In the heart of Armagnac country, Nogaro is a great place to take a relaxing break and enjoy a degustation or two.
Armagnac is the oldest brandy distilled in France, and in Nogaro, in the Gers region, it’s made in delicious abundance.
But you may, like me, might find that instead of chilling out you’ll be working out – on the race track. For this is the home of the Circuit Paul Armagnac.
Nogaro’s Famous Race Course
The purpose built circuit was opened in 1960, and it was here that four times world Champion Frenchman Alain Prost started his career in 1974 and fellow Grand Prix drivers Arnoux, Berger and Patrese fine-tuned their talents.
If you fancy hurtling round the course as I did (brilliant) from 50 euros will get you three hot laps in a sporty Renault saloon being driven by a professional driver, 250 euros gets you five laps driving yourself in a single seater albeit behind a pace car.
And from 120 euros gets you a flat out two laps in a Formula 2 car cleverly designed to take a passenger and driven by a champion. It’s a unique concept to Nogaro and gives you the ride of a lifetime but, take it from me, don’t do it on a full stomach. And, be warned, you might need that Armagnac afterwards to calm your shattered nerves.
For somewhere to stay in the area, there’s no better place to relax and enjoy the beautiful countryside than at the Chateau d’Izaute. Set in beautiful grounds, with gorgeous rooms, this very beautiful B&B is the perfect antidote to the fast pace of life…
More details on tourism in the area: www.tourism-midi-pyrenees.co.uk; www.toulouse-visit.com; www.tourisme-gers.com