the birds
Up north a few miles from Stes -Maries-De-La -Mer, the main town in the Camargue, is a private reserve called ” The Parc Ornithologique du Pont de Gau”. On some 150 acres of marsh and salt lands, birds are very welcome and protected ( but not confined what so ever). Injured birds are treated and kept in large pens, to be released if and when ready. Boardwalks ( including a short, child friendly loop past the easy viewing stands) snake over the wetlands. The longest one leading to a blind a half hour silence, binoculars in hand, can reveal unexpected treasures.. Near the park entrance is the hostellerie -Pont-de-Gau which offers hearty meals much favored by local ranchers. Pont-de-Gau, 5kms ( 3 miles) from