The Marais du Cotentin is a national park teaming with bird life including storks. To the north (20 mins) are the D-day landing beaches of Utah and Omaha. This year is is the 75th anniversary of Operation Overlord and the property is an ideal base from which to enjoy the commemorations that will include a spectacular mass parachute drop.The nearest beach is less than a 20 min drive and we are conveniently located for visiting the Calvados coast and the other D Day beaches of Sword, Juno and Gold as well as all the memorials, cemeteries and museums. The nearby town of Carentan was central to the extraordinary military operation as featured in Spielberg's acclaimed 'Band of Brothers' and the Manoir de Donville, site of the Battle of Bloody Gulch is open to the public.
Set in an idyllic, rural location, the farmhouse has its own drive, extensive gardens and courtyards. There is parking for 4 cars. Overall, the property with surrounding fields, extends to approx. 2 acres.
Downstairs the property has a modern kitchen (dishwasher, fridge, electric oven with gas hob, microwave), wi-fi, separate wc and bathroom with washing machine & tumble dryer, massive beamed lounge decorated with murals and large wood burning stove plus Freesat tv. Upstairs, there is a master bedroom with en suite shower/toilet plus 2 further bedrooms (double and twin) with a family bathroom. There are electric radiators throughout. Well behaved pets are welcome with prior notice. Travelcot and highchair available. An outhouse contains a further fridge and small freezer, bbq and garden furniture as well as beach toys, body-boards etc that are free to borrow.
The landscape is ideal cycling country with many, many clubs using the roads. In fact, the first 2 stages of the Tour de France 2016 were routed to pass within 15 minutes of our location. The property has safe storage for cycles should guests decide to use it as a touring base.
The Cotentin coastline on the other side of the peninsula, also a 20 min drive, has miles and miles of unspoilt sands and protected dunes, ideal for body-boarding (there are boards at the house to borrow) and swimming, rock-pooling and walking. Ferries to Jersey go from Carteret and just up the coast there are stunning bays and coves, lighthouses and rugged paths to explore. In the opposite direction, Mont St Michel and St Malo are an easy drive.
Large modern fitted kitchen with basic dishwasher, electric oven with gas hob, fridge, microwave, wi-fi. Washing machine & dryer located in adjacent bathroom.
Massive lounge/dining room with wood burning stove. English Freesat tv. Very big sofa and 4 armchairs as well as extra dining table and chairs. French windows. Books, art, dvds.
Recent guests proclaimed the lounge to be "magnificent."
Three good sized rooms. One double en suite, 1 double and 1 twin. All south facing.
Two shower rooms (1 en suite) upstairs, 1 bathroom downstairs with separate wc.
Electric heaters and large wood burning stove in sitting room.
Freesat tv + French terrestrial. Dvd player. Books, games and films to borrow. Wi-fi.
Substantial safe and secluded gardens in sun and shade with stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Bbq and garden furniture available.
Parking for 4 cars on secluded drive.
Great for families and friends.
Well behaved dogs welcome with prior notice.
Excellent for bird watching, walking, cycling and close proximity to all the landing beaches and museums.
There are an assortment of bicycles available to borrow as well as beach equipment (bodyboards etc) by arrangement.
The local village is easily accessible by foot or bike with a little shop and bar, open 6 days a week, opposite a handsome Norman church.
We are a creative family involved in the arts and booktrade and the house reflects our interests
|Year property purchased||1999|
|Why this location?||The Manche region is a jewel - green yet coastal, historic, with a fantastic food heritage. It is the ideal gateway through which to explore Normandy and Brittany.|
|Unique benefits of property||The house is very spacious and has been lovingly arranged. With wonderful, safe grounds, it is surrounded by deep countryside in a conservation area but with incredibly easy access to the seaside. It is perfect cycling country - in 2016, 2 stages of the Tour de France had routes practically criss-crossing the doorstep|
Many of the local beaches are within 20 minutes of the property, others an easy drive. The inquisitive traveller venturing further up the Cherbourg peninsula will find handsome lighthouses, dramatic views, coves such as the Baie de Ecalgrain, tiny cliff villages, stone harbours and islands such as Tatihou and the beautiful Ile Chaussey.
On the Val de Saire, discover the historic D-day beach and museum at Utah 20 minutes away. The property is also very conveniently located for visiting the Pointe d'Hoc and Omaha beach as well as the memorials, cemeteries and museums further along the Calvados coastline. The market town of Carentan is nearby as is the Manoir de Donville, site of the Battle of Bloody Gulch as portrayed in Spielberg's acclaimed 'Band of Brothers.'
The historic abbey at Lessay is 10 minutes away and holds regular classical music recitals, while the imposing hilltop cathedral at Coutances, 20 minutes by road, is both fascinating and sublime.
A visit to the chateau at Pirou is a fascinating afternoon out for the whole family, the ancient port of Granville is easily accessible and a day trip to the stunning, iconic Mont St Michel is highly recommended.
The tapestry at Bayeux is much less than an hour's drive from Gorges.
There is perfect, safe terrain all around Gorges for cycling and walking as well as bird-watching paradise in the centre of the Marais du Contentin. The marshland which constitutes the core of the Cherbourg peninsula (storks, herons, buzzards, egrets etc). "We walked from Chapel St Anne, saw the storks with their young, and marsh harriers". There is a visitor's centre, the Maison du Parc, full of information on things to do.
The house is tucked away along a country lane and is reached via its own drive. Located right bang in the middle of one of Northern France's great natural parks, the Marais du Contentin is full of wildlife and nature trails and is 20 minutes from both the north and west coasts.
The area is great for cycling and walking on safe nature trails either inland or on the coast. The west coast offers varied watersports during the summer. Bird watchers will enjoy one of France's great natural marsh habitats.
"How can you bear to be away from the house for so long?". "Super house in beautiful location". "The whole place has such a healing and peaceful ambiance". "Secluded spot ... enjoyed the marshes, the countryside and the sea".
The area behind the western coastline is famous for its unique system of vegetable cultivation in the dunes. Indeed, the annual Fete de la Carotte is a celebration of this bountiful heritage and evidence of the local pride in their produce is visible everywhere from mosiacs on roundabouts to the shape of the street lamps. The weekly markets at various towns on differing days also reflects the quality and diversity of locally produced food, from salads to fruit, honey and fish. This coast is also home to extensive oyster beds and farmed moules which are clean and delicious. Not far inland, the Reo dairy is open for the public to see how Camembert is made. The region is also renowned for its creme fraiche and excellent butter, as well as its cured hams and cider and other apple based tipples. There are also wonderful patisseries and charcuteries in Periers, Carentan and Lessay. Each of these towns are also well-served by supermarkets. For stylish shopping, Coutances is very rewarding. Meanwhile, Bayeux discreetly hosts top designers on its cobbled streets and Caen has several really smart department stores as well as high street chains.
Les Forges in Saintenay 10 minutes from the house offers a wholesome 'prix fixe' daily.
Restaurant de la Mer in Pirou is one of the finest fish establishments in Manche. The town also features an excellent pizzeria and brasserie together with numerous bars. Similarly there are several different kinds of restaurants in Carentan ranging from a pizzeria on the small harbour through to one or 2 really smart places in the centre of town, creperies in Perier and Portbail, brasserie lunches opposite the cathedral in Coutances.
There are tennis courts in Gorges for hire, a swimming pool in Carentan and go-karting at Lessay. Motorcross meetings are held annually in nearby fields as well as equestrian weekends at Carentan and at Auvers, just across the marais. The kite surfing off the West coast is spectacular. The modern football stadium at Caen regularly hosts top French and European teams with tickets easily obtained at designated PMU bars. The local lanes are safe for jogging and cycling.
On the West coast of Contentin there are spectacular wild beach walks and safe bathing for all the family at Creances, a maritime (tidal) swimming pool at Pirou Plage, rock-pools, sand yachts at St Germain sur Ay, kite surfing, horse-riding at Hatainville, soft sand dunes and camping at Lindberg Plage. The old harbour at Portbail is very picturesque with a terrific pleasure beach hidden beyond the saltwater flats.
Twenty minutes north, the twin towns of Barneville-Carteret form a cosmopolitan gateway to the channel islands with ferry boats leaving daily.