Saturday, 23 June 2012

Doors and Windows of Boulogne

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 1

If the eyes are the windows of the soul, what possible wonders lie behind the windows and doors of a European city?

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 2

I didn’t set out to photograph all of the windows and doors in Boulogne-sur-Mer, but as we began our tour of the walled old town, I found myself captivated by the charming façades with their colourful window boxes, filigree balconies and old-fashioned shutters.

 Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 3

And the doors… how could I forget the doors, each one bright and colourful and unique?  I began to dream about living within the old town walls, swooning over the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Boulogne and visiting the medieval castle.

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 4

Of course, not everyone can live within the walls, but the houses on the outskirts of the old town and leading into the modern city were no less beautiful.

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 5

In fact, in many ways they were more interesting and sometimes a little bit gritty.

La Casa San Martin Boulogne France

Many of the houses were of significant historical value, such as the building above which is the Casa San Martin.  Once the consulate of Argentina in France, this is the house where José de San Martín, liberator of Argentina, Chile and Peru, died.

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 7

Can you imagine what these old houses have seen? These houses have stood while countless generations went through history, with the French revolution and the fall of the monarchy, and through the First and Second World Wars.

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 8

Many of the buildings had offices on the ground floor, such as the one above, but I still noticed the ornate balconies and decorations adorning this building.

Some of the buildings weren’t quite as pretty, such as the one below, but it still had a certain kind of charm, non?

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 9

Boulogne really is a beautiful city, especially the walled old town. While we sometimes part places with a bittersweet sense of longing, I can say that our little four day journey into the north of France was so easy and I am quite certain that I will be visiting Nord Pas-de-Calais and Boulogne again soon.

Windows and Doorways of Boulogne France 10

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23 comments

  1. I how there's so much beauty in something so simple as a doorway. Great photos!

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  2. and add Belgium to it next time.. also sooo easy and sooo close
    nice reportage, I really enjoyed looking at the way you looked

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  3. Totally fabulous..gorgeous places and cool doors and they all carry such a beautiful vibe..I am a dor and window kind of girl..fascinated with them..thanks for this visual feast..so beautiful Emm!
    Victoria

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  4. What a lovely post, Emm! I enjoyed your commentary as much as I did the photos and couldn't agree more with your musings. I had no idea Boulogne was so close to Calais - that must make it pretty convenient to get to from the UK as well. Thanks for sharing!

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  5. This is an awesome post. The doors and windows are so beautifully captured in your pictures. Looking forward to seeing more...

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  6. So old and so pretty. Miss a good walk in a European street. Thank you for taking me there :)

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  7. I always like the ones with the flower boxes by the window. It adds so much more character to the building. The narrow doors and unique windows make me wonder what is beyond them on the other side.

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  8. these are wonderful! charm that we lack here across the pond. :o)

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  9. Old doors and windows look so much more interesting and have me thinking what lies inside, that doesn't happen with most of the bland boring modern ones that I walk past all to frequently.

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  10. Old doors and windows look so much more interesting and have me thinking what lies inside, that doesn't happen with most of the bland boring modern ones that I walk past all to frequently.

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  11. I have never been to Boulogne but it looks like an interesting city – I also love to look and take photos of windows and doors – how about benches? Some are quite different too.

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  12. Doors and windows are fascinating and tell a lot about what goes on inside :-)

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  13. I love the sense of place of Boulogne-sur-Mer, particularly the Vielle Ville with its Vielle Ville with its Cathedral Basilica of Notre Dame, Chateau and Marie.You can sense Napoleon's Grande Armee massing there to invade Britain and Hitler turning it into a fortress.

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  14. Beautiful pictures. I love the different shapes and colours of windows. Looks like a great town to just walk around and enjoy.

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  15. Nice photos. I think the second photo down might show some very old windows, but I don't know enough about French architecture to be sure.

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  16. Lovely post! Special and wonderful doors/windows. Feels slightly bored with what we have here in Norway..:-)

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  17. Love all these pictures! I think doors and windows are such cool subjects!

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  18. @ Melizza: Thank you! It is the first time I've really noticed how gorgeous and unique they can be.

    @ This is Belgium: We enjoyed our little trip so much that it is really just a matter of time before we visit Belgium too. Glad you enjoyed the post.

    @ Victoria: Thank you! They are fascinating, aren't they, with their promise of what lies beyond.

    @ Candace: Thank you, I am so glad you liked it. Yes, Boulogne is so easy to get to and I have no doubt I will return. Belgium is really close to Calais too.

    @ Dominic: Thank you! I really enjoyed Boulogne and am certain there will be more posts to come about the town!

    @ Ivanhoe: Always a pleasure. I don't know how I survived in London for so long before discovering the thrill of European streets but now I can't get enough!

    @ AVCr8teur: Me too! I love window boxes and wish more people took such pride in their homes, us included!

    @ BonBon: Awww, I've seen some posts about the most charming little towns in the USA and Canada! You just have to keep looking, charm is always around the corner if you have a tourist's eye.

    @ William: thank goodness London has its other charms because yes, there are too few pretty residential streets here.

    @ Vagabonde: Heh, I've not yet fallen for benches but you never know. There are so many things I love that I never even thought about before I started photographing them.

    @ RuneE: Absolutely!

    @ Dáithaí C: Agreed. This town made me want to learn more about its history, that is for sure.

    @ Lu-Gerda: France is certainly a dream if you enjoy walking, as I do. The towns we visited were just lovely.

    @ Jenny: Well done! Those are very old indeed and were on the old castle.

    @ Spiderdama: Thank you! Don't ever feel bored with Norway, you have such a lovely style of architecture there.

    @ Carol: I agree and will certainly try capture more in future.

    @ MeandBeirut: Thank you very much.

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  19. lovely doors and windows and i love those balconies.

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  20. @ LifeRamblings: I love the balconies too!

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  21. I love take photos if I come across with beautiful windows, doors, frames or archway... They keep a great history I think!

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  22. @ Daria: I agree Daria. I really enjoy taking photos of doors and windows in each city I visit.

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