Charroux is a small medieval town in the southern borders of Vienne, about 25 minutes drive from Vanzay. This ancient town is notable for the large 8th century Benedictine Abbaye du Saint Sauveur, whose lantern tower, known as the Charlemagne Tower built in the 11th century, has survived destruction over the centuries of wars. The Abbey’s main contribution to history was made in the 10th century when the Council of Charroux declared the “Truce of God”, the earliest known attempt to regulate war in the manner of the Geneva Convention.
Many guests drive themselves and their families down to stay with us here at La Ferme de l’Eglise and for many, the easiest and quickest route over the channel is the ferry. Inevitably, the ferry fare can end up being a bigger chunk of holiday fund than you’d want and so we have looked at what we can do to secure cheaper ferry fares for our guests.
Melle is a busy small town about 25 minutes drive from Vanzay. Melle was founded in the reign of Charlemagne as a mining centre and was, for a time, the home of the French mint, although silver had been mined there by the Romans. By way of a celeb connection, it is said to be the home of Ségolène Royal, although I haven’t seen her at the Friday morning market! As part of a series of posts exploring the medieval history of Poitou-Charentes, we travel to Melle to visit two of its three Romanesque churches and to enjoy some lunch.
Poitou-Charentes has had a turbulent history that has left a rich cultural and architectural heritage. This heritage is best represented by the numerous churches, many of which are Romanesque and served pilgrims on the route to Santiago de Compostela. Over a series of posts, we report on visits to some of these churches in our region.
Of course there are plenty of reasons to take a holiday in France at any time, but right now there are five particularly good reasons why a holiday in France makes perfect sense.