10 April 2012 by Claire Sanchez and Penny & John Hitchings
La Betoulle, Chasseneuil, Poitou Charentes
Imagine sunning yourself in the beautiful unspoilt region of Poitou Charentes, in the stunning grounds of a manor house… just a fantasy? Not necessarily, you can make this dream a reality with a short break or holiday at La Betoulle.
Nestled in the heart of the Charente, this 90 acre estate featuring bed & breakfast accommodation in the stunning Manoir and 2 self-catering gites, is perfect for couples and families looking for either a relaxing break or active holiday.
The Charente is France’s second sunniest region after the Cote d’Azur and La Betoulle is the perfect place to enjoy those long sunny days, either around the azure blue waters of the large swimming pool, or with a game of tennis or giant chess. For those who prefer a more peaceful getaway, you’ll always find a tranquil corner in this expansive estate to truly unwind, and for those visitors who want to stay connected free wi-fi is available.
Activities in the Charentes
Perfectly positioned between Angouleme, Poitiers and Limoges, there is plenty to see and do off-site, if you can drag yourself away. Younger visitors will love La Vallée des Singes where the monkeys wander freely and lemur feeding time is not to be missed, with these delightful creatures chasing around the legs of the park’s visitors.
Just outside Poitiers is Futuroscope, a park filled with futuristic cinematic adventures and a spectacular evening show. For those with more grown up tastes the region is the home of Cognac with organised tours and tastings around the distilleries of the most famous varieties – Remy Martin, Hennessy and Martell. And of course with the sunshine come the vines and the region has these and their delicious produce in abundance.
If you’re feeling more active, visit the Lacs de Haut Charente for watersports, the region’s miles of ramblers’ and cycle paths or even the velorail between Confolens and Manot, where visitors can pedal along the disused rail tracks here – a brilliant work-out before sampling the region’s superb cuisine.
Historical attractions & festivals
Oradour is the region’s haunting reminder of WWII, a village frozen in time, after its destruction at the end of the war. To step further back in history visit Rochefort with its Napoleonic factory, currently reconstructing the frigate “Hermione”, which will be launched this July.
Of course the beautiful towns of Angouleme, Poitiers, Limoges and the Charente’s UNESCO World Heritage site Bordeaux are all well worth a visit to soak up the local culture and experience the wonderful restaurants.
As with other regions the Charente plays host to a number of festivals throughout the summer months, notably Cognac Blues Passion Festival in July, Confolens’ Music Festival in August and in September the Circuit des Remparts in Angouleme, a classic car street race around the town.
Onsite self-catered gites
Penny and John would be delighted to welcome you to any of their 4 bed & breakfast rooms in Le Manoir or in their self-catering gites: “La Tiède” (2 bedrooms, sleeping max 5) and “Le Petit Bois” (1 bedroom, sleeping max 3).
Both self-catering properties come fully equipped and have private terraces. “Le Petit Bois” is perfect for a romantic getaway, and “La Tiède” is particularly suited to family groups especially those with active older children.
Penny and John chose this property for its amazing potential both as bed & breakfast accommodation and self-catering holiday lets.
Obviously the temptation of this 90 acre site including the region’s biggest swimming pool and room for growing their own produce and bee-keeping, made this an opportunity not to be missed!
Gourmet cuisine in the Charentes
The personal touch is apparent to all who stay. The sumptuous buffet breakfast that is served up every morning (supplement payable for self-catering guests) regularly features homemade jams and honey (all available for purchase).
Penny, who has recently attended a Tasting France baking workshop, also regularly bakes cakes, which she generously shares with her guests, and a selection of teas, coffee and mineral water is available 24/7.
For dinner there are a number of options available, including the highly recommended La Grange Aux Oies at Chateau de Nieuil (the restaurant’s proximity is one of the main reasons the couple bought this property!) which offers gourmet cuisine in beautiful surroundings and where the reasonably priced week day menu will set you back just 25€ for a main course, dessert, wine and coffee.
There are many other reasonably priced restaurants, bars and cafes in the area. Penny and John are on hand and will be delighted to offer their recommendations and help organise any activities you wish to partake in. For guests in B&B accommodation an “assiette gourmand” welcome dinner is available for the first night of your stay for the spectacular price of just 12€ per head.
Come and discover this spectacular property for yourself! Bed & breakfast prices start from 70€ per night, and self-catering accommodation ranges from £385-835 per week (La Tiède) and £245-445 per week (Le Petit Bois). Many special offers are available throughout the year so be sure to check them out.
Penny and John look forward to welcoming you to their stunning home and grounds, they hope you’ll…
Escape, Relax & Unwind!