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LIVING FRENCH HOLIDAYS
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AN INTRODUCTION TO THE MONSEGUR & DURAS AREA -
Come to this area of France and you are really in for a treat. This is a particularly quiet and beautiful part of South West France -
Easy to get to. The nearest airports to Duras and Monségur are Bordeaux (Merignac Airport) -
Eurostar goes to Paris from where it will also link you straight into the high-
Self catering holidays in local French villages. Recent additions to our portfolio are Blanchet and Maison St Georges. Blanchet is situated in a valley near to Monsegur and Duras. The property offers a pool and accommodates up to 8 guests plus baby.
Near to the houses are the towns of Monségur, Duras, Marmande, Eymet and Ste. Foye la Grande. Monsegur has its own cinema that shows an English language film once a month. Each town holds a colourful weekly day market, selling excellent local produce. In July and August Monsegur, Duras and Levignac-
The iron covered market is 19th century and was built in two phases. From 1867 to 1872 the peripheral galleries were constructed, and completed by the central skylight in 1897.
The governor's tower is hexagonally shaped and houses a staircase set in front of the main building. It was built at the end of the 15th century after the Hundred Years War and is an example of late Gothic style. Pilasters on either side of the door bear strange inscriptions, the meaning of which is unknown. The tympanum is decorated with a Tudor arch. In one angle a bartizan rests on a corbel in the form of a griffin. The weathervane, a privilege of the nobility, dates from the revolution.
Parallel to the main axes, the alleyways marked out the depth of the building lots (8.6m x 25.8m). In the most typical of them, Ruet (back lane) du Soleil you can still see corbels that once supported wooden footbridges. There are various half-
In Monsegur the rampart walk (chemin de ronde) offers a circular stroll around the ramparts with some stunning far-
Jazz Festival in Monsegur. During the summer months fetes are held in nearby villages and towns when sometimes the town square plays host to visiting bands. Visit Monsegur's annual 24 hr. Jazz and Swing Weekend that normally takes place over the first weekend in July, with up to 30 bands swing-
Around Duras and Monsegur. About 30 to 45 minutes drive away are Eymet, Bergerac and St. Emilion, all well worth exploring. St. Emilion is our favourite and to give you a flavour of this medieval town, during most of the year an open sided tourist tram takes you on a short interesting tour of the ancient cobbled streets and nearby famous vineyards. It also has the largest underground monolithic church in Europe, hewn out of a solid limestone cliff between the 8th and 12th centuries. In our opinion, St. Emilion has grabbed the world's share of excellent restaurants and history.
For a day's sightseeing, clients interested in excavation sites and prehistoric caves will find an excellent selection.
The Landes Forest is designated a regional natural park and is a treasure trove of flora and fauna, including more than 260 species of migratory birds in the Teich Bird Reserve. A leisurely cycle among the sun-
Good food and drink in abundance. The area abounds with excellent vineyards and restaurants, and the region is noted for its superb 'foie gras' (goose liver pate), duck dishes such as 'confit de canard' and 'magret de canard'. Weekly markets selling local produce are held in all of the towns.
Not only is the region famous for wines (Bordeaux, Duras and Entre-
The city of Bordeaux is a magnificent example of 18th century grandeur with its ancient quarters, wide avenues and numerous historical monuments, including the elegant Grand Theatre (Opera House). It has a vibrant nightlife, a botanical garden, well known churches, museums and art galleries, a good shopping centre and, for antique hunters, an area well known for its antiques.
The region is blessed with three UNESCO World Heritage sites, within 20 minutes of Bordeaux -
Bergerac Airport has a parachute club, whilst Eymet has an English Cricket Club and welcomes visitors. Bikes can be hired locally with delivery direct to the client's holiday farmhouse. The Tourist Office in most towns has details including suggestions for walks and bike rides.
The temperate and climate is usually very agreeable, with warm weather normally beginning as early as April or May and lasting well into September and October for the grape harvest, 'vendange'. During the hot summer days there is usually a refreshing breeze. The swimming pools at the farmhouses we have available for rental are normally open for swimming between May and the end of September or early October, depending on water temperatures.
Horse riding, fishing, clay pigeon shooting and canoeing are all within easy reach, and the Atlantic coastline offers facilities for surfing and windsurfing. For golfers there are a selection of private and municipal courses, details of which are in the House Book at each property. One of the best courses is at Chateau de Vigiers -
This is just a very brief introduction to an area that really does offer something for everyone. More detailed local information on much of the above, including vineyards, restaurants, beaches, sporting facilities and places of historic interest are included in the farmhouse House Book.
For private catering, wine tours and culinary experiences see www.lovingaquitaine.com
Whetted your appetite? View available properties at www.Livingfrench.com
Living French Holidays wish you 'Bon Voyage'.