Farmhouse | 6 bedrooms | sleeps 12
Les Chardons is situated on the border between Charente and Dordogne in an area known as 'Happy Valley' by the locals. And it's easy to see why. The restored farmhouse with 17th Century origins is on the edge of a tiny hamlet called Barbenègre (Blackbeard!). It is very private with wonderful uninterrupted views across the Dronne valley from the rear of the houses.
The nearest large town is Chalais, some 10km away and has a supermarket. large Monday market, various restaurants, pharmacy, banks and a range of shops for most needs. Chalais also boasts a swimming pool with diving boards and tennis courts. St. Aulaye is 6km away and has a market on Saturday, a couple of restaurants, doctor, boulangerie and various other shops. St. Aulaye also has a beach on the river Dronne with water chutes and other recreational facilities. The beautiful and historically significant town of Aubeterre is some 12km away with its world famous rock hewn cathedral, bars, cafés, and a beach with canoes and rafts. Various types of musical evenings are held in the town square throughout summer. There is also a new golf course approximately 2km from Barbenègre
Within a few kilometers of Barbenègre there is canoeing (4km) and you can arrange pony riding at a local riding centre. Parcoul which is 7km away has a restaurant and large beached lake with water chutes, crazy golf, pedaloes, little train and other children's amusements. There are numerous local farms where you can sample such delights as; Pineau-Cognac, Duck Confit, Wood Oven baked Breads and of course Fois-Gras.
Slightly further afield - but easily accessed within half an hour is the huge lake of La Jemaye set in acres of pine forest and large enough for serious swimming, boating and picnics. Ribérac, also within easy reach, has one of the largest farmers' markets in France held on a Friday morning in the town's square.
Within an hour you can visit the great towns of St. Émilion (wine) and Cognac (brandy) and take advantage of some of the tours available.
Further afield still is the grand city of Bordeaux (1 hour) with all facilities and Poitiers (2 hours) with the extraordinary theme park of Futuroscope. You can venture further into the Dordogne and visit ancient towns like Sarlat le Canéda, the bastide town of Domme, the coastal hot-spot of Arcachon with it's dunes and Atlantic beaches, surfing and night life.
The property consists of two adjoining houses. The larger house has four bedrooms and three shower or bathrooms. The smaller, two bedrooms and two shower rooms. There is wheelchair access to the larger house. Free Broadband Internet access is also available. The houses are surrounded by private grounds of about two and a half acres, mostly set to grass with trees, shrubs and vines. The houses are perfect for larger parties, offering the opportunity for privacy and togetherness.
|Size||Sleeps up to 12, 6 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Local beach on river 4 km|
|Will consider||Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month), Short breaks (1-4 days)|
|Access||Car advised, Wheelchair users|
|Nearest Amenities||1 km|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Bergerac 50 km, Nearest railway: Angouleme for TGV 30 km|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages, Suitable for people with restricted mobility|
|Notes||No pets allowed, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Luxuries||Log fire, Internet access, DVD player, Staffed property|
|Pool||Private outdoor pool (unheated)|
|General||TV, Video player, CD player, Telephone, Satellite TV, Wi-Fi available|
|Standard||Kettle, Toaster, Iron|
|Utilities||Clothes dryer, Dishwasher, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Freezer, Washing machine|
|Rooms||6 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms of which 4 Family bathrooms and 1 En suites|
|Furniture||Single beds (4), Double beds (4), Cots (2), Dining seats for 18, Lounge seats for 10|
|Other||Linen provided, High chair|
|Outdoors||Private outdoor pool (unheated), Balcony or terrace, Private garden, BBQ, Bicycles available|
|Access||Parking, Wheelchair users|
|Further details indoors||
2 well equipped kitchens and 2 comfortable lounges
|Further details outdoors||
Large gardens suitable for games and repose
The Aquitaine/Dordogne region
The area is beautiful with vineyards, rivers and historic towns
St Émilion - If you’re a wine lover, this is a must. The town is very picturesque and you can visit wine warehouses and shops to buy your favourites. Or simply wander around the pretty restored town. The drive down (around 45 minutes) is nice too. If you get to St Emilion after 17:00 you will have the place to yourselves
Cognac -About 50mins drive. Here you can take tours of the brandy making firms, famous names such as Martel, Rémy Martin, Hennessey are all there. The cognac industry is facing hard times at the moment. (The world is turning to whisky, seemingly). The tours are interesting and you get a free drink (or 6) afterwards! Not expensive.
Bordeaux - The grand city of Bordeaux is roughly one hour away. It has everything to offer, with museums, shops, restaurants, parks etc. It’s easy to park there, but as a good starting point, you can park in the Esplanade des Quinconces that will deposit you in the middle of the city.
You will see around the local villages, signs for the ‘Circuit Roman’ this is a circuit of Romanesque churches, which includes Chenaud, St Aulaye and Aubeterre. One of the prettiest is at St Privat-des-Pres (off the road to Ribérac). One of the main pilgrim routes went through Aubeterre and in the church (up the hill out of the square) you will see crusader reliefs and other pilgrim buildings immediately surrounding it.
Chalais - Locally you can visit the chateau in Chalais. Supermarket, Monday market, Swimming Pool
Bourdeilles - A really nice trip is to go via Ribérac to Bourdeilles, where there is a fine castle and chateau, charmingly set by the river Dronne. The journey takes you along the banks of the river and you can drive along either bank. Beyond Bourdeilles is Brantome, which is equally beautiful with the river Dronne surrounding the town.
Villebois-Lavalette - On the D17, Saturday ancient covered market where you can eat oysters and drink a glass of wine at 10:00. Beautiful position and Chateau.
Aubeterre - The beautiful and historic town of Aubeterre is roughly 10kms away - straight from central casting - and has been nominated as one of the 100 most beautiful villages in France. Don’t miss the world famous rock hewn cathedral, much better than the one advertised in St Émilion. Various types of music evenings are held in the town square and cathedral throughout the summer. There are many restaurants in the square offering a diverse range of food for all tastes.
Saint Christophe de Double - There is a lake here with some sports available but best of all is the Cave Cooperative Vinicole. You can buy wine by the vrac (any old plastic container) or by the case direct from the producers. The local vinyards are at the eastern extreme of the Appelation Bordeaux region. The wines are young, fruity, full bodied and well worth the €3 (roughly) per bottle. They do red, white, rose and sparkling which can rival a good champagne. Well worth a visit. It is only open Tuesday and Friday 08h00 - 12h00 & 14h00 - 18h00 and on Saturday mornings 08h00 - 12h00. You can stock up here for taking home - much better value than anything at the ports. Follow the signs fro St. Christophe and then leave the small town centre towards the lake and keep going. The Cooperative is a large dull cream building on your left - go in - it's an experience and they may just be bottling at the same time. they take all forms of payment of course. About 30 mins drive.
Ribérac - Great market on Friday mornings. Musical evenings in the summer. Busy.