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Cycling the Charente Maritime Coastline in France

As frequent followers of our site will know… we’ve fallen in love with France’s Charente Maritime… a never ending series of coastal marshes, fields of sunflowers and symmetrical vineyards that have truly captivated us…

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So returning for the 4th time this year, we’ve decided to bike along the full stretch from Meschers through Talmont to Montagne sur Gironde. Using the cycle routes from the Charente Maritime tourism board, we trundled along the ‘le canal des mer à veto‘… a route lined with stunning coastline scenery….. but we hadn’t expected some of the amazing sites enroute…

 

The monolithic cave just outside Montagne sur Gironde is one that has to be seen to be believed…. an ‘Ermitage Monolithe‘. A cave for travellers including monks heading south on the ‘Camino’ towards the Santiago de Compostela…this cave is set high into the limestone cliffs and has been dug out over many years to now include a series of internal rooms and a truly impressive chapel that plays with the laws of science… well at least the laws of light refraction… a brilliant opportunity for the girls to learn in a fantastic setting..

 

The harbourside setting of Mortagne sur Gironde is worth the cycle too… a working boatyards surrounded by wonderful artwork and a treelined habourside with wonderful eateries (opposite the motorhome aire)… Perfect to celebrate Lottie’s unbelievable success as we heard she won a national photography competition – see here for more

 

Every region should have Something special

Perhaps the most stunning part of the ride was from Meschers over the cliffs towards the pretty village of Talmont…. followed by a trip through the Talmondais vineyards to learn exactly how vineyards are created… both girls loved the chance to see the fantastic information barrels that contained excellent descriptions of the process of making wine… September is apparently the time to pick… and it was jam packed full of dark red grapes… it looks like a bumper crop this year!!

 

Moving back towards Talmont, we took the chance to celebrate ‘Granny’s’ birthday with an evening treat (a french crepe) in this wonderful village, a walk between the carrelets/fishing huts that are so well used in this area… before finishing up at one of the local artisan producers…. allowing us the chance to get a bespoke neck glaze ‘birthday present’ for a very special lady!

 

Talmont sur Gironde

so where did we park the bus for the night?

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About The Author

Richard

Ever wanted to pack your bags, just jump in a motorhome and go off and explore Europe as a family? Well, that’s exactly what my family has done since September 2015. Visiting 35 European countries, travelling over 54,000 miles and grabbing over 450 family experiences on the way… enjoying Bobsleigh in Norway, Climbing into Mt Etna in Sicily or Kayaking the River Dordogne.

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