There’s genuinely so much to see and do in the south west of France, Gironde and Aquitaine. Our farmhouse provides a superb location to take it all in, here’s a flavour of what there is to see and do….
The undulating landscape of the Lot et Garonne has been likened to that of Tuscany. A rich architectural heritage that reflects its eventful history – castles, Romanesque churches, bastide towns and picturesque villages are everywhere that has much to offer lovers of culture and the countryside.
We are within easy reach of the 12th-14th century Bastide towns of Eymet, Duras, Miramont de Guyenne and slightly further afield the acknowledged Monpazier. Brantome (visit the 9th Century Benedictine Abbey), Perigueux, Bordeaux (capital of Aquitaine), St Emilion are places you will remember and savour, well worth building into your itinerary.
Lovely walks on the doorstep and we are close to lakes with great facilities (canoes, beaches, swimming, pedalos) just over an hour from the coast and five minutes from bars, restaurants, bastide fortified villages, castles and caves.
The area is rich in human history from Cro-Magnon man in the Dordogne Valley to huge castles used during the hundred year’s war. Lascaux II offers a chance to see some of the best early cave paintings whilst Beynac et Cazenac, Sarlat, Domme and Castelnaud have huge medieval connections and are very picturesque.
We are just half an hour from Bergerac which is set on the banks of the Dordogne. During the Hundred Years’ War Bergerac was held alternately by the French and English. There are over three hundred thousand acres of vineyards in the area including the famous Monbazillac – a sweet wine to rival Sauterne.
A favourite for everyone is Arcachon Basin, a huge triangle more than 60 miles long and is almost completely enclosed. The Basin is an important sanctuary for many birds and has a number of small oyster farms. The soft sand stretching for miles make it a must for summer visitors, not forgetting nearby Dune du Plya, Europe’s highest sand dune, 2 miles long, 550ft wide and 384 ft high from the top of the dune there are superb views of the Atlantic
Ocean - well worth a visit.
The narrow streets and courtyards of Sarlat have undergone extensive restoration and have been returned to their original splendour. Tie in your visit with the town’s truffle and foire gras fairs which draw in the visitors.
Food & Wine
Bordeaux is regarded as the wine capital of the world and the vineyards of Aquitaine are endless and can be enjoyed by wine enthusiasts of all levels. Bordeaux is also a great city to explore and has been transformed in recent years. It is a mix of grand boulevards and noble, Neo-Classical squares. You can take a train from Marmande straight to Bordeaux (approximately 40 mins) if you prefer to leave the car behind.
Saint-Emilion is a delight and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The town’s architecture is stunning and it’s a joy to spend the day walking through the town and catching the fresh warm, smell of the macaroons – it would be rude to leave without trying one!
The Lot et Garonne, Dordogne and Gironde are famous for their gastronomy and local dishes include oysters, duck, foire gras and the infamous truffle. Prunes d’Agen (a type of plum) are the most famous of all the fruits and vegetables grown on the fertile banks of the Garonne and Lot. Local wines are well renowned from summery roses to thick fruity reds and the unusual sweet Monbazillac – a good rival to Sauterne.
There are plenty of good local restaurants in the area, you’ll be surprised at how little you can pay for great local food and wine – we also have our share of more expensive restaurants ideal for celebrating a special occasion or just a holiday treat. Full details can be found in the gite welcome packs.
For families, couples and singles there’s so much to see and do and the region caters for everyone’s taste – canoeing, kayaking, horse riding, aqua parks, vineyards, local markets, castles, museums and festivals. It’s worth mentioning that children are welcome in all restaurants.
It’s impossible not to fall in love with this beautiful part of France – that’s why we made it our home.
We would be happy to help you plan your time and excursions by prior arrangement, or if you prefer to spend your days by the pool that’s fine with us too!
Food & Wine
The region enjoys over 2,000 hours of sunshine a year; the sunniest days are concentrated in the summer months where the temperatures can rise to 30c. The region has relatively mild winters and a lovely long springtime.