|Bumblebee cottage||Self Catering||Flexible||4||7||2||Z-bed if required for 1 extra|
Bumblebee Cottage has been fully renovated to a high standard and offers a traditional taste of France with all its furnishings but also offers extreme coziness and practicality with all mod cons. It has a well equipped kitchen, two large shower rooms, a spacious lounge/dining room and a separate sitting room with a good selection of books – if you’re in the middle of one at the end of your stay please take it with you, a good book should be read to the end.
The tv has Freesat with most of the UK tv programmes available and a dvd player with a selection of dvd's, and there’s another tv/dvd in the sitting room. There's broadband available, it's slow and the bandwidth is limited (so please don’t download movies) as we're too far from the telephone exchange to have cable.
The stone-built cottage was once a farmhouse and is attached to its barn, which is no longer in use, and gives it the air of a traditional French longère with its water pump in front – it works but we wouldn’t recommend drinking the water!
Situated at the end of a lane that only serves two other properties it is both private and quiet, and the garden, about three quarters of an acre, has lots of room for the children to run around in or play ball games. There are swings in the garden, an above ground pool and swing ball. We also have a football net if you fancy a game of football.
There are apple and pear trees and a ferocious bramble patch down at the bottom corner (help yourself if they are ripe).
Really this cottage is perfect for relaxation and chilling out, whether sitting under the awning on the decked bbq area or relaxing in the evening with a glass of wine watching the swallows darting about, and if you are lucky, deer have been spotted at the bottom of the garden We suspect there’s a fox or two about too, we're sure that we spotted a badger once, and we’re fairly certain that there are a couple of bats living in the barn. If it’s too cool to sit outside, the log fire is very cozy!
The tiny village of Saint Clement is only a couple of minutes drive away (we've never actually seen anyone there!) and the small market town of Mortain is just five minutes away where there are couple of bars, cafes, supermarkets and shops. In addition just two minutes down the road is a great Go-cart Track which is popular for both children and adults.
The Abbaye Hotel in nearby Le Neufbourg is run by an English couple and combines French and English cuisine, and does excellent Sunday lunches - advance booking is advisable.
The area wasn’t so peaceful in 1944, there was a major battle on the hill above Mortain and the view from the hilltop (La Petite Chapelle) is huge, fading into the misty distance. There’s a pleasant walk and picnic area there.
German campaign maps show SS Panzers advancing from Ger (about 12 km away) down the lane to the cottage and through the garden, there's a tank sized gap in the bocage in the bottom corner behind the bramble patch.
Cyclists and walkers are well catered for two km from the cottage is a disused railway line (ample parking there), which is now a cycleway and runs for miles.
Fully equipped kitchen, washing machine, dishwasher, microwave etc. gas hob/electric oven, fridge/freezer.
Typically French lounge/dining room.
Large sitting room with log fire (all rooms also have electric heaters) comfortably furnished with two sofas, a large armchair and footstool, very cosy in front of the fire!
The tv has Freesat and there's a dvd player and a selection of dvds.
Dining table is also here.
Two double bedrooms and one single upstairs, one double on the ground floor, the z-bed is kept in the downstairs bedroom.
Large spa shower, handbasin and wc in both upstairs and downstairs bathrooms, towels provided.
Log fire (and a good supply of logs in the log pile) in the sitting room and all rooms have electric radiators. We have found that even in winter, after 24 hours the electric heating is hardly needed.
Tv, Freesat, dvd player, broadband.
Bistro table and chairs at the front door, a permanent bbq on the decked area which has a large table and benches with a sunshade.
Adjacent are swings and a large above ground pool (new for 2016) with another decked area.
There is a swingball and a goal net - lots of space for a kick-about, but please bring your own ball, the foxes keep stealing ours and leaving them chewed.
Parking on the gravelled area in front of the cottage.
The cottage is at the end of a lane 250m from the main (only just!) road and there are only two other neighbours.
The stairs may present a difficulty for those with impaired mobility, however the downstairs bathroom and bedroom eases this problem.
The garden is ideal for children, lots of space to run around in, older ones could even camp out (there's a small tent hanging in the downstairs bathroom), and being at the end of the lane there is no passing traffic.
The sitting room has a tv/dvd player and accepts input from games machines and laptops, there are some kids games (connect 4, Frustration etc) and a selection of books ideal for a rainy day when no-one wants to go out.
I'm a retired design engineer, still living in England. My wife and I decided some years ago to buy a property in France to renovate, made a few trips over and then circumstances prevented us from going ahead with the idea. In 2011 we decided to give it another go without the renovation, and bought Bumblebee.
|Year property purchased||2011|
|Why this location?||When we came over house hunting in 2011 we wanted to be in Normandy (everyone goes to Brittany) and Swiss Normandy is more interesting than the Normandy plains, this was the first property we looked at and it became the yardstick for all of the others. Basically we fell in love with it, it's secluded, at the end of it's own lane and surrounded by farmland, yet 10 minutes from the local town and 5 minutes from two supermarkets. It's also not too far from the D-Day beaches and most of the other major WW2 battle fields, the whole area is steeped in medieval history|
|Unique benefits of property||The seclusion, peace and quiet, and the large garden for children to play in. The decked area around the pool allows adults to relax while children are in the pool or garden. On rainy days the sitting room has a tv/dvd player so that the children can have their own space, and the downstairs bedroom and bathroom are a boon for anyone with mobility difficulties. We have a manager living local to the cottage who looks after the housekeeping and is available in the case of emergencies.|
About 2 hours drive, but if you are into WW2 history, worth the trip north just to see the bunkers and Mulberry remains. The Pegasus Bridge museum is fairly good, and the actual bridge is in the museum grounds.
St Mere-Eglish has an excellent Airborne Forces Museum (as an ex-paratrooper I can vouch for the accuracy of their DC3 section), there is a dummy of the parachutist caught on the church tower recalling the actual event and each year a memorial meet of ex-US forces as the town still has very strong links.
The Abbey Hotel in La Neufbourg (5 minutes drive) is run by an English couple but is very French (except for Sunday lunch!) and the food is excellent.
Bar/Tabacs in Mortain all do plat de jour most days.
Village Enchante de Bellefontaine - has been well recomended by guests Jurques zoo, again, well recomended by guests
Most of the small towns in the area are market towns, Mortain, Sourdeval and Vire are no exception, check on-line for market days as they may change. Excellent market at St Hillaire du Harcouet on Thursday
Explore the churches while you are there, their massive architecture was about all that survived when the towns were flattened in July and August 1944
About 45 minutes drive (you can see the Mont from Le Petit Chapelle in Mortain), get there early, park in one of the well organised car parks and take the shuttle bus to this unique monastery and spend a day wandering around. Absolutely facinating.
Ride a cycle/rail car on the old railway tracks, at Conde sur Vire (about 30km away). Absolute peace and tranquility, a novelty for the children and not much in the way of hills!
A lovely quiet location. Plenty of room for our family of five. Large garden and the pool was great. Very well equipped kitchen. A bit of a drive to get to touristy places, but Mont St Michel reachable in 50 minutes. Would highly recommend and would like to think we'll return. Owner was easily reached by email and responded quickly to questions before arrival.
I thoroughly enjoyed my stay at bumblebee cottage with my family. The cottage is well equipped, clean and spacious. The garden, BBQ area and pool are excellent for all guests, my children are all confident in the water and it was great to relax on the sun loungers while they swam. The local area is beautiful, very rural and quiet. We had no trouble getting everything we needed in Mortain, fro groceries to petrol. We also visited the market in Sourdeval, which was very pleasant. There are plenty of great walks, particularly to the waterfalls in Mortain and around the nearby la fosse Arthour.
the most relaxing place we have ever stayed in , the gites interior is of a high standard and very homely the kitchen has all the equipment you will need. the garden is a very large area perfect for the kids we even toke a drone and flew it around the garden. excellent swimming pool and decking area.
Tony was brilliant and very helpful throughout the whole process, it was a pleasure. the location is ideal, secluded but only a short drive to mortain and local shops. we visited a lot of places which are all within a hours drive, but it never feels a chore driving in beautiful country side and coastal roads
we highly recommend bumblebee cottage perfect gite, perfect location and perfect owner in tony