|La Maison D'Eté At Le Jardin du Berger||Self Catering||Flexible||2||4||1|
We also offer sewing holidays and retreats and cycling holidays - please see our website for details and contact us directly to discuss.
Le Jardin du Berger offers a dog friendly*, peaceful, relaxing holiday retreat yet just 10 minutes drive from the N10 and so ideally placed for discovering the pretty towns and unspoilt beaches of this part of France. There are two gites, La maison d'été (sleeps 4) and Le Pommier (sleeps 6) and they share the pool (4m x 11m) but both have their own garden. We are surrounded by fields of sunflowers and corn; just relax and unwind, away from the stresses of life... Bring a book... sit and doze under a tree or by the pool... Explore one of the busy local markets such as Chalais or Barbezieux, then come home to prepare and eat a leisurely lunch in the garden. Take a trip to famous Cognac, Angouleme or Bordeaux or drive out the coast for the day…
There are 2 completely separate self-catering cottages at Le Jardin du Berger. Le Pommier sleeps 6, and La Maison d'été sleeps 4; both have their own garden but share the pool.
La Maison d'été sleeps 4 people - it is a light and airy single storey 2 bedroomed holiday home with private garden and views over the swimming pool and open countryside. It is decorated in a fresh, simple style with comfortable, modern furniture and tiled floors throughout. It consists of an open plan main room(25 sq.m) with a well-equipped kitchen, dining area and comfortable sitting area, 2 bedrooms, a large shower room and separate wc. Outside there is a garden with bbq, table/chairs and comfortable seats for those long summer evenings. Of course, there is a also tv, dvd player, internet access and heating in all areas.
There is an open plan main room (lounge/dining/kitchen) which has a high beamed ceiling, and views out over the private garden to the swimming pool and countryside beyond. It includes a kitchen area equipped with new appliances - fridge freezer, gas hob, electric oven and dishwasher (there is a washing machine in the shower room) plus kettle and toaster; the cupboards are well-stocked with crockery, cutlery and other essentials. There is a dining table with 4 chairs.
The lounge area includes a comfortable sofa and two armchairs, coffee table, lamps and tv/dvd player, again with views onto the garden.
The double bedroom has a large window overlooking the garden and countryside and is bright and well-furnished with new furniture. It has a bed, double wardobe, chest of drawers, bedside tables and reading lights. The twin bedded room is furnished with new, light furniture and has a double wardrobe, chest of drawers, bedside tables and two single beds, one of which is dressed as a sofa/day bed.
A large, bright shower room with shower and basin and which also houses the washing machine, iron and ironing board; there is a separate wc off the corridor adjacent to the bedrooms.
There are efficient electric heaters in each room. These are independently controlled, making it suitable for year round holidays.
Tv and dvd player, dvds and books.
There is a private gravelled garden directly outside the cottage and overlooking the pool and countryside, from here you get glorious sunsets since the property faces south. There are comfortable seats with outdoor coffee table, a table and chairs for long leisurely lunches in the garden and a bbq.
Plenty of parking in the grounds.
The cottage is single storey so is suitable for people with limited mobility.
Dogs are welcome, however, please contact us directly before making a booking.
We have a large, bright textiles studio with ceiling window and frenchdoors opening onto a terrace - an ideal place for creativity... For sewing, painting, writing...
The owners are John and Bronwen Shepherd - hence the name of the property! - and we gave up our teaching careers in the UK in summer 2015. We wanted to do something different, to have an adventure... So, we sold our uk house and came out to France to find a new home, bringing with us our elderly cat Henry and our young golden retriever, Pippa. Our aim, for our own lives and for holidays, is to create somewhere ideal for relaxing, being creative and cycling.
|Year property purchased||2015|
|Why this location?||Our first visit to this part of France was in July 2015 when we were house hunting in 3 different areas - we were living in the Cotswolds and were looking for somewhere rural, with open views but within easy reach of a variety of towns because we wanted to live somewhere "real". We immediately fell in love with the stunning countryside, the miles of vineyards and sunflowers, and the lovely towns and villages in this part of the Charente. We also like the fact that Bordeaux - a beautiful, vibrant city - is close enough for day trips, and Angouleme within half an hour's drive.|
|Unique benefits of property||We're creating a Textiles studio where at certain times of the year we will host Textiles courses and holidays, or where guests can use the equipment and machines and work on their own creative projects. The woodland and surrounding countryside is obvious inspiration... We are also going to run cycling holidays later in the year... We love our private oak woodland which you drive through to reach the property and which makes arriving home feel very special... It's a beautiful, tranquil location surrounded by fields of various crops which add so much colour and interest.. That said, it's not at all isolated - there are lots of places to visit nearby... The property has a wonderful mix of character and charm, but light, modern and - we hope - comfortable rooms.. It's a peaceful place to be creative, to reflect, to relax...|
Barzieux is our lovely, local market town - Market days are Tuesday and Friday - and is typically French and very friendly. Make sure you walk around the old town to admire the local white-stone buildings which cluster in the shadow of the church.
The capital of the Charente department and is 230 feet above the Charente River; there are cobbled streets to explore, plus many cafes and restaurants for al fresco lunches... Around the historic centre (which is classed among the French Towns of Art and History) there are over 2km of ramparts to walk, and the boulevards that follow these walls have wonderful views across the surrounding countryside. In September it hosts the well-known "Circuit des Remparts", when vintage cars are driven around the ramparts. It is also famous for its comic strips and hosts the annual International Comics Festival, in January, but you'll find graffiti works of art throughout the city.
Aubeterre-sur-Dronne is one of France's "Plus Beaux Villages" (Most Beautiful Villages). This medieval hilltop village has a typical tree-lined town square, steep cobblestone streets, and red-tile roofed buildings plus interesting shops and cafes.
A pretty spa town with interesting shops and beautiful stone buildings. Its history dates back to the ancient romans but in recent years has it reinvented itself as a popular spa and leisure centre and several thousand visitors a year now visit to receive benefits of the water from the thermal springs.
The elegant town of Cognac has inspiring architecture and quaint narrow streets; the old town has many lovely 17th and 18th-century mansions. The name of Cognac is known the world over because of the brandy produced in the region, and the chance to visit the Cognac distilleries attracts many visitors. The town itself is interesting, with an attractive riverside and historical centre too.
The area is ideal for cycling on endless, quiet, undulating roads with each corner offering a new view of a vineyard, small village or a Romanesque church.
Bordeaux is a wonderful city full of beautiful and historic buildings - it's impossible to summarise here. This has recently been acknowledged by UNESCO who have classified 1810 hectares of the city of Bordeaux as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Wandering around Bordeaux you can enjoy large open boulevards, narrow paved medieval streets, large squares surrounded by cafés and restaurants, and lots of very impressive individual sites. The riverside has recently been restored and is now a key part of Bordeaux’s attraction. The Cite du Vin - Bordeaux's new monument to wine - opens on 2nd June 2016 and sounds fascinating!
Famous for its wine... Inside the town walls there are steep narrow streets with beautiful buildings, and several open squares, each more attractive than the one before. Saint Emilion is not to be missed if you are in the region. Built from the local yellow limestone, it is centred around a large square with a church on one side. You can also climb the steps inside the 53 metre high 13th century bell tower which sits on the square above for stunning views across the rooftops and countryside. There are plenty of cafes, restaurants, artisan shops and boutiques to keep you entertained if the historical interest starts to wane.
Royan is the most visited of the beach resorts in this part of the Atlantic coast. Much of the town was destroyed during the Second World War but it has been rebuilt in an attractive style. The Pontaillac quarter has kept some of the Old World atmosphere and contrasts with the ultra-contemporary cathedral with its stunning modern design. The biggest tourist attraction of Royan is nature; there are five sandy beaches.
Périgueux (the capital of the Dordogne department) has an imposing byzantine cathedral and an extensive medieval old town to explore. Tourist classifications for Périgueux include "town of art and history", "secteur sauvegarde"and "ville fleurie 4*"; it is unusual for a town to have 3 awards, which indicates how important Périgueux is as a tourist destination. There are really two towns to see, the medieval town and the roman town, as well as an imposing cathedral. When entering the medieval town you will see the Mataguerre Tower; the ramparts initially included 28 towers and 12 gates but the Mataguerre Tower is the last of these. Throughout the medieval centre there are various examples of houses that were owned by wealthy merchants.
Bergerac is a town on the northern bank of the Dordogne River and in the western part of the Dordogne department. It is one of the largest, most important towns in the region and has several highlights including an extensive medieval centre and a visit is highly recommended. The old town has some lovely streets and squares to explore, and a good selection of boutiques. Wandering around the streets of Bergerac old town you will see lots of attractive, medieval, half-timbered buildings. There are several restaurants scattered around in 'old-town' Bergerac among the attractive medieval half-timbered streets, and some open-air cafes.
Saintes was founded by the Romans in the 1st century AD, becoming the Gallo-Roman capital of Aquitaine; today, this friendly town on the Charente has something for everyone. The magnificent Germanicus Arch with its soaring twin arches and intricate carvings was built by the Romans at the entrance to a bridge and you can also wander the remains of the Roman amphitheatre. Set in a natural hollow, it still provides an atmospheric venue for summer concerts. Saintes was an important religious centre in the Middle Ages. You can also relax on a guided river cruise - a delightful perspective on this fascinating town
The quiet streets of this village are lined with typical Charentais houses, and there is much to enjoy just strolling around admiring the shop facades. It is best known for the imposing Villebois castle which stands on a promontory above the village. The vast defensive walls and six towers built in the attractive white stone of the area were built in the 12th-13th century give access to the inner castle through a door between two large round towers. Inside the walls of the Castle of Villebois a home was built in the 17th century to provide a more comfortable accommodation.
The Château de La Rochefoucauld is reminiscent of the magnificent châteaux of the Loire Valley. Built between the 12th and 16th centuries, this wonderful castle blends different architectural styles including impressive medieval towers and majestic Renaissance galleries. The magnificent Grand Courtyard shows an Italian influence and is one of the finest courtyards in France.
We have a large (app 45 m sq) Textiles studio equipped with Bernina sewing machines which you are free to use during your stay. You can work on the creative project of your choice either independently or, if you prefer, discussing your ideas with an experienced, qualified Textiles teacher. If you prefer something more structured, keep an eye on our website for upcoming courses after the high summer season. Or - contact me direct for a tailor made (pun intended) one-to-one course - let me know what you'd like to learn and I'll see if I can help!
Great location. Very quiet and relaxing. Owners were very helpful and lovely couple. We enjoyed the holiday despite bad weather. It was everything we were expecting . Used to staying in 5* all inclusive - this was very different but slow paced, relaxing and eloquent Gite. Car needed or bikes to be able to explore the beautiful towns and countryside.
Would highly recommend this property to others.
Thank you for this kind review - I'm so pleased you both enjoyed your holiday despite the very unseasonable weather! I was impressed you still managed to explore the area on your bikes, as well as finding time to relax and paint. I hope you also enjoyed the next stage of your holiday, too.