Exploring inland from Sequoia Parc - Al Fresco Holidays
Today, 27th July, the weather finally seems to be improving. We’ve had 15 days of not so good weather -some cloud, some heavy rain and even such a strong gale that the campsite was notified and told to tell all couriers to take away all furniture from the deckings. Makes life more interesting! Fortunately, nothing untoward happened – and it gives you something to talk about when you get back, especially if you can embroider your story a little bit, and of course, tell the children the story of “The Wizard of Oz”.
This morning, however, we woke to bright sunshine and the forecast seems to be good. Thank goodness, for everyone on holiday here. One advantage is that it has enabled, indeed encouraged, those who feel like some adventure, the chance to explore a bit further afield;
Inland, from the coast, the countryside is beautiful, with gently sloping fields, vineyards and forests. There are plenty of examples of roman architecture, pretty villages and wonderful chateaux.
Saintes is a pretty market town that was once the capital of the region, Charente-Maritime. It is famous for its roman ruins and for being the birthplace of a Dr Guillotin (something else to tell the children)! The most visited roman artifact is the amphitheatre which was built in a small valley on the outskirts of the town and had a seating capacity of 17,000. Only the first storey has survived today. The remains of the town wall can be seen on entry as can the aqueduct that carried the water supply for the roman baths. St Peters gothic cathedral is also a visitor attraction, as is the nunnery known as the ‘Abbaye aux Dames’. This has been restored and is used for many musical events.
Not far outside Saintes, the little village of Saint Savinien sur Charente is well worth a visit. Although the centre of the village, like many others in the region, has many shops which are closed down, the houses along the river give it a feel of Venice. They have been built with their foundations directly on the rock which borders the river, some even dug out of this rock. Just across the river from the main town,there is a beautiful park, which has been created on an island made from the river bends - Grenouillitte Island. Here, on a lake, children can rent out and captain miniature boats, some built as trawlers, ferries and even a Mississppi streamboat! Also on the island is a large children’s playpark and an indoor swimming pool which is open all year round. There’s also a 13 klms walk around the town which passes through changing scenery.
Just because the weather is dull and cloudy, and we are by the sea, we have discovered very many different places to visit that give a feel of the real France.
Al Fresco Reps – Sequoia Parc