Nimes (30 Gard, Occitanie ) like many towns and cities on or close to the Mediterranean coast, has a long tradition of bullfighting and many of their festivities are centred around the “corridas”..
Most Brits will find the idea very unappealling, but that is no reason to avoid the whole of these festivals, as they are but one element of the events, and what you will miss is a tremendous festive Mediterranean atmosphere.
6 – 10 June 2019 are the dates for the Feria de Pentecote (Whitsun)
23 June – 20 July 2019 Festival de Nimes – no Feria, but one of the most important popular music festivals in France with many top line acts including ZZTop, Mark Knopfler, Tears for Fears and UB40! see www.nimes-tourisme.com
13 – 15 September 2019 are the dates for the Feria des Vendanges (Wine harvest) A Feria is a feast day often associated with bulls in the south of France.
Ferias – six days of festivities at Whitsun and three days in September with bullfights in the arena and abrivados and bandidos with local bulls. You can walk around and listen to peñas (small brass bands), dance the ‘Sévillane‘ in the bodegas until late at night, eat paella in a Camargue or Seville style village, go to concerts, watch water-jousting in the Canal de la Fontaine, enjoy the evening market, attend mass in Provencal in the cathedral and watch the Pégoulade, the opening procession at the Whitsun Féria.
From the point of view of wine, Nimes lies on the boundary between the Provence, Languedoc and Rhone, which is also reflected in the style of the local wines. But the Costieres de Nimes AC is classified as part of the Rhone appellations. The grape varieties for the red and rosé wines are Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Carignan, and Cinsault. For the white wines: White Grenache, Marsanne, Roussane as well as Clairette, Bourboulenc, Maccabeo and Rolle.
Well worth a visit would be the Chateau de la Tuilerie just to the south of Nimes where Chantal Comte produces some excellent wines – a good tasting room experience is guaranteed – and they even have their own helicopter landing pad if you are planning to arrive in style!
For more info on Nimes see http://www.ot-nimes.fr/
Stay in a small boutique hotel La Maison de Sophie very central in a listed building from the 1900s with a garden and an outdoor swimming pool.