Having nearly missed the ferry on our last trip to France because of traffic congestion in Dover, we allowed an extra hour for the queues in Dover only to find no traffic, so sat on the quay for 1.5 hours. For a new experience, we chose a ferry to Dunkirk.
Our intention was to get halfway to Lyon for our first night so chose a campsite in Soulaines-Dhuys. We optimistically set off on the non-toll roads, but after several deviations for closed roads, we realised this was false economy, and joined the excellent motorway toll road system. While driving at speed here, we encountered a violent electrical storm with fork lightening all around us. Fortunately we had had an opportunity to pull off and put the hood up, before it struck (not literally!).It was a matter of minutes after the hood was up that the deluge started so we were very pleased that a service area appeared at that moment.
Lunch was at the market town of St-Omer, and after leaving the toll system at Reims, we stopped at Chalons-en-Champagne. We were now in the champagne area, and this town is quite delightful, but not as small and cutesy as our final destination, Croix Badeau. To discover the campsite was adjacent to a very lovely little town, was a bonus. But the surprises did not stop there. At the far end of the little village was the Venise Verte restaurant; what a fabulous find!