6 route de la fontaine, L'Epinoux
We are situated in a peaceful hamlet in the North Eastern corner of the Charente Maritime. The region is known as the “western Mediterranean” and is one of the best kept secrets in France. Fields of sunflowers, vineyards and cereal crops make this a truly picturesque and photogenic area. Enjoying France’s second highest number of sunshine hours after the Côte D’Azur, the long hot summers and very mild winters are ideal for the production of fine grapes used to make wonderful wines and Cognac.
The local village of Néré is just a few minutes by car and can cater for most of your day to day needs. There is a traditional butcher, a good boulangerie, a small supermarket, chemist, hairdresser and bank. Bistro St Pierre will serve you with a refreshing drink or a delicious meal.
There are many open air markets, larger shops, restaurants and historic churches in local towns and small villages, many of which are just a short drive away.
Aulnay-de-Saintonge is a charming country town just a fifteen minute drive up the road, its immaculate town square hosts a weekly market. There is a full range of boutiques, bars, chemists and an Intermarché supermarket. The medieval church of Saint-Pierre d'Aulnay is a World Heritage monument on the pilgrimage route to Sainte-Jaques de Compostelle. The church is thought to have been built in 1120-1140.
The donkey sanctuary at Dampierre sur Boutonne is an exciting attraction for the younger ones, as is Le Zoo de la Palmyre with orangutans, lions, tigers, meerkats, gorillas and many other fantastic animals to see.
The area known as Venise Verte is nearby, here you can rent a small boat, bicycles or canoes (with or without a guide) and enjoy the maze of ancient canals and truly get away into a world of your own.
The coast is around an hour’s drive, the long Atlantic beaches are perfect for sunbathing, building sand castles, sailing, surfing and simply relaxing soaking up the atmosphere. Traditional “carrelets” – fishing nets mounted on wooden gangplanks on stilts - litter the coast, as do mussel and oyster farms and lighthouses. Fabulous seaside walks with glorious views are within easy reach.
Other towns in the region include: Chef Boutonne, Cognac, Saintes, Royan, St Jean D’Angely, La Rochelle, St Martin de Ré, Rochefort and Poitiers.
This hidden gem of a region will captivate you. You will never be short of something to do. Once discovered the area is difficult to leave and is somewhere to which you will return year after year.