The View From Your Window Contest: Winner #158


A reader writes:

I’m getting a strong feeling of “Germany” looking at this photo. That blue road sign with an arrow closely resembles examples of German road signs I found online. I suppose it could be France or Estonia, but the architecture keeps me leaning towards Germany – as does the graffiti in the lower-right corner of the frame. I have no idea where in Germany, though, so I’m going to guess somewhere outside Hanover.


My sister had surgery in the Stanford University hospital ten years ago and when I looked at this week’s contest the red tile roofs and adobe colored buildings yelled out to me that this must be somewhere on the Stanford campus. Maybe student housing – lots of small buildings without too many cars. If I wasn’t six hours away I might even go drive around and try to find the exact location, but I’ll leave Google street view for someone who likes computer time more than I do and go back out to my garden.


I’m just shooting in the dark, but the architecture seems prosperously Eastern European, as does the signage. Lubljana, Slovenia?


First off, I was on vacation the first time you had a Luxembourg location, in Differdange (or was it Dudelange?), the famous one that nobody was even close to guessing. Since I had driven down the very street where that picture was taken just a day before leaving on that vacation, it was a bit agonizing to find out about missing the contest that week.

Analysis this week: First, Luxembourg is a tricky location because there is no Google street view, for whatever reason. But the geography and the lush, almost temperate-rain-forest vegetation makes this clearly in the Ardennes region. The EU standard street signs are a somewhat helpful confirmation. The architecture, being a mix of Belgian and French styles, both modern (20th century) and traditional, points strongly to southern Luxembourg. The lack of dominating large 20th century apartment blocks rule out northern Lux, which was heavily rebuilt after WWII, and neighboring areas of France and Belgium, where there are enough large public housing projects that you would not get this scene of predominantly small houses in the traditional red-tile roof style. Also, the southern towns in Lux have working-class neighborhoods like this, with relatively few slate roofs, just seen here on public buildings and those, like the French-style house on the right, with a bit of pretension to them.

There are a lot of American students at the University of Miami campus at Differdange, and I suspect this photo comes from one of them. My guess is of Rodange, looking south toward the hill to Titelberg, a Gallo-Roman site built on a bronze age settlement dating to 2000 BC.


I’m guessing Bucharest, Romania. I have no idea why, the photo sort of screams Eastern European. It could by Riga as well, who knows.  There’s this time sinkhole called “The View from Your Window” and I got to finish my financial household analysis and don’t have time to root round Google Earth. I’m going to be very impressed if this is gotten by someone who has NEVER, EVER visited this area, wherever the hell it is.

Another gets close:

Based on street signs and the cars’ license plates, I think we’re in France. I couldn’t detect other clues (no May fest brochure visible this time), so I have to make a determination on general grounds. The hills and buildings remind me of the Ardennes region. I wouldn’t be surprised if a fortress or castle was lurking just outside the picture. Sedan being one of the major towns in the area, so that’s my guess.

Below is the only reader to nail the right city:

Man, Dish fans sure do find some pretty places to visit. At first I though that this week’s view was in Eastern Europe based on those odd red roofs, so I spent several hours wandering through Transylvania. But the more I looked, the more things started to nag me, like the turreted windows and the color of the buildings’ walls, not to mention the flashes from the opening scene in “Beauty and the Beast” that kept rolling around at the back of my brain. Fast forward 24 hours, and I indeed found myself in a not-so-poor provincial town:

VFYW Sarlat Bird's Eye Marked - Copy

This week’s view comes from picturesque Sarlat-la-Caneda in the Perigord region of southwest France near the famous Lascaux caves. The photo was taken from a bed and breakfast called “Les Trois Jardins” located on the Impasse des Clarisses and looks due west over the southern part of town. For the sake of pseudo-preciseness I’ll guess that it was taken from the Monet bedroom on the second floor, though it might also be the Picasso loft above:

VFYW Salat Actual Window 3 Marked - Copy

Amusingly, the medieval heart of Sarlat is just out of sight on the right. Were it visible, this would have been a much quicker contest because it’s similar to Mirepoix, a town that was featured in VFYW #136. Attached are pictures of the actual window, a bird’s eye view, and a shot of the ancient architecture in the town’s center:

Sarlat Town Center - Copy

More details on the town from Wikipedia:

Sarlat is one of the most attractive and alluring towns in southwestern France. It’s a medieval town that developed around a large Benedictine abbey of Carolingian origin. The medieval Sarlat Cathedral is dedicated to Saint Sacerdos. Because modern history has largely passed it by, Sarlat has remained preserved and one of the towns most representative of 14th century France. It owes its current status on France’s Tentative List for future nomination as a UNESCO World Heritage site to the enthusiasm of writer, resistance fighter and politician André Malraux, who, as Minister of Culture (1960–1969), restored the town and many other sites of historic significance throughout France. The centre of the old town consists of impeccably restored stone buildings and is largely car-free.

However, that reader has already won a contest before (and is most likely our all-time best player), so we have to go with proximity this week. The closest town to Sarlat-la-Caneda guessed by a reader is Beynac:

This was even tougher than last week.  I quickly settled on some town in France, but which one?? It probably isn’t Beynac, but there were a number of buildings with similar architecture there that I suspect is somewhere in the western interior of France like the Aquitaine region.  If anyone gets this I’ll be very impressed.

But that reader is also a previous winner, so we have to go with the second closest city:

Beziers, France? In honor of the curves.

Short and sweet, enough for a win. The submitter writes:

I’m thrilled to see my picture as the View From Your Window contest.  So, a little bit about this.  It was taken from the Monet room on the first (US second) floor of Les Trois Jardins, an inn run by a British couple in Sarlat-la-Caneda, in the Dordogne region of France.  You can’t see the gardens that surround the house – it’s slightly set off from the center, though quite close.  My room looked west, immediately over the rue JP Delpeyrat.  The medieval city is to the north.   The avenue du Gal Leclerc, the main street northbound one street over to the west, is under construction, and I’m not sure how much that’s affected the parking area behind.  A few hours later, and there would not have been a parking space in sight, as the crowds descended on Sarlat’s impressive Saturday market, filled with fois gras, mushrooms, local cheeses and nuts, (and local foods more generally) as well as arts and crafts; there’s also the usual stuff – household, clothing, bags: anything you might want.

I can’t wait to see what people make of this, but I wouldn’t ever get close!