Around Maison D'hibou you will find a selection of wonderful french towns and villages within a 30 minute drive, where you can shop, kayak, walk or simply take in the french way of life.
The nearest town is Barbezieux which is about 10 minutes drive away. Here you will find two larges supermarkets and a small shopping park. The town’s tourist office is situated in the old chateau. There are restaurants, cafes and shops plus a weekly market. Around and about you will find many small individual Cognac distillers where you can partake of the traditional “degustation” . Just call in and they will ply you with cognac and show you around their small vineyard and distillery – no appointment is necessary.
Why not visit a brocante which is a local street bric-à-brac market which pop up all over the place throughout the year.
Cognac is about 25 minutes away, a vibrant town where the annual international jazz festival takes place in July. Well worth a visit for its shops, restaurants and street cafes. It is also home to many of the famous Cognac houses including Hennessey which offers a great boat trip across the river to its distillery.
Then there is the town Jarnac built on the banks of the Charente. Spend a day with a picnic on the rivers edge. A huge length of riverbank affords the perfect spot to watch this beautiful river or have a paddle in the shallow waters or hire a canoe and tackle the mini rapids further along the bank. You can also take one of the guided tour boats which offer a beautiful tour along the river. Here too is Napoleon’s impressive Cognac house of “Courvoisier”. The large museum is situated right on the banks of the river where a huge glass wall affords a view of the hundreds of Cognac barrels stored there. Well worth a visit. There is a children’s area along the banks of the river and a nice café for lunch or dinner.
In the other direction is the historic centre of the Charente...Angouleme – a charming mix of old and new where cobbled streets wind around the town in the old quarter where individual shops, cafes and restaurants abound. Something for all ages including bars and the old indoor food market for the gastronomes among you.
Nearer to your gite is a nice restaurant in Guimp, just a short bike ride away. Or take a trip to Pons to walk around the ancient city walls and enjoy a lovely meal at one of the many restaurants.
Chez Dauve and Maison D’hibou are set in a remote area in the small hamlet of Barrett. It's quiet and you will need a car if you want to explore. Having said that, you may choose just to enjoy the views and chill by the pool with a glass of wine and a good book. It’s a hard life but...you are on holiday after all.
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