Gite in Ruffec walk to restaurants/shops/bars

Ruffec, Charente, Poitou Charentes Reference: PC003815 Advertiser since: 8 July 2014
Property Board Arrival Bedrooms Sleeps Bathrooms
The French Cottages - Cottage 3 Self Catering Flexible 2 4 1

About this property

Chateau cottage, pool, stroll to Ruffec shops/bars. This cottage/gite is in a town setting.

The French Cottages and Charmante gite are one of four top quality holiday rental cottages. These self catering cottages in France are situated within a well-located gated complex. While in a peaceful setting, the market town of Ruffec is just a 3 minute stroll for your morning baguette or croissants available at a choice of bakeries or coffee at several outside cafes. There are lovely restaurants, bars, as well as supermarkets, shops, banks all within a few minutes, plus a cinema with French and English films, a fresh Atlantic seafood market, a Saturday and Wednesday Farmers Market. If you prefer swimming, canoeing or fishing the river Charente while staying at these holiday rental cottages simply enjoy a 5 minute cycle or drive ! Bring your own bike or hire nearby.

Our self catering cottages in France offer house hunters LAST MINUTE DEALS. The French cottages can easily be combined with another private cottage and accommodate up to 9 guests - perfect for larger family or group of friends ! This would provide private, separate entry top quality accommodation.

All our holiday rental cottages offer complimentary welcome hampers with a bottle of wine plus a handy essentials starter pack.

Charmante holiday cottage has on site car parking, free Wi-Fi, English tv and a dvd library for all ages. Our self catering cottages in France are charming, comfortable and well equipped with everything you need for an enjoyable self catering holiday stay. These rental cottages were originally used as Chateau cottages and apartments. The French Cottages are a quality rental that is ideal to sample life the relaxed French way !  Enjoy the new solar shower, the plunge pool, perfect for a swim ! Have fun with the activities for children / teenagers and a bigger boules, petanque area.
La Charmante, is one of five holiday rental cottages and has been sympathetically restored to a high standard to provide our guests with modern bijou comfort within a historical property. This self catering holiday cottage is within a larger property, set in 4 acres of natural private park and a smaller walled garden with fruit trees, flowers, plants and some vines.

This unique location, tranquil setting is amazing for relaxing outside in any one of the many seating areas and patios or sitting at the original historical Chateau Lavoir. Don’t be surprised to see the resident ducks wandering about in the peaceful garden or on the patios while you relax or dine al fresco in any of our shaded or sunny seating areas.

Within the extensive grounds there are a number of covered and open dining areas and garden patios, ideal for sundowners and romantic candle lit Charente al fresco dining. Any time of the day or evening is perfect for enjoying a barbecue at the riverside barbecue area, while the ducks swim by slowly and entertain. If you prefer, have a daytime picnic in the forest after a game of boules, the choice is yours ! At the French Cottages the outdoors can be enjoyed for most of the year in this charming part of the Charente. 

The covered summer kitchen at the French cottages is popular for eating breakfast, preparing picnics or aperitifs or using any of the different cooking choices available. The covered dining area with its exposed stone walls can be enjoyed day or night. There is seating at a long table for up to 14 people with lovely vine and garden views. Come relax at our French holiday rental cottages and enjoy this beautiful property and its idyllic surroundings, even if you have to use the free wi-fi !

At these self catering cottages in France we have washing machines to use during your stay. The French cottages offer use of the utility room with an iron, ironing board, hangers, pegs, washing powders etc. These holiday rental cottages have a portable clothes airer and there are also outside washing lines.

A Complimentary Welcome Hamper and a bottle of wine are included with your stay at the French cottages. Our guests sometimes arrive late at our holiday rental cottages, so we also provide a complimentary Essentials Starter Pack to get your holiday going. 

We are a family run business at the French cottages and strive to make our properties high quality holiday rental cottages. There is always someone helpful on site to make your home-from-home stay an enjoyable one at our French holiday cottages.

Reservations at the French cottages require a completed booking form together with a 25% non-refundable deposit. The balance of 75% is due 8 weeks prior to arrival. A refundable security damage deposit of £250 to cover breakages is due and returned after satisfactory inspection. Prices payable in £ or Euro equivalent.  There is an end of stay deep cleaning charge. We offer a 10% discount off a 2nd week booked, subject to availability. Prices quoted are per week, Saturday to Saturday, some flexibility may be possible, just ask. These self catering cottages in France offer House hunting holidays and short term rentals at a discount rate - please let us know your requirements.



Kitchen and dining

The new kitchen has a glass cooking hob, built-in oven, extractor fan and dishwasher. Plently of quality crockery, dishes, cutlery, cookware, utensils, kettle, juicer, coffee-machine and everything you need for a wonderful self catering stay.

The kitchen leads to the dining area where you will find a table with 4 chairs plus a storage and display unit.

Living rooms

The living room is a good size and has a comfy 3 seater sofa and arm chairs next to a cosy fireplace.


Bedroom 1 has a comfortable, quality French double bed, pedestal, a beautiful original French chest of drawers and a hanging cupboard.

The second bedroom has 2 quality French single beds suitable for both adults or children. Nicely furnished with an original French Armoire, chest of drawers and bedside pedestals.

Both bedrooms are light, bright with typical French village and garden views.


La Charmante, holiday cottage has one bathroom and conveniently, 2 wcs.

The bathroom has original wooden floors and a new double length, luxurious walk-in rain shower. After a great day out, experience a fabulous shower with a targeted jet spray system !

There is a modern basin, mirror with low wattage lighting and a very useful power point for shaving and a small cupboard for storage.

For our guests staying longer than a week we offer a fresh change of towels weekly at no extra charge.


There is a fireplace in the lounge and wall heater system throughout the cottage.


The French Cottages are conveniently located between the city of Angouleme (capital of the Charente) and Poitiers, (capital of Poitou Charentes).

A short drive away are family tourist attractions, water parks, boat rides,. A short walk away are canoe rides, Kayaking, tennis, marked cycle routes, street markets.

" Circuit des Ramparts" a classic car annual race, is held every September through the streets of Angouleme.

Within a short stroll or cycle, of the French Cottages is the market town of Ruffec with a helpful Tourist Office.

Garden and outside

These holiday rental cottages have a large garden, private forest, walled garden, riverside barbecue facilities with tables and chairs - perfect for al fresco dining, it is light till 10 pm in Summer ! There are also picnic spots, several relaxed shaded or sunny seating areas and covered dining areas that can seat up to 22 guests.

The summer kitchen at the holiday rental cottages are very popular for day or night time. Relax in the grounds at the French cottages, while watching the resident ducks wander by while enjoying your fresh croissants and pastries from the nearby Ruffec boulangeries.

Parking and garages

Gated on-site car parking provided at no extra charge with your holiday cottage rental.

Visitor suitability

The French Cottages are a perfectly placed holiday base for enjoying and exploring the Charente area for couples, romantic holidays, families with teenagers, families with children and friends. These holiday rental cottages always offer a discounted rate for house hunting holidays and short term self catering holiday rentals.

Not suitable for the less mobile as the cottage is on 2 floors.

Information about any additional facilities

New for 2018 - Try the new solar shower ! Enjoy a swim or refreshing dip in the new spring water plunge pool.

Play boules in the bigger boules area, enjoy outdoor games, activities for children and teenagers. Picnic in the private forest, or along the calm Charente River, barbecue along the river, eat al fresco in the covered or open summer dining areas, at the French Cottages, the choice is yours !


  • Cleaning

  • Internet

  • Linen

  • Shared pool


Antiques/Brocante Market

Name of nearest antiques/brocante market: Ruffec Brocante
Distance: 1 km


Family activities

Fishing nearby

Species of fish: Many different small to medium size fish incl. trout
Name of nearest fishing location: Les Trois Fontaines
Distance: 8 km


Name and address of nearest golf course: Golf Hirondelles
Distance: 30 km

Horse riding

Name and address of nearest stables: La Petit Trail Balzatois
Distance: 14 km



Name/number of nearest marked trail: Verteuil Sur Charente 5 km


Wine tasting

Name and address of nearest wine producer: Saturday Ruffec
Distance: 1 km

About the Owner/Advertiser, Mrs Susan Du Bois

I have enjoyed many happy and successful years in the hotel and timeshare sectors of business before having the fantastic opportunity of moving to France.

Year property purchased 2008
Why this location? These holiday rental cottages are a short stroll from a lively market town and within easy reach Ferry ports, highways and major airports (Bordeaux, Paris, La Rochelle, Poitiers, Limoges).
Unique benefits of property The French Cottages have a tranquil, picturesque river side location with a short drive to family touristic attractions. These holiday rental cottages have a superb location with an easy stroll to a market town with shops, bars, restaurants, train station, banks, boulangeries and more.

The Owner Recommends

A Day Out on a Train

Ruffec conveniently has a Train Station. Take a pleasant French train ride to Angouleme, Poitiers, La Rochelle, Paris or wherever you fancy, for a fun day out !


Lively city Cathedral St. Pierre. Museums including the Famous Comic Museum, very interesting for all ages. “Circuit des Remparts’ car event and race every September. Vintage Cars, Lamborghinis, Porsches etc. race on a Monaco style street circuit. Less than 30 minute drive from Charmante Holiday cottage

Chateau Visits & Countryside Walks 3 - 8 minutes

Ruffec has 2 lived in chateaux that are not open to the public but can be admired. Nearby, the Chateau at Verteuil is open to the public. Countryside walks are steps away in either direction and are mostly flat while nearby forest walks offering more challenging adventure.

Fresh Produce and Seafood Market

Don't miss the Fresh Produce and Regional Products, Wine tasting and the Fresh Atlantic Seafood Market every Wednesday and Saturday. A 3 minute stroll from Charmante holiday cottage

La Rochelle - Train or Car

Fun day out - wander this lively Port City. Enjoy the delicious seafood dishes at the many restaurants by the harbour. Explore the beautiful beaches along the coast and don't forget to visit the Aquarium. A pleasant drive less than 90 minutes or catch the local train

Le Rejallant Swimming, Fun Canoe Rides and Bike Rental

A 5 Minute cycle or drive to Swimming, fishing (smaller fish), canoe, kayak and velo rental. Good sized outdoor Childrens play area. Riverside picnic spots and a restaurant with "plat de Jours" with stunning views ! Bike rental 5 minutes or less from La Fontaine Ruffec

Nautilus water park and water sports

Less than 30 minutes from La Fontaine Ruffec are Indoor and outdoor pools, exciting water sports including windsurfing, sailing and fishing ! The fantastic Nautilus water park with water slides is fun for all ages.

Poitiers Futurscope, Notre Dame La Grande Church, Museums

Drive or take the train to Poitiers to visit Notre-Dame La Grande Church. Lots of architectural heritage with old streets, museums, shopping and restaurants. Exciting, fun outing by car is a visit to Futuroscope, a theme park with rides, live shows, fireworks; fun for all ages. Less than 50 minute drive from Charmante Holiday cottage Ruffec

Royan and Coastal Beaches, Palais sur Mer

Visit any one or all of the many beautiful beaches along this Atlantic coastline including Royan, Palais sur Mer etc. for a full days outing. Approx. 1 h 30 minutes drive from Charmante Holiday Cottages

Tree Climbing Adventures - 8 minutes

Supervised high tree climing adventures - inexpensive fun for all ages. Try a 1 hour fun Tree Climbing Adventure, Less than 8 minute drive from La Fontaine Ruffec

Vallée des Singes a 35 Acre wildlife park

A 35 acre wildlife park with no cages or fences, just many species of monkeys roaming free. An exciting day out for all the family and great photos to be had. Less than 30 minute drive from Charmante Holiday cottage, Poitou Charente

Wine, Pineau, Cognac Tasting and Restaurants 3 minutes

Three minutes to nearby restaurants and wine tasting. Pineau tasting Ruffec market on Saturdays or by rendezvous at the local producer. Take a 20 minute drive from Charmante Holiday Cottage for a day out to tour the famous distilleries nearby and in Cognac.

Stroll to Restaurants and Shopping

Take a break from driving and stroll to Ruffec restaurants, bars and interesting individual shops just minutes from La Fontaine Ruffec.
Visit tourist office daily for updated events and things to do for all ages, in the local area.
Don't miss the "Plat du Jour" lunches at special prices well prepared with fresh local ingredients and local wines.

Tennis - 5 minute walk

Enjoy a game of Tennis. Indoor tennis courts and outdoor tennis courts are within a 5 minute walk of Fontaine gites.

5 Reviews
  • Cleanliness: 9.2
  • Comfort: 8.4
  • Condition: 8.6
  • Facilities: 8.6
  • Local Amenities: 8.2
  • Setting: 9.2
  • Value for Money: 8.4
10 / 10 Rob, Julie 5 December, 2016

Welcoming hosts in an absolutely wonderful, comfy hideaway tucked away in this interesting part of the Charente ! Loved the typically french cottage, the bed was very comfortable and the walk in shower fantastic. A great location for many things, chateau visits, street markets and close to the cities of Angouleme and Poitiers. There is loads to see and do around and about, our favourites were the relaxing canoe / kayak journeys with our son on the Charente River, local cycling routes, cognac tasting, loved strolling to restaurants and enjoyed a day at the La Rochelle Aquarium.
Our daily treat was the short walk to the boulangerie and enjoying our breakfast croissants in the spacious grounds and what a wonderful way to begin each day ! We have no hesitation in recommendiing Fontaine gites Ruffec and Charmante holiday cottage.

Owner response

Thank you for your lovely review of Charmante Holiday Cottage in Ruffec . We are always happy to help our guests. Glad to hear that you and the family enjoyed your holiday stay. Thank you for your new booking. We look forward to your return visit.

8 / 10 Ramsden 30 August, 2016

Fantastic outside space !!! There are many different sections of the garden for children to play in and for eating outside as a family. We had a great time at the Gite exploring the local area and Abby & Jo were very good hosts. Few observations for families that the plunge pool is not heated so was fairly cold and not suitable for swimming/inflatables but OK to splash about in after a long day out. The gite was clean, well furnished but quite small inside and the TV/DVD and WiFi are all located in communal area which is shared with one other Gite, there is no TV within the property.

Owner response

We were pleased that you had such a wonderful time enjoying all the facilities within the property, alfresco dining etc and that you were able to make such good use of the plunge pool. Most guests find the plunge pool temperature perfect during the hot summer holidays and enjoyable to use. In Ruffec there are also heated indoor pools, within a 5 minute walk from the cottage.

We find that our guests prefer not to stay indoors and watch TV during the hot summer months, however, we do provide English and French TV, DVD’s etc for those who prefer to remain indoors. Our chateau holiday cottages offer different options in terms of size etc and your concerns could easily have been resolved at the time.

6 / 10 Richygal 9 December, 2015

The main problem with this Gite was the lack of privacy,the gite host was always there.We were constantly told to switch of lights,not to let our child make a noise in the splash pool,told our child had left fingerprints on the TV ! The TV lounge was shared which was not clear in the advert luckily the couple we shared it with had young children & we got on together.The accomodation itself was very French & we liked it apart from the fact there was no TV in your gite ! If you dont mind your gite host always being there it might be for you but we found it suffocating and it spoiled what should have been a wonderful holiday we even thought about leaving early.We think this gite should be marketed for elderly couples no children but not for 40 somethings with children.I have tried to be honest with this review,the place itself was picture postcard but the lack of privacy and poor hosts spoiled it & if I can prevent this happening to another family then I have achieved something by writing this review.It is in no way meant to be offensive just honest ! Cleanliness & maintenance wise faultless ,just not made to feel welcome in fact the oppisite ! Such a shame it could have been a wonderful time with a great review.

Owner response

Many families of forty something with children of all ages, stay in this high quality rental, where some gites share a new TV, Games etc room where kids like to meet. Our Visitor's book being a candid reflection of holiday makers comments for our gite.
July was very hot and light until 10 pm but our guests insisted on leaving every light and lamp in the house on 24 / 7 ! Street lights in France go off around 1 am to save energy so our rental rules ask that guests also be eco aware. They slept with every light on, causing disturbance to others and managing to burn out 2 new chandeliers !
Complaints were received that their toys filled the pool which clearly had prohibited use, in a shared private pool. A water park and leisure beach are both within a short drive.
The hosts' response is in no way meant to be offensive, just honest ! Luckily, we were home, one evening, when they almost caused a fire. The oven was left unattended for hours at max 250 degrees while they had drinks at the pool and couldn't hear smoke and fire alarms ! Next, the new glass cooking hob was used as a cutting board and wooden stairs damaged. Our beautiful, white, french bed linen and towels were left on the floor, ruined by self tanning cream !
After secretly cancelling their security deposit cheque, these guests drove off refusing to pay anything towards the damage they had caused.
A family with children in another gite commented "perhaps they are better suited to a camp site"

9.7 / 10 Adrian & Alison Wilson 14 October, 2015

This is our second time at this property, although in a different Gite and certainly wont be our last.
The attention to detail and cleanliness of this property are high and the host made us feel very welcome. They also provided information on local shops and events in the area which we found extremely helpful.

The location and the surrounding area is fantastic and the grounds of the property and facilities are definitely worth a look.

There is a lot to do in the surrounding area, which includes canoeing, cycling, visiting a number of Chateau's, and the velo-rail.

We would highly recommend this property and the town of Ruffec to anyone travelling around the Charente.

Owner response

Thank you for your kind review of your second holiday stay at Fontaine Gites. We were pleased that you had the time to explore more of what this fabulous part of the Charente has to offer.

We look forward to welcoming you and the family back anytime.