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Exploring the French countryside

 

July 14, 2014

 

Driving to Southern France or to other countries through France can become a long and hard task sometimes. If you can spare a few hours or even a day we'd like to offer you a few suggestions to rest and enjoy the beautiful French countryside.

 

Ferry Ports

 

Calais

Close to the docks in Calais, La Sole Meunière and his chef Didier Routier offer you fresh seafood fished by the hotel's own boat and served in one of the best restaurants in town.

Outside Boulogne you can find La Ferme du Vert. Built about 2 centuries ago, this former farm located in the Cap et Marais d’Opale natural park is now a lovely hotel with 16 distintc bedrooms.

With views to the Channel from all of its bedrooms and the well known chef Alain Delpierre heading its restaurants, the Atlantic Hotel in Wimereux promenade is also one of the best options in the area.

 

Dunkerque (Dunkirk)

Not far from the beach you can find L’Escale Malouine, a home built in the 19th Century and reformed into an elegant and not expensive hotel.

The Château de Tilques is located half way between Calais and Dunkirk, in the market town of Saint-Omer and just outside Tilques where you can hire bycicles or enjoy its giant chessboard or even birdwatching.

 

Caen

Outside Caen, in Calvados country, the magnificent Château des Riffets offers you beautiful views and elegant bedrooms with hot tubs and four-posted beds.

 

Cherbourg

Located on the Cherbourg heights 3 km from the North Cotentin beaches the Manoir de la Fieffe offers a choice stopover for the traveller . This oustanding 16th century mansion is surrounded by a 4 hectare park. It offers a comfortable self-catering cottage and has 2 spacious and clear bedrooms and a suite.

 

St Malo

Recently restored (XVII Century), L’ Accroche Coeur is now a guesthouse with a family suite for 6 and 4 double bedrooms. Their owners will offer you a delicious Breton breakfast including home-made jam.

 

Roscoff

The Hôtel du Centre Chez Janie, at the harbour, offers nautical inspired rooms and panoramic views to the marina from its restaurant.

 

Driving South

 

Le Mans

If you have time to make more than just a stopover, the Domain Le Sablon is a very good option. 15 minutes from Le Mans, this beautiful farmhouse offers his guests magnificient views, a lovely terrace, an indoor pool and outdoor options like horse riding or mountain biking.

 

Tours

In the Loire Valley, just 15 minutes from the centre of Tours but deep enough in the countryside for deers and, in occasions, wild boards from the sorrounding woods to roam into its magnificient gardens. La Cornillière offers its guests a lovely rustic guest suite for 4 people.

 

Limoges

Next to the Limoges golf course, Le Green Saint Lazare has 33 rooms (some with views over the course), a clubhouse and a seasonal restaurant. Ideal for those who want to start their holidays playing a round.

Open from April to October, Moulinard B&B is a converted farmhouse that offers 6 affordable minimalist rooms.

 

Orléans

Near the Brenne National Park, Appletons B&B is located between Limoges and Orléans. This converted farmhouse is ideal for Nature lovers. Ducks and chickens live withing the 2 acres of gardens filled with vegetables and orchards. You can even gather your breakfast eggs!

With patterned wallpapers, picture windows, wooden floors and sunken baths the Hôtel de l’Abeille, in the heart of Orléans, is a family hotel that offers its clients a unique experience.

 

Clermont-Ferrand

In the heart of Auvergne and not for all pockets, the Château de Codignat is a medieval castle with 14 bedrooms and 5 sumptuous suites. 15 acres of natural park with swimming pool, tennis court and a one Michelin star restaurant under the direction of chef Mathieu Barbet.

 

Troyes

In the centre of Troyes, the Relais St Jean is a pet-friendly hotel with 24 modern rooms and views over the medieval city. If you are looking to recharge your own batteries then make sure you take advantage of its hot tub and massage chairs.

 

Author: Paul Quigley