Aubeterre sur Dronne
Aubeterre-sur-Dronne is a commune, situated just 7 km from La Petite Maison Au Coin, in the Charente department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of south-western France. It has been officially listed as “One of the most beautiful villages in France,” since 1993. A Saturday market, up market shops and eateries attract many visitors as does the amazing, safe river bathing beaches there with cafe, play area and canoing.
St Aulaye is an attractive village not far from La Petite Maison au Coin in the north of the Dordogne department. Again, there is a safe area of the river with lovely clean beach for bathing. On Saturday morning you will find the market.
Riberac, Dordogne – a pretty town with a lively weekly market, reputed to be the largest in the Perigord! Riberac is in the north of the Dordogne to the north of Mussidan. This is a quieter part of the Dordogne department but not far from the busy summer crowds to the south. You will find a well stocked tourist information office, many restaurants and bars.
To the east of our holiday gite is another pretty village – Bordeilles and has an impressive chateau at its centre. Throughout the Summer and early Autumn you will find many brocantes and fetes.
Grand Etang de la Jamaye
Spectacular setting and a must see. Several lakes form this area of outstanding beauty with beautiful safe bathing beaches at various points. During the Summer it is manned by life guards. There is a lovely restaurant, bars and a shop with many walks and protected habitats for many species of wildlife.
Chateau Bourdeilles and Village
Pretty Bordeilles is about 35 minutes away from our Gite, which sits on the edge of the river Dronne and boasts a chateau, a moulin (mill), a medieval centre and a panoramic viewpoint.
Its main feature is its chateau which is actually two castles. There is a fortress dating back to the 13th and 14th century and which has defensive walls and an octaganol donjon 35 meters tall. Within the walls there is also a second chateau built in the Renaissance style during the 16th century.
Every Sunday morning it is market day in Bourdeilles at the Place de la Halle.On the edge of the village there are a number of shelters in the rocky cliffs overhanging the road which leads out to Brântome. These are called the Fourneau du Diable.
10 minutes further on from Bordeilles is the fabulous town of Brantome, an attractive town near the northern edge of the Dordogne department, sometimes known as the Venice of the Dordogne (slight exaggeration strictly speaking) – the town has a nice mix of medieval and renaissance architecture to admire. The town is classed as one of ‘les Plux Beaux Detours’ in France.
The church belfry in Brantome was built in the 11th century and is the oldest to be found in France, it stands on a rocky outcrop at the bottom of a cliff.
The Church of Saint Pierre is also worth admiring, with certain parts dating back to the 15th century (especially part of the cloisters) as is the bridge that crosses the river, and provides a good vantage point to admire the town.
Lots of cafes, bars, bistros and restaurants line the narrow winding streets as well as the riverside.
The ‘capital’ of the Dordogne department is set towards the north of the region. Many miles from the Dordogne River, it is actually found on the Isle River.
The town has been in existence since neolithic times, and later became an important Roman centre. The town suffered a great deal in the Middle Ages through the Hundred Years War and other conflicts in the region, then had a ‘rebirth’ – and much construction in the town dates from this time – in the 16th century. From the 18th century onwards, Perigueux continues to be an important centre for the region.
There is a daily market for fresh fruit and vegetables on Place du Coderec with its 19th century covered market. Also on the square is the Maison Lapeyre with an overhanging turret and a charming colombage (half-timbered) house.
Next is Rue Limogeanne which for me is the highlight of Perigueux; a lovely street full of interesting buildings with inner courtyards, ornate carvings around windows or doors and full of atmosphere.
Doubling back from here, head for the Place du Marche au bois with its Baron Hausmann style architecture and then go to the Place de la Vertu which is one of the prettiest squares in Perigueux.
And of course is the shopping! Oh, and the food and the wine …!
St Emilion Vineyards
While there are a few large estates in the appellation, the average vineyard is about 7 hectares in size. The largest vineyards in St. Emilion belongs to Chateau Laroque and Chateau Fombrauge, which are close to 61 hectares each. The title for the smallest classified growth in St. Emilion belongs to Clos St. Martin, which is only a diminutive 1.3 hectares.
In total, close to 2.4 million cases of wine are produced in Saint Emilion each year! This is divided into both St. Emilion appellations. 1,500,000 cases of wine come from St. Emilion Grand Cru vineyards each year.
900,000 cases of wine are produced from Saint Emilion non classified vineyards every vintage. A trip to one of the many wine producers can be arranged for you upon request!
… and so, so much more! We would be happy to help with any excursions and we provide lots of information in our guest handbook as well as a huge range of literature in the gite!