14 August 2015 by Amy Buckingham
Holiday in a 14th century Loire Valley Farmhouse with a difference at La Guimarderie
Only a relatively short drive from the Channel ports (3 hours 15 minutes from St Malo) Loire Valley is one of the most beautiful areas of France. With an abundance of chateaux, a warm climate and surrounded by vineyards, the city of Chinon is steeped in medieval history and the whole area is rich with culture.
Situated in the heart of the Val de Loire area also known as the garden of France, Chinon is famous for some of the best value wines in France, and many gastronomic delights such as goats’ cheeses, wild mushrooms, game and home-made wild boar patés.
Idyllic 14th century farmhouse retreat
La Guimarderie is a 14th century farmhouse encompassed by one acre of land – most people’s idea of the perfect retreat. The house itself reveals medieval features such as solid stone walls, like one might find in a monastery and the stone walled garden space is the perfect spot to relax and put your feet up. For those wanting to make the most of the splendid summer evenings, eating outside is always an option with a stone built barbecue and seating under the grapevine, or beside the 16m heated swimming pool.
This property has all the amenities needed to feel at home. You are able to pack lightly as the property offers a washing machine and a tumble dryer, in the cooler evenings the double lounge has an open fireplace. Fill up the large fridge with the local produce bought at the nearby markets; where farmers come to sell their hand-picked strawberries and tomatoes and fishmongers offer fresh fish from the Loire, here you will always find something that takes your fancy.
Loire Valley – the perfect location for the whole family
This 3 bedroom villa is situated in an ideal location for the whole family, set in a beautiful tranquil area ideal for walking, cycling and if you love a game of golf, there are amazing golf courses all within easy driving distance of Chinon. The children can take a daytrip to the zoo and get close to the animals out in the wild.
The stone-built barbecue in the garden overlooks the amazing Château Du Rivau. Discover not only a genuine medieval castle at the heart of a UNESCO world heritage site, but contemporary sculptures and a delightful restaurant serving local specialities and produce from the château gardens. The 14 gardens evoke wonderful stories and legends from literature over the centuries.
Steeped in history
If you would like to learn more about the history of the area visit the two neighbouring towns. Chinon is a medieval city and for many generations, it was the home to many a King and the government. A short distance away is Richelieu – a walled city with striking squares and amazing architecture.
The centre of Chinon is very charming; its streets are cobbled and lined with houses, shops and restaurants in beautiful old buildings, many of which date back to the fifteenth century. When deciding what to have for lunch take your pick, it is guaranteed to be delicious!
A relaxing, cultural holiday experience – close to home
The owner Nigel Palmer “chose the area because it was near to the Channel, reducing travel time and cost. It is also a red wine area therefore benefiting from good weather most of the time. It is also a particularly beautiful part of France where most of the Châteaux are situated and where the countryside is particularly beautiful”.
At certain times of year the owners offer residential stays where permaculture, creative arts and other activities can be enjoyed.
Nigel believes that the tranquillity of La Guimarderie will really help you to switch off from the cares of everyday life. By staying in La Guimarderie holiday gite, you can feel enlightened knowing that all of the rental income is donated to African Vision Malawi, helping orphans in rural Africa.