The Gite is located near Ruffec which is half way between Poitiers (the well-known Futuroscope amusement park is 45 minutes away) and Angouleme (with its famous cathedral and the 'round the ramparts' race in September is 35 minutes).
Bordeaux with its UNESCO site buildings, two cathedrals, shopping centres, restaurants and parks is 90 minutes. La Rochelle and its famous old harbour, renowned aquarium and dolphinarium as well as the harbour side restaurants, is also 90 minutes away. Both are well worth visiting for a day out. If visiting La Rochelle also give consideration to crossing the bridge to the Isle de Re and view the oyster beds and intertidal mussel growing areas as well as the lighthouse.
If you appreciate the traditional French Village, there are two 'reserved' villages within 15 minutes, one with a large Chateau, which are attractive and restful being beside the River Charente. Both have restaurants popular with locals.
Most local towns and villages have farmers’ markets with the ones at Lezay (30 minutes) and Rouillac (40 minutes) being particularly large and popular. Being only 90 minutes from the sea means that sea food is readily available, fresh and relatively inexpensive. Try Oysters and Mussels in particular when in season. Half a dozen Oysters, with squeezed lemon on a bed of ice together with a local wine, is a favourite way of enjoying this part of France.
For those seeking to sample French Cuisine there are good restaurants in the local area as well as Angouleme, La Rochelle and Bordeaux. The owners will be pleased to advise. There is a helpful Tourist Office in Ruffec with English speaking staff.
Fishing is possible in the River Charente in Ruffec and elsewhere along the river. Kayaking and Canoeing is also possible in Ruffec and Mansle (15 mins south on N 10). There is a supervised swimming area in Ruffec (with Lifeguard) by the river and other bathing areas beside lakes at Villefagnan and Echoisy, both around 10 – 15 mins. The Valley of the Monkeys, a well know attraction, is about 20 mins. There is also a golf course within easy driving distance (no pun intended!).