Thursday, 6 June 2019

Summer flowers, Sunsets and Brocantes at Gites de La Richardière. JUNE 2019

Summer flowers, Sunsets and Brocantes

at Gites de La Richardière. JUNE 2019


Summer Flowers:
We mentioned in our last communication about some of the lovely places near to our Gites where there are excellent floral displays. Well, it's the season of flowers and, thanks to Patience's hard work we have our own excellent floral display in and around the grounds and gardens. This has been helped by our newly converted mini-barn which now houses a place to grow seedlings and early flowers ready for planting in the pots and hanging baskets around the Gites. It's all very colourful and worth seeing.
 
Sunset Lounge: Following an idea from a previous guest we have started putting into place a new seating area which looks due West and is ideal to view the colourful sunsets we experience through the summer. We were delighted to welcome Penny Alexander and her family recently and they became the first people to tryout the new "Sunset Lounge". We're sure there will be more than one glass of wine drunk in this location during the season.

Penny writes a blog which gives ideas for parents who wish to travel with their children. You can find our more by clicking here.

Brocantes: 
It seems that, spending a day with a load of old things which you've been hoarding in the garage laid out on a table for everyone to see, in the hope that someone might actually buy something,  is just as popular in France as it is in other countries. It is the season of Brocantes.
It is amazing what people bring out to sell, but we can guarantee that it will be very difficult to go home empty handed.

Travel Updates:
There are no new updates to report. With Brexit having been delayed again people are travelling a little more confidently and venturing further a field.
To keep up-to-date we invite you to visit the travel page of our blog. 

As usual, we would be grateful if you would forward this news letter to your family or friends if you think they might be interested a holiday here at Gites de La Richardière. Remember to #BOOKDIRECT

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

Monday, 6 May 2019

May 2019 Newsletter

          A special reason for visiting this region of France in May and June is to see the gardens and the flowers which adorn most of our local Chateaus and villages. If you are anything of a gardener then being in the Loire valley at this time of year can be a great joy. Even if you are not a gardener the displays are still worth a visit. Here are 3 examples.

Festival des Roses de Chédigny:

The Chédigny Rose Festival is celebrating its 14th year on May 18 and 19, 2019. Every year, some 15,000 visitors come to admire this remarkable village and its remarkable collection of roses. The artists of the village open their workshops and welcome the work of painters, sculptors, ceramists or photographers. Musicians and street painters enliven the streets, while associations related to the environment present their activities to visitors.

Tulips growing at Chateau Cheverny

Chateau Cheverny:

Inhabited by the same family for more than 6 centuries, the Château de Cheverny, its gardens, its labyrinth and its Tintin 3D exhibition will make you spend an unforgettable day with family or friends. Close by, in the village of Cheverny, there are some excellent restaurants to explore.

Chateau Villandry:

Is situated 15 km West of Tours in the Loire Valley, and it is famous for its magnificent geometrical gardens. The lands, where an ancient fortress once stood, were acquired by Jean Le Breton, in the 16th century, who constructed a new Chateau. During the French Revolution the property was confiscated by the state and in the early 19th century, Emperor Napoleon acquired it for his brother, Jérôme Bonaparte. In 1906, the property was purchased by Joachim Carvallo who created the beautiful gardens we know today. Le Chateau de Villandry, with it's huge historical heritage, much of which has English connections, is a World Heritage Site and is, from many aspects, well-worth a visit. We are always amazed about what the gardeners here can do with cabbages, but you will have to visit to see what we mean.
........and, of course, La Richardière is also looking very lovely at this time of the year. Come and see.......

Travel updates:
We continue to get updates about European travel post-Brexit (if it happens). International driving licences for UK citizens are available at local post offices. Just take along a current photo and your driving licence and for approx £5 an International Licence will be issued while you wait. To keep up-to-date we invite you to visit the travel page of our blog. The latest information we have is that the United Kingdom has been added to France's Visa waiver programme, so, for the time being, and post-Brexit, no Visas will be needed when travelling to France for visits of up to 90 days. At the time of publishing this newsletter, there are no changes to any travel regulations.

We would be grateful if you would forward this news letter to any of your family or friends who might be interested in stay here at La Richardière.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

Friday, 5 April 2019

April 2019 Newsletter.

News from Gites de La Richardière: April 2019.

Our season has started and we are imminently expecting the first guests of the season to arrive for their Easter holiday. It's amazing how quickly the "Winter" has passed and how, suddenly, we are back to the weekly round of gardening, swimming pool management and preparing Gites for new guests.

         We recently took some time out and visited the town of Richelieu (50 minutes West from our Gites.) It is famous for being the home of the infamous Cardinal Richelieu c.1640 He had a magnificent Chateau built which was lived in by him and his successors until it was unceremoniously dismantled about 150 years ago. All that remains now is a lovely park and an interesting central square in the town which hosts a market every Friday. 

There are several museums and galleries to visit and in one we found an excellent scale model of the Chateau which gives a very good impression of the grandeur of the buildings.
We were pleased to meet Tommy Barnes at the Richelieu market. He is an Englishman who has established a micro-brewery in Braslou, just outside of Richelieu, brewing British style Ales. Quite a brave thing to do in the middle of France and in a region famous for its wines. If you're interested in reading about Tommy's experiences he has written a book called "A Beer in the Loire". It is available as a Kindle book and we can recommend it as it is quite fun to read.



The area around Richelieu has many great places to visit and, together with Chateaus, Restaurants and a visit to Tommy Barnes' brewery, it all makes for a good day out in the Indre-et-Loire.


          We continue to get updates about European travel post-Brexit. To keep up-to-date we invite you to visit the travel page of our blog. The latest information we have is that the United Kingdom has been added to France's Visa waiver programme, so no Visas will be needed when travelling to France for visits of up to 90 days.

         We hope to see you in our part of the world one day soon. In the meantime, we would be grateful if you would forward this news letter to any of your family or friends who might be interested in stay here at La Richardière.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

March 2019 Newsletter

News from Gites de La Richardiere:
 Having just travelled back from the UK where we experienced congested roads, driving rain and snow storms, we were delighted to return to the wide open, relatively traffic free, French roads and clear blue skies and sunshine, which led us to remark about the reason why people come to France for their holidays and what great experiences visitors have when stay here at Gites de La Richardière.
        #bookingdirect is very easy to do through our website. Just check the dates you want on the individual Gite pages, and then click on the book now button to get the best prices. We are already taking bookings for 2020.


       In the sections below, we are restarting our "Places to go and Things to do information" and so every month there will be one or two links to the local attractions in our area of France. If you wish to see more there are several pages on our blog.

Travel News: There are no travel updates from the information we offered in our last newsletter which can be read on our blog. CLICK HERE to read our Travel Update Information which we will update every time we hear something new.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience
P.S. We would be grateful if you would forward this Newsletter to your friends, and/or your family, and encourage them to sign up to our mailing list to keep up-to-date with the developments at Gites de La Richardiere - click here. 

Futuroscope This is a great theme park for families. There are extensive grounds and gardens and 21 Exhibition Pavilions with a wide variety of activities from 360deg rides to magic and illusion shows. There are plenty of places to eat and we recommend staying late for the light shows around the lake. We often have discount vouchers for families staying here, so please ask.

Canoeing on the River Cher.

A river running close to the Loire is the River Cher. It is crossed by the very famous Chenonceau Chateau. A great day out, with opportunities for picnicking and swimming, is to canoe on the Cher passing right underneath the arches of Chenonceau.

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Travel Information Update

Travel Information Updated 09/04/2019


           If you're thinking about travelling to Europe from the United Kingdom this summer, either to stay here at La Richardière or to visit other parts of Europe, you will no doubt be concerned about potential difficulties when crossing borders during this current period of political turmoil. 


May 2019:
If you feel you need to at this time then acquiring an International Driving License may be a good move for British drivers. These can be obtained from a Post Office. All you need (so we are told) is your current British Driving Licence + an up-to-date photograph + Passport for identifiction. The license should be issued while you wait for a fee of £5.50. Check out more details by visiting the Post-Office website.

April 2019: 
* 11th BREXIT Extended to 31st October 2019. Freedom of Travel for UK Citizens remains unchanged.
* 7th The VISA waiver programme has been adopted by the EU. UK Citizens can now travel, up to 90 days, without VISA.
* We have just heard that the French Government are adding the United Kingdom to their VISA waver programme. This means that, if there is a no deal Brexit, short term visitors (less than 90 days) to Europe will not now need a VISA. 

March 2019: We are waiting the outcome of British Parliament voting in the week beginning 11th March: After which, if there is any travel related news, we will update this blog posting.



February 2019: we were pleased to recommend the advice given on the Brittany Ferries Website.

  1.  They recommend checking to see that your passport has at least 6 months left to run.
  2.  Also, they say that it is unlikely that you will need a Visa for short trips of less than 90 days.
January 2019 we directed you to a French - English language, newspaper called The Connexion where you will find some information about travel, post Brexit, this summer. which gave advice for travellers should there be a No-deal Brexit situation. 

Outside Europe:
                             If travelling from outside Europe then we guess the normal rules will apply for you and advice should be sought from each individual country's official travel advice. 

2019 February Newsletter

News from Gites de La Richardière
If you haven't visited our Blog yet then please do. CLICK HERE. We have collected together a number of pages which we hope will give our visitors a flavour of visiting this area of France. There are pages about Places to visit; A short introduction to Gites de La Richardière which is very useful for sending to friends; 20 great reasons to stay at La Richardière; some older v new pictures of our Gites - to name but 3 pages. Let us know if you have visited by leaving a comment at the end of the blog posting.

If you're thinking about travelling to Europe for this summer, either to stay here at La Richardière or to visit other parts of Europe, you will no doubt be concerned about potential difficulties when crossing borders during this current period of political turmoil. Last month we directed you to a French - English language newspaper which gave advice for travellers should there be a No-deal Brexit situation. This month we're pleased to recommend the advice give on the Brittany Ferries Website. They recommend checking to see that your passport has at least 6 months left to run. Also, they say that it is unlikely that you will need a Visa for short trips of less than 90 days. You can also visit the British Government advice on travel after Brexit.  If you are travelling from outside Europe then we guess the normal rules will apply for you. We will keep everyone informed as things develop.

WEDNESDAY 6th FEBRUARY was international BOOK DIRECT Day.  Interestingly, the BBC chose to feature an article about how on-line travel agents such as Trivago and Booking Dot Com show incorrect pricing for many properties and encourage people to book with questionable statistics (their words, not mine), so, you can appreciate why we strongly recommend all guests to book direct with their holiday provider. In this way you (the holiday maker) will pay considerably less and the holiday provider will receive more of the advertised price of the holiday thus allowing them to invest in your holiday location for your benefit. Please support #BOOKDIRECT Day. We have written more about this on our BLOG.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience
P.S. We would be grateful if you would forward this Newsletter to your friends, and/or your family, and encourage them to sign up to our mailing list to keep up-to-date with the developments at Gites de La Richardiere - click here. 

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

2019 #BOOKDIRECT DAY - February 6th

BOOK DIRECT  and SAVE MONEY


Dear Holidaymakers and Vacationers,


        Did you realise that when you book a holiday with an on-line travel agent (OTA) you are paying far more than you need to. Often OTAs charge people a booking fee, which can be as much as 12%. Holidaymakers are, therefore, not getting the best price. In fact, no-one is except the on-line agents.

          As an example, on a £600 rental fee for a week's in a holiday property, a booking fee could be an additional £72. That's the equivalent of a tank of petrol, or a meal out in a family restaurant. When you add the amount of commission charged by the OTA to the property owner, there could be as much as £150 discrepancy between the money paid by the Holidaymaker and the money received by the owner. 

          Property owners need this money to invest in their properties for the benefit of their guests who, in turn, need this money to spend on their holiday.

         It therefore makes sense to #BOOKDIRECT with the Gite owner; the hotel; the campsite; or the Chambres D’hôte/B&B.

We suggest the following 5 steps:

1. Search the Internet wisely to search for your preferred holiday accommodation
2. Locate the home website of your holiday location - Google is probably your best bet for this search as many Holiday-Lets and B&Bs are registered Google businesses
3. Bookdirect through the owner's website to get the best price
4. Communicate with the owners by email or phone and find out more about what is on offer at your desired location and if there are any other discount offers available once the gust has booked. As an example - guests booking with us are given a special code to gain a 20% discount on a Brittany Ferries crossing of the English Channel.
5. Save money!

SEARCH - LOCATE - BOOKDIRECT - COMMUNICATE - SAVE

Good luck and enjoy the extra holiday cash in your pocket!


Sunday, 13 January 2019

2019 January Newsletter

News from Gites de La Richardière
Happy New Year. We hope you had a good seasonal celebration. Bonne Année, Meilleur voeux and
Bonne Santé as our French neighbours would say.

It's a strange thing writing about our Gites here at La Richardière in the middle of January as, "What is there to write about?" Our lovely grounds are in their winter plumage i.e. dead leaves and fallen branches and they are not the tranquil colourful gardens we advertise for the summer. Yet they have their own winter beauty. Rest assured, we are working hard to undertake the winter gardening activities so that when our guests arrive through the summer we'll be back to our usual "Shangri-la" impression in the gardens and will have restored the tranquil environment around our swimming pool.

Like many people, we are waiting to see what effect Brexit will have for people travelling to France, or anywhere in Europe, this summer. The French have made changes in their law to accommodate the proposed new situation. Whether you are staying with us (and many of you are), or planning on visiting another part of Europe, you may wish to visit the website of a French, English language, newspaper called The Connexion where you will find some information about travel, post Brexit, this summer. We currently expect "short stays" of less than 90 days to be Visa free and current driving licences to be valid in the same way. There may be some changes regarding the movement of family pets.

Once again, at Christmas time, we visited the Chateau at Chenonceau to see the beautiful Christmas decorations. It is amazing how much effort the managers and guardians of the Chateau go to to make their seasonal displays. We were particularly taken with this decorated dining table which was 100 meters long and had, probably, 20,000 artificial silver macaroons.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience
P.S. We would be grateful if you would forward this Newsletter to your friends, and/or your family, and encourage them to sign up to our mailing list to keep up-to-date with the developments at Gites de La Richardiere - click here. 

Friday, 21 December 2018

December 2018 Newsletter

December 2018 News from Gites de La Richardière
Thank you for receiving our newsletters throughout the year. We hope you enjoy reading about our news.  We are also grateful to those of you who have forwarded our newsletters and information to friends and relatives as this does bring us new business.

We have now concluded the email address and website address survey and it seems that a good proportion of you like our original addresses (info@larichardiere.eu and www.larichardiere.eu ) as they are "what we know" to quote one respondent. So, we'll be carrying on with those through the next year although you might notice the website changes its address a little when you log on to https://www.larichardiere.net as we have added some additional security to the site.

This last weekend has seen the start of Christmas activities in and around La Richardière. We have all our Christmas lights up and each village is resplendent in green foliage, red and gold decorations and many, many lights. It is also Christmas Market Season (Marché de Noël). We attended the market in Ferrière-Larçon at the weekend. It was full of local artisans and producteurs displaying their goods and hoping for a timely sale just before Christmas. Rather than litter this email with photos we have just put one photo and by clicking on that photo you can go to YouTube to see a short slide show if you wish.

Bookings are open for 2019 so please book early to avoid disappointment.

Best wishes for Christmas and 2019,
Dave and Patience

Saturday, 10 November 2018

November 2018 Newsletter

News from Gites de La Richardière
In October we were delighted to have been involved in the widely acclaimed  "L'Art et Lard". arts festival in our local village, Le Petit Pressigny. As members of the village's Fete Committee, we have been involved with the preparations for quite some time. Indeed, recent guests have volunteered to help erect tents and get involved. (No pressure - really!). On the days (Saturday 13th October and Sunday 14th October) Dave provided the Public Address system for the whole event and played music with his band "Celtiqua". Patience baked cakes and helped out in one of the most popular attractions - The English Tea Garden. There were many art exhibits and examples of food and craft from all around the region. It is well worth a visit to our Gites in October if you are interested in Arts and crafts.
    
   
We are delighted to announce that, following a recent inspection by the local Tourist Office in Loches, we have been awarded a classification of 3 stars. The great advantage for our guests is that the tourist Tax rate is reduced from the new 5% rate which begins in January 2019, to a simple 1 Euro per adult, per night. Those who have already booked will be contacted shortly with a revised (lower) price.
Our website and email address survey has been well-supported, but has left us with a dilemma as two particular addresses have been equally popular. Whereas we now know which addresses we won't be using in the future, we are undecided about our way forward and so we have extended the survey. If you haven't had a chance to look, please take a look at this address  
It only takes 40 seconds! We'll keep the survey open until the New Year. Thank you.
Best wishes,
Dave and Patience
P.S. We would be grateful if you would forward this Newsletter to your friends, and/or your family, and encourage them to sign up to our mailing list to keep up-to-date with the developments at Gites de La Richardiere - click here. 

Monday, 8 October 2018

October 2018 Newsletter

October News from Gites de La Richardière
We extend a warm welcome to our new readers. It's always nice to have a new audience for our newsletters, so thank you for signing up. We also welcome feedback and comment (by email or on our blog) and would like to start a new feature where we publish people's memories of their stay here at Gites de La Richardiere. If you would like to, please send us a sentence or two and let us know if we can attribute your text to you, or if you wish to remain anonymous.

The season is all but at an end and what a great season it has been. Our guests have been many and varied, but all have been pleased to spend time at La Richardière enjoying the peace and quiet; the swimming pool and the wide variety of local activities. Little did we expect to be canoeing down the River Cher and under the arches of the famous Chateau at Chenonceau, on 3 separate occasions, following invitations from 3 different sets of guests. We thoroughly enjoyed all 3 trips.   

The Autumn has arrived quickly and it's a good time to undertake some restoration work on our Barn. Those who have followed our Facebook posts will already have seen photos of the big barn wall finished recently. Dave has learned a new technique - "Pierre Apparent" which renders the wall with traditional lime cement and then, with a lot of elbow grease, reveals the stones just below the surface. For those who have stayed in Pigeonnier there is now a very different looking barn opposite the main entrance to the Gite. When it's completely finished we'll post a picture. It's already looking so much better.
    

Thanks to Graham Dopheide for the photos and help with the restoration.

If you are planning to stay with us next year then it would be a good idea to book early as we are receiving many booking enquiries, particularly through August 2019. It is best to #BOOKDIRECT in order to benefit from the best prices.
   
There are two local events happening quite soon. Our village, Le Petit Pressigny is hosting a locally renowned arts festival - "L'Art et Lard" - literally Art and Bacon! There is lots of art, but no bacon. There will be a full report in or November Newsletter. We are also waiting for the dates of the Christmas markets in La Celle Geunand and Ferriere Larçon.

Finally, we are grateful to all those people who have taken time to answer the questions in our survey about our web addresses and email addresses. There is still time to take part by CLICKING HERE to enter the survey

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

Monday, 10 September 2018

September 2018 Newsletter

News from Gites de La Richardière
                           In just over a month we will have said goodbye to our final guests of the season and will be preparing to tidy up for the winter. It's amazing how fast the summer season has whizzed by and how many lovely guests have stayed with us.
                           We continue to find and visit new places in the Loire Valley and this month was no exception. Our trip, last week, was to the Chateau and grounds of the "Domaine de Candé" which is about 10 minutes South of Tours and 50 minutes North West of La Richardière. What a charming and tranquil place. Having been originally built and extended by French owners, it was latterly owned by a Franco/American couple who kindly loaned the property for the marriage, in 1937, of Wallis Simpson and Edward, Duke of Windsor, after his abdication.
These days, one can tour the house and enjoy the excellent information in both French and English and afterwards take one of the woodland walks. There are many interesting and unusual sculptures including a huge Stork's nest which plays music; a nodding dragon; numerous animal sculptures and our favourite, the cocoon hammocks. Children are well catered for with activities both in the Chateau and in the grounds. Well worth a visit. We'll be going back and adding this to our in-house visitors' guide.

                    It's been really hot here during the summer, one of France's hottest summers on record. So, imagine our surprise when we were called to a Gite one evening to find a Gecko sitting on the ceiling. France has Geckos, but usually in the far South where it's extremely hot. Another surprise was the discovery of Bermuda grass growing in our swimming pool area.

In both these cases the same question arises. How did they get there?

Finally, we'd be really grateful if you could help us with a little survey  (2 questions) about our web communications. Please CLICK HERE to enter the survey.



Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

P.S. Please forward this to friends and family and encourage them to sign up to our mailing list and keep up to date with the developments at Gites de La Richardiere - click here. Thank you.

August 2018 Newwletter

News from Gites de La Richardière
Our Gites have been full now for quite a few weeks and will continue to be full until nearly the end of September when we have just  a few available weeks before we close for the winter in the middle of October.

As you can imagine our guests have been out and about visiting local places and taking part in village events.
Quite recently, our village, Le Petit Pressigny, celebrated Bastille day (14th July) with their "Super Bastifete" celebrations. There was a lot of eating and drinking, excellent fireworks and dancing which was much enjoyed by some of our guests who braved village life and attended the celebration.

More guests ventured onto the River Cher, where they canoed, in good quality open canoes, for 12 km (downstream) and paddled under the arches of the Chateau at Chenonceau. There were good opportunities for resting on the shores of the river and taking breaks for a picnic lunch or a swim in the river and even time to get an ice-cream at on of the riverside cafes. 

Dave went with one of our guests, an ex-military chap, to visit the Museum of Maurice Dufresne. Our guest has a life-long interest in second world war activities. At the museum, they saw many WWII machines, cars, tanks and other artefacts, which were extremely interesting and our guest was particularly knowledgeable about the background to these items on display. He was particularly interested in the activities of the "Special Operations Executive" (S.O.E.) who, using Lysander Aircraft , inserted and extracted agents from the French Resistance movement on secret airfields in this area of the Loire. Dave noticed a GPS reference on the sleeve of our guest's polo shirt and asked about it. It was a Loire landing site for a Lysander Aircraft and it was only 5 minutes from where they were. So, off they went to find the Lysander landing site. And find it they did. Dave enjoyed listening to the history of the SOE and how they used these temporary landing sites during WWII. Happy guest and an interesting day for Dave. If anyone is interested in finding out more this video might be a good start.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

P.S. Please forward this to friends and family and encourage them to sign up to our mailing list and keep up to date with the developments at Gites de La Richardiere - click here. Thank you.

Thursday, 5 July 2018

July 2018 Newsletter

Welcome to July's Newsletter from Gites de La Richardière. 

We are delighted that, at last,  the summer has arrived. We've had an excellent couple of weeks of sunshine and temperatures in the high 20's and low 30's with clear blue skies, so, as you can imagine, the swimming pool has been very popular with our guests.

The temperature and dryness has been a great advantage to the local farmers who have been able to start the harvest after a long and worrying wait.

Le Petit Pressigny and Le Grand Pressigny both held "Fete de La Musique" concerts on 21st and 22nd of June. Just as well they were on different nights as we were performing in both events. A great national festival where the whole village turns out to make music. We organised the music in Le Petit Pressigny. The evening started with a classical concert in the church, followed by an open mic session in the church square. This was followed by the chorale "PasseMoiLeSol", a local Clarinet player, a most excellent young female singer called, Zoe Thompson (look out for her in the future), the close harmony group "Entre Nous" and our band "Celtiqua". A great time was had by all. The whole thing was repeated in Grand Pressigny the following evening with other local musicians. 
This last weekend the Annual Wine Festival happened in Le Petit Pressigny.  "Le Salon des Vignerons" invites many local wine producers to bring their wine, which people sample in great quantities, and, of course, buy in great quantities too. The event finished with an outdoor meal catered for by La Promenade, our local Michelin restaurant.

On The 14th July France remembers Bastille day and in our village there is the "Bastifete", an outdoor meal, bar and band followed by a splendid fireworks show.

June and July are certainly the months to be here if you like traditional French village events and wining and dining alfresco.

Best wishes,
Dave and Patience

Monday, 18 June 2018

Gardens at Gites de La Richardière

The Gardens at Gites de La Richardière change and develop every year and sometimes it's just worth taking a moment to sit back and view all the hard work we have undertaken to make the environment as pleasant a place as it can be for our guests. 



We were struck by the contrast between our planted garden, situated here next to our Gite - Le Pigeonnier, and the vastness of the wheat crops in the field adjacent to our land. 


We continue to work to create a secluded environment for our swimming pool area. Even on the breeziest days the pool can be relatively wind free and can seemingly attract the sun.

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Owls at Gites de La Richardière

Owls at Gites de La Richardière:

We were attracted to some strange noises at La Richardière last week. High pitched squeaking up in a tree with a deeper echoing sound from further away. Interested in what could be making the noises and what could be keeping our Gite guests awake, we recorded the sounds and sent the recordings to a local bird enthusiast. The answer came back "Owls" (among other suggestions.)

Sure enough, the following morning, we looked into the tree to see two juvenile Long-Eared Owls just sitting on a branch watching the world go by - at least our Gite guests and us.  

They were completely unperturbed.

The noises at night were the two young birds calling for their parents who dutifully arrived to with food.

Our guests were enthralled, particularly the children, and for 3 or 4 days there was always someone standing quietly at the tree - watching.

The young birds, discovering they could fly, gradually moved from our tree to the larger Oak trees close to our property and have now left the area.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Testing out the Tourist attractions-Chateau Cheverny

It's always good to get out and about in this area of France, namely, the Southern Loire - Touraine-du-Sud, and actually visit the places we recommend to our guests.

Le Chateau Cheverny is one of those places we recommend. It's outside of our 1 hour radius, but we think it's worth it and here's why.

Le Chateau Cheverny
The Chateau is beautifully presented, probably the cleanest and neatest Chateau we have visited. That goes for the outside too where the gardens are well-appointed and full of interesting seasonal displays. It's worth checking the Chateau's website to see what floral displays are current.
The annual "river of Tulips" is a sight to behold. Thousands of plants, all plated by hand, wending their way through the grounds.

Throughout the main house there is currently a display of professionally produced pictures and sculptures made from LEGO! These are superbly crafted and I have to say that, on one occasion, I thought a picture hanging on the wall was an original.



Those of you who remember Herge's adventures of Tintin you may recognise the Chateau Cheverny as it was used as a model for Captain Haddock's ancestral home - Marlinspike Hall. There is a permanent exhibition here at Cheverny and a good way to spend an hour of your visit reliving those outrageous adventures of Tintin. 

The section we liked best was the last photo gallery where the local village people had been photographed and compared to some of the characters in the book. The Thompson Twins were particularly similar in look as was the village Mayor and doctor.



Introductory Post

Summer flowers, Sunsets and Brocantes at Gites de La Richardière. JUNE 2019

Summer flowers, Sunsets and Brocantes at Gites de La Richardière. JUNE 2019 Summer Flowers: We mentioned in our last communication ab...

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