Moors, apple-tree orchards, schist-wall houses with slated roofs
The landscape of the Haut-Anjou around Segré is very much like the one in its sister province Brittany.
Above all, it is the land of navigable rivers, outdoor washing-places, schist mines, gardens, castles and thoroughbred horses.
The “Mine Bleue” : a unique attraction in Europe. Take a ride 126 metres underground and experience life as a miner at the beginning of the 20th century.
The botanical attraction park Terra Botanica in Angers shows all the best of our countryside and it is worth a visit www.terrabotanica.fr
The “petite Couère” in Nyoiseau is the perfect family outing. With its 19th century village, its old merry-go-rounds and its vintage tractor and car museum, it will delight children and parents alike !
Anjou, a land of many rivers
From its old shipping activities, the Anjou province has preserved a navigable network which is among one of the nicest in France; the rivers Sarthe, Mayenne and Oudon are teeming with fish.
Several places (Grez-Neuville, Chenillé-Changé, Châteauneuf-sur-Sarthe) offer licence-free boats to rent for one day or for mini-cruises with the excitement of passing through locks and enjoying towing demonstrations. www.anjou-navigation.com et www.maine-anjou-rivieres.com
There are many small lakes near Candé, in Combrée, Noyant-la-Gravoyère, as well as a sailing school in Pouancé.
Bird-watching along the dike known as ‘la grande levée’ and the sandy banks of the River Loire. Information at the Tourist Information Office in Angers. Tel: 02 41 23 50 00 – www.angers-tourisme.com
The Loire Valley, a site of outstanding beauty, has been selected as part of the UNESCO World Heritage.
Anjou, a land of castles and châteaux
The Anjou province is home to more than 1,200 castles and châteaux.
The Brissac Castle (17th c), ‘The Giant of the Loire valley’, standing higher than all other royal castles, and the impressive seventeen-tower fortress of the early Middle-Ages in Angers.
Not far away, the elegant architecture of the Plessis-Bourré Castle and its splendid decorated ceilings featuring mysterious alchemical subjects (15th c). The building hosted the shooting of ‘Peau d’Âne’, the famous movie.
The Serrant Castle and its remarkable private furniture collection.
Although less solemn than their counterparts in Touraine, The Anjou castles yield an irresistible charm.
Among our favourite near the Clos des Gibouleraies:
- Château de la Motte-Glain (15th c) at la Chapelle-Glain.
- Château de Raguin at Chazé-sur-Argos, (15th-16th c).
- Château de la Lorie, (17-18th c), Segré
- Neo-gothic château in Challain-la Potherie
The region of Anjou provides a wide range of wines: the dry and semi-dry Savennières wine, the mellow Côteaux du Layon et de l’Aubance, the red, fruity Saumur-Champigny, sparkling crémants and refreshing Anjou Cabernet rosés.
Tastings are available in cooperative wineries and directly at producers’.