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Poitou-Charentes Regional Overview

Posted by admin on June 3, 2019

Regional Description Poitou-Charentes

Poitou-Charentes is the most westerly region of France and the most northerly part of what is commonly referred to as South West France. The Poitou-Charentes area has lots of beauty and a reputation as being the second sunniest region of France has always made it a favourite with property buyers. The region consists of Charente Maritime, on the Atlantic coast…..Charente, the most southerly part….. Vienne to the east…and Deux Sevres to the north. Each department has its charms and each is very different from its neighbour. The whole region now forms part of the larger Nouvelle-Aquitaine, which was created by the merger of this region, Limousin and Aquitaine.

The most popular with French holidaymakers is Charente-Maritime with its stunning port at La Rochelle and its magical island of the Ile-de-Re reached by a bridge. These are the best known holiday destinations but there are also wonderful villages to discover where the vivid blue shutters of the white washed cottages contrast with the pink hollyhocks that blow in the sea breezes. Villages such as Talmont-sur-Gironde and Meschers-sur-Gironde will not disappoint. Inland the Roman town of Saintes is probably the best known settlement and is certainly a good market town to be close to when you choose a house in this part of France. Taking a river trip along the Charente river could certainly make you fall in love with this rural part of Charente-Maritime.

Inland from Charente-Maritime is the department of Charente. With its rolling hills, fields of sunflowers and pretty stone villages, Charente has always been popular with UK buyers of French property. To the south its boasts the town of Cognac.  I guess we all know what this is famous for so you won’t be surprised to know that the white grape vineyards stretch as far as the eye can see around Cognac.

Confolens and Angouleme are also attractive, bustling towns in Charente and the annual summer dance spectacle held in Confolens is a joy of colour, movement and music.

North of Charente is the department of Deux Sevres which is home to the Marais-Poitevin, an area of marsh land drained by canals. Floating gently downstream in a canoe, spying on all the wildlife in the reeds, hearing the birdsong and the sound of the fish jumping is pretty close to paradise. Away from the Marais-Poitevin the Deux Sevres is a rural, agricultural part of France but also boasts interesting towns such as Niort and Melle.

Finally, the most eastern department of Poitou-Charentes is Vienne  which is home to the capital of the region, Poitiers, with its bustling markets and numerous street cafes. Vienne is also a rural part of France and wild flowers abound in the hedgerows along the little lanes whilst the rivers of the area wind their way through numerous villages making such places as Angles-sur-Anglin, a village straight from a fairy story. If you haven’t been there, you must try to visit, happiness guaranteed!

So why choose Poitiers-Charentes?

  • One of the best climates in France
  • Access to the Atlantic coast, beaches and islands
  • Rivers, lakes and countryside in abundance
  • Roman and medieval villages and towns
  • Easy access from the UK by plane or TGV
  • Good value property, Charente-Maritime being the most expensive department but still representing fantastic value compared to the south of France
  • Delightful architecture ranging from white washed cottages on the coast to well proportioned stone cottages inland, grand village houses and even the odd castle or two…. and still some property to renovate.

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