This location has multiple holiday properties
A very warm Irish welcome awaits you at Bel-Air gites. Bel-Air has been a favourite with holiday makers for many years.
Bel-Air has 5 individual gites and stands in 25 acres of unspoilt countryside in beautiful Charente-Maritime.
Chataigniers is one of 5 gites separate and uniquely individual in style, size and stand around the old farms courtyard and handy for the pool.
Chataigniers sleeps 8.
If you're planning the big family reunion or holiday, we can accomodate up to 30 people if you hire all 5 properties.
- All bed linen and bathroom towels and pool towels are provided.
On arrival you will find a freshly baked gateau from the local boulangerie, a bottle of wine, fresh milk, coffee, teabags, olive oil, salt pepper, sugar. Gites are stocked with a supply of toilet paper, kitchen roll, cleaning products, bin liners, dishwasher tablets, cling film and tin foil.
What our guests say:
"We stayed at Bel-Air for May half-term 2014. Our gite was Chai and we had a fab time (two adults and two kids aged 3 and 6). The whole process was faultless from booking to departure. Patricia and Paul are excellent hosts, fantastic communications with Patricia provided confidence ahead of the holiday by being able to phone or email Patricia and always receiving timely responses. The gite itself was perfect, everything you need is catered for and it is easily the best equipped accommodation we have stayed in. You can confidently travel here (with young children especially) and be certain that you will have what you need for an enjoyable holiday. Great quiet location but handy for Royan (25 min), Cognac (30 min), La Rochelle (1 hour) and Bordeaux (50 min car plus a tram to ride into the centre). Lots to do and see nearby or stay at your gite and enjoy the sun, pool and play area with the kids. Supermarket 10 minutes drive away, local boulangerie 5 minutes drive and perfect for practising your French! I can't fault the accommodation or the hosts..." Lee and Zoe, May 2014
All gites have fully equipped kitchens. Kitchen has a 5 ring gas cooker, washing machine, dishwasher, microwave and fridge, table and appropriate number of chairs.
Gites are stocked with a supply of toilet paper, kitchen roll, cleaning products, bin liners, dishwasher tablets, cling film and tin foil.
The property is furnished with comfortable leather sofas and has a television and dvd player, we have an extensive selection of dvds available for your use.
There is a patio door leading from the living room to the private patio.
Chataigniers - Three bedrooms. Two double rooms, each with a double bed and space for a cot, if needed, the third bedroom with twin beds and bunk beds.
Bed linen provided.
Cots and baby equipment are available free of charge.
Chataigniers 3 bedrooms, 2 shower rooms.
Bathroom towels supplied.
Electric heaters in all gites.
The gamesroom has a pool table, table tennis, Smoby garage and work bench , Fisher Price music table and baby walker and lots of other toys to choose from. There is also a large selection of books and dvds for all ages and a PS2.
Outdoors there is plenty of space for running around safely or how about a game of Giant Jenga or boules. We also have a trampoline with safety net, basketball, swings and slide, climbing net, see-saw and of course the fully fenced heated swimming pool.
The holiday home has its own private patio with a bbq and patio furniture giving the chance of seclusion without isolation.
- Heated Swimming Pool
- Volley Ball
- Climbing frame and swings
-Buckets and Spades
Covered parking available for all guests.
Ideal for family holidays or large groups.
Short and long term lets possible outside high season.
To take the stress out of having to pack all your baby equipment, we have cots, highchairs, pushchairs, potties, trainer toilet seats, bouncers, steriliser bags and lots of other baby and toddler equipment available, at no extra charge. Just let us know in advance what you will need. We have at least 2 of most items, so, ideal for those travelling with twins.
-Family run Gite complex, owners are on site to help make sure your holiday is as special as you would like.
We realise that you would like to be absolutely sure who you are dealing with before you part with your hard earned cash. If you would like to verify who we are:
- Feel free to call us for a chat on +33 683998743
- you can contact the local tourist office at Mortagne sur Gironde, we are listed on their website.
- As required under French law ,we are registered with the local Mairie at Brie sous Mortagne. A copy of our 'Declaration' can be provided on request.
-During July and August changeover day is Saturday, we can be flexible at other times.
-Reservations are from 4pm on arrival day to 10 am on departure day (we can be flexible outside the high seasons)
-Deposit of 25% to secure a reservation with the balance due 8 weeks before the beginning of the holiday.
-Credit card payments accepted.
A very warm Irish welcome awaits you at Bel -Air gites. Bel - Air has been a favourite with holiday makers for many years. In 2010 we decided it was time to escape from the rat-race to 'live our dream' in the Charente Maritime . We took over the well established child and toddler friendly Bel Air gites at the beginning of the summer season in July 2010.We are convinced we made the right decision to move to this fabulous area... no going back!<br/>
|Year property purchased||2010|
|Why this location?||The sunny Charente-Maritime with its pretty seaside villages of Saint Georges de Didonne, Talmont, Meschers sur Gironde and Royan and the islands of Ile de Re and Ile D’Oleron ,is a favourite for those in search of a family holiday with sun, sea and sand
The Charente Maritime is fortunate enough to enjoy a microclimate, with long, warm summers and mild winters. Average daily temperatures during mid-winter are a mild 9 to 10 °C, whilst July and August temperatures exceed 25 °C. The area is second only to the Cote D’Azur in terms of the annual amount of sunshine it receives (2250 sunshine hours)
The beautiful sandy beaches of Meschers and Royan (Grand Conche, Chay beach, Pontailliac beach) are just a 20 minute drive away from Bel Air Gites. There is every type of beach imagineable from the pretty cove beaches of Meschers , the sweeping white sandy beaches, each some 3kms long at St George and at Royan.
|Unique benefits of property||Bel Air Gites is truly child/toddler and baby friendly. We know it takes more than a travel cot to make the perfect child friendly family holiday!
As well as sheet and towels ( including pool/beach towels ),everything you need for babies and toddlers is available free of charge, cots, high chairs, booster seats, pushchair, baby monitors, black-out blinds, kids cutlery/crockery, potty, toilet training seats, night lights, bed guards, steriliser, just let us know in advance which items you will need.
The games room has a pool table, table tennis, Smoby garage and work bench , fisherprice music table and baby walker and lots of other toys to choose from. There is also a large selection of books and dvds for all ages.
Outdoors there is plenty of space for running around safely or how about a game of Giant Jenga, connect 4 or boules. We also have a trampoline with safety net, basketball, swings and slide, climbing net, see-saw and of course the fully fenced heated swimming pool.
Bel Air is also close to the miles of sandy beaches of the Atlantic coast and mostly uncommercialised seaside towns. We think is the ideal location to suit everyone's idea of a perfect family holiday.Close to fabulous sea-side town of Royan and the wonderful beaches of Meschers sur Gironde and ST Georges de Didonne
The Aquarium La Rochelle Located in the heart of town, next to the old harbour and the famous towers of La Rochelle, discover one of the main european private aquariums. Take a two hour’s journey into the depths of the oceans and meet 12 000 Atlantic, Mediterranean and Tropical animals in 3 million litres of water. Explore the magical and mysterious underwater world that keeps fascinating us.
The best zoo we have visited.
Right in the heart of one of the most beautiful pine forests in the area just north of Royan just 35 mins drive away, you will find La Palmyre Zoo. The most famous zoological park in France and recently voted European Zoo of the Year. The most visited tourist attraction in the department of Charente-Maritime. And, as a breeding zoo it is very different from most people’s idea of a zoo as many animals are completely free to roam – and there are more than 1600 of them!
You will meet apes, bears, cockatoos, crocodiles, elephants, giraffes, hippotamuses, jaguars, lions, panthers, parrots, pink flamingos, red ibis and even wolves. There is a polar bear basin a tropical greenhouse and a reptile house. There are shows with trained parrots and sea lions which are great for the kids
Bordeaux is a beautiful city which is world famous for its wines and wonderful architecture including the site at Saint Andrew Cathedral where Louis VII married Eleanor of Aquitaine. The centre of the city has many designer shops and car parking in the city centre should not be a problem. Bordeaux is the most famous wine region in the world. Most visitors come to the city and its surrounds to tour the chateaux, taste the world-class wines and indulge in the regional cuisine. The city is also known for its excellent museums, cafes and restaurants and vibrant nightlife. Wide avenues, neoclassical architecture and well-tended parks all give the city a certain 18th-century grandeur. Bordeaux has around 500 chateaux, or vineyards. There are two key areas of attraction, the Medoc and St Emilion. Firstly the Médoc, a large wine-growing area which lies northwest of Bordeaux, along the western shore of the Gironde Estuary. This is easily accessible by car ferry from Blaye, or from Royan
Cognac. The world's best-known brandy comes from the peaceful countryside surrounding the Charente River one hundred miles north of Bordeaux. This slow moving river, which King François I called the loveliest river in his kingdom, passes through a placid landscape of vineyards bathed by a clear and radiant light. A twenty-mile area called the 'golden circle" of cognac production encompasses Cognac and the second distilling town of Jarnac. Cognac, the medieval town which bears the name of the region, is attractive with its narrow medieval cobbled streets and elegant Renaissance facades. It is here that the fabled nectar has been created since the 17" century and that the very air one breathes is permeated by the heavy scent of spirits evaporating rom oak casks held in storage: this aroma is referred to as the "angels's share'. World famous firms such as Camus, Hennessy, Niartell, Otard, Prince Hubert de Polignac, Rémy-Martin, Courvoisier, and Renault-Bisquit are located here; each distillery has its own secret and unique process for mixing the various blends of its eaux-de-vie. Join a guided tour to learn about the double-distilling process that goes on in copper stills before the ageing in oak barrels where the precious liquor will improve, taking on its final bouquet and famous golden glow. Take a barge or a small train and discover the history of cognac, its vineyards, distilleries and museums which show you not only how it is made but proudly display the oldest reserve of cognacs dating back to 830. Then how about a taste!
We have a few bicycles available free of charge or additional bikes can be hired. Check out http://bikehiredirect.com/cyclingincharentemaritime.html
There are golf courses at Royan, Saintes and Cognac http://www.golfderoyan.com/ http://www.ville-saintes.fr/EXT/golf/golf_site.html http://www.golfducognac.asso.fr/
La Rochelle is most famous for its old harbor and its three outstanding medieval towers. For the locals, that familiar, inviting sight doesn't just symbolize the port's rich history: it's also a haven of style, good times and lively quayside cafes. The vibrant lifestyle attracts an international set and there are trendy bars and excellent restaurants a plenty. The town is full of fascinating details: look out for the huge chain on the restaurant-filled Cours des Dames, under the Tour de la Chaine. It used to be slung across the mouth of the harbor, between la Tour de la Chaine and its felloe sentinel, the Tour Saint-Nicolas. Third of la Rochelle's seafront towers is la Tour de la Lnaterne, in which a huge candle was lit nightly as a beacon for incoming craft. Another impressive piece of architecture on the harbor is the porte de la Grosse Horloge. Behind this portal, the town center is easily reached, and on the bustling arcaded streets, you'll see plenty of fine architecture. With its café and clubs, this is an exuberant town at any time of the year, but it excels during the summer with an international film festival and in mid-July, the nation's top musical happening, les Francofolies, in which French-speaking musicians and music-lovers from all over the world congregate.
Pôle-Nature de Vitrezay a 21 hectare nature reserve on the largest wild estuary in Europe is found at ST SORLIN DE CONAC on the Gironde river in the Charente-Maritime, Near the port town of Port Vitrezay, the marshlands and lakes of Pôle-Nature de Vitrezay are home to a number of animal and bird species including storks, herons, sea eagles, red kites, buzzards as well as otters. It is also an important stopping off point for migratory birds. Follow one of the paths through the wetland area stopping at observation hides along the way. Ramble or cycle on your own or take one of the guided tours. There are also boat trips plus fishing, canoeing, sailing or head out in a sea kayak. The traditional carrelets (fishing huts) on stilts with large nets can be rented.
The Miniature port of Saint-Savinien has A 'fleet' of hand crafted, electric boats. Children can choose from Mississippi steam boats, tugs, river pushing tugs, a trawler, a cargo ship, a sardine fishing boat or a ferry. Budding sailors can navigate the boats on the lake and along the miniature canals passing a boat wash-house, a fisherman’s cottage, a Japanese bridge. Radars, a lighthouse and a light ship guide them around a dredger, a refloating barge and various other ocean perils.
Open Sundays and bank holidays from April to September and every day in July and August from 2 pm to 6 pm.
Royan at only 20 minutes drive away, boasts a Sunday morning market (not to be missed). Shops are also open on this day making it a great morning out. Stay on for lunch and there are many restaurants catering for all tastes, this region is particulary famous for its seafood. There are many excursions that can be booked at the Marina, including visits to the well-known Fort Boyard, Phare de Cordouan (the lighthouse) and the Ile d'Oleron to name but a few. You can also catch a ferry here in Royan over to the Medoc and enjoy a day visiting the well known vineyards.
Saintes Located on the banks of the Charente river, this 2000 year old town was once the Roman capital of southwestern France. The presence of one of the oldest remaining amphitheaters as well as Roman baths, which may be visited, attests to this. Between visits to the cathedral of St-Pierre and the church of St-Eutrope, be sure to stroll through the wonderful medieval city of narrow streets and markets.
Pôle-Nature de Vitrezay a 21 hectare nature reserve on the largest wild estuary in Europe is found at ST SORLIN DE CONAC
on the Gironde river in the Charente-Maritime,
Near the port town of Port Vitrezay, the marshlands and lakes of Pôle-Nature de Vitrezay are home to a number of animal and bird species including storks, herons, sea eagles, red kites, buzzards as
well as otters. It is also an important stopping off point for migratory birds.
Follow one of the paths through the wetland area stopping at observation hides along the way. Ramble or cycle on your own or take one of the guided tours.
There are also boat trips plus fishing, canoeing, sailing or head out in a sea kayak. The traditional carrelets (fishing huts) on stilts with large nets can be
See what life was like for Neanderthal man and woman
Visit Paléosite , This 10-hectare theme park at Saint-Césaire near Saintes in the Charente-Maritime, is situated at the site of the 1979 archaeological dig where the fossilised remains of a young Neanderthal woman, nicknamed Pierrette, were found. The park includes recreated Neanderthal (and Homo Sapiens) villages with caves dwellings and animal skin teepees as well as cemeteries including that of woolly mammoths.
You can visit the original Pierrette dig and see fossils collected at the site, as well as collections from other prehistoric digs plus recreations of long-dead animals such as the woolly mammoth and sabre-toothed tiger.
Very popular among Paleosite’s attractions are the interactive areas where you can test your strength arm-wrestling a virtual Neanderthal, collect virtual artefacts as if you are an archaeologist and see how far you can throw a spear. Perhaps the most fun of all is the program which allows you to morph your face into that of a Neanderthal – and you can take the picture home with you!
Except during school holidays, the park is closed Mondays and Tuesdays.
April-June: 10am-7pm Wednesday to Sunday (the ticket office is closed between 12.30pm-1.30pm and one hour before the park closes).
July & August: 10am-8pm non-stop
September: 10am-7pm Wednesday to Sunday (the ticket office is closed between 12.30pm-1.30pm and one hour before the park closes).
October-Weekend 10.30am- 6,30pm
Adults : €10
Children 6-14 years : €6
Children under 5 : free
Route de la Montée Verte
17 770, Saint-Césaire
Tel: 0810 130 134
Spectacular Treetop Ropes Adventure Course.
Zipit Forest Adventures offers up to 4 hours of tree-top, fun-filled, adventure challenge in a healthy, outdoor setting for adults and children from age 7. Climb poles and climbing walls, swing into cargo nets, balance on a rope bridge, hurtle down a zipwire, even ride a BMX across a treetop bridge! From beginners to adrenaline junkies, we show you how to make your day a fun experience - push yourself that little bit further with guidance and encouragement from our instructors, knowing that you are secure in your harness.
Climb It, Swing It, Surf It, ZIPIT - but above all have fun and be adventurous!
*Discover the secrets of the Gironde estuary, the largest in Europe*
The Poitou-Charentes shares the mouth of the Gironde river with the Aquitaine. And Le Parc de l’estuaire was created to help visitors appreciate the complex geology and eco-system that makes up Europe’s largest estuary (75 km long and 12 km wide). The nature centre is situated in the much larger forest known as the forêt de Suzac, which extends for 350 hectares, more than 90 hectares of which are now protected.
At the heart of the park is the La Villa de l’Estuaire. This is home to the park’s permanent exhibition where through displays and interactive games the mysteries of the estuary are unveiled; how it was formed, how it is changing, how fragile this phenomenon of nature is, and what steps are being taken to preserve it.
From the tour de guet or lookout tower the park officials keep an eye out for forest fires. The tower is open to visitors and it is from her you can get a spectacular view of the estuary, the Mediterranean-style vegetation around the park, the coastline, beaches, forests … and local lighthouses, Phare (lighthouse) de Cordouan and and the Phare de la Coubre.
It is possible to walk through the park and to admire close up the pines and other trees, shrubs and plants of the park. The park also has another room where temporary exhibitions are held, a teashop and a small shop selling goods produced by local artisans.
The Parc de l’estuaire is open all year apart from December and January.
February to start of April: 2pm to 6pm every day
Early April to start of May: 10am to 12pm and 2.30pm to 6.30pm every day (except Sunday mornings).
Early May to 30 June: 2.30pm to 6.30pm every day
July to August: 10am to 7pm every day (except Sunday mornings)
First two weeks September: 10am to 12pm and 2.30pm to 6.30pm every day (except Sunday mornings).
Second half of September to end November: 2pm to 6pm every day
Audio tapes are av
Château des Énigmes, at Pons have a treasure hunt that is great fun for kids and adults alike . Solve the musketeer-themed puzzles t the castle through a series of 21 games that include fishing for corks, recognising the smell of an aromatic plants and solving the mystery of the Templar Code. The challenges are diverse, imaginative, large-scale and well constructed. Nice little cafe for a break half way through, too.
Only a 20 minute drive from your gite at www.belairgites.com
It is open daily from 4th April to 1st November, from 10am to 7pm (8pm in July and August).
Adult (over 12 yrs) : 14 €
Child ( 4 to 12 ) : 11 €
Under 4 yrs: Free