Themes And Sights

Our themed breaks will excite anyone wishing to spend some time in the most wonderful area of France. That's our belief and we have the benefit of 6 years experience indulging in the culture and the French 'joie de vivre'. Just the simple things in life will allow you to recharge those batteries that have been run down and very nearly exhausted. Try our battery charger!

If you are looking for an experience that takes in the great chateaux and landscape of the Loire valley look no further than a break with us. We combine all that are the wonders of the Loire.


Gardening and horticulture

Doue la Fontaine is "the City of Roses" where the Chemin de la Rose gardens has over 1300 varieties. La Maison de la Rose offers delightful products made from roses including scents and oils. Choose from:

-Castle and house garden visits

-Garden festivals

-Rose Gardens

-Horticulture and plant centres



Sample the wonders of the "Cadre Noir" the elite display team in Saumur. The museum of the horse at Saumur Chateau allows you to see the development and history of the equestrian centre. There are magnificent shows and events throughout the year. Choose from:

– Horse display team

– Chateau museum

– Events

– Trekking

– Riding lessons


Art and Sculpture

There are many art galleries and museums reflecting the arts and culture of the area including the unique way in which the sparkling wine houses of Saumur mix art and wine.

– Museum visits

– Art and viniculture

– Chateau visits


Motoring and Military

Saumur is steeped in the history of the military and mechanised transport. Saumur has a tank and military vehicle museum, motor museum and cavalry museum, so be prepared for testing your knowledge on the development of the French army from horse to tank! Choose from:

– Motor museum

– Military vehicle Museum

– Cavalry Museum

– Vintage grand prix



The geology of this area of France is primarily limestone which has been extensively excavated underground to produce the stone for the wonderful buildings from modest dwellings to the great chateaux. The excavations have resulted in a complex underground cave system used as homes and even villages. Many examples can be seen locally. The caves now have different uses. The famous mushroom of the Loire the "Champignon de Paris" is cultivated in abundance in the caves – used in many of our recipes at Manoir de Gourin; and of course, winemakers use the caves to make and store wine at a perfect temperature.

Choose from:

– Sites

– Caves

– Troglodyte villages



There are numerous religious sights which may be of interest; from the largest Abbey complex in Europe at Fontevraud Abbey, to the Church of Notre Dame at Le Puy and the churches of Saumur including Notre Dame des Ardilliers. The tombs of HenryII, Richard the Lionheart and Eleanor of Acquitaine are displayed in the fully restored Fontevraud Abbey whilst The church of Notre Dame at Le Puy is on the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostelais in Portugal and just 2 miles from Manoir de Gourin. Choose from

– Churches and Abbeys

– Visits and services

– Pilgrimage route



You will never tire of the majestic chateaux and gardens strewn along the Loire. Locally we have Chateau Breze known as 'a chateau upon a chateau' due to the underground village beneath the beautiful castle, Montreuil Bellay on the bank of the Thouet river and the tallest chateaux of all at Brissac. Choose from

– Chateau Montreuil Bellay

– Chateau Breze

– Chateau Brissac



The Loire-Anjou-Touraine Regional Nature Park is a designated UNESCO heritage site. It champions the preservation and enhancement of natural heritage. Our guests are able to experience the natural environment.

Choose from:

– Parks

– Wildlife

– Bird watching

– Zoology park



If you are looking for a break to see the many crafts, we are able to arrange visits to a pottery, soap making, basket weaving, wood carving, mosaics, perfumes, silk weaving and many more. Choose from:

– Pottery

– Soap making

– Silk weaving

– Wood carving

– Scents and oils

– Basket weaving

– Mosaics


Activities and Recreation

There are numerous activities and recreations. Horse riding lessons and trekking along the Loire, sailing and canoeing, paragliding and micro-lighting, cycling in the vineyards and walking through the nature park and vineyards. Choose from:

– Paragliding and micro-lighting

– Sailing and canoeing

– Cycling

– Walking

– Fishing