The area has been influenced greatly, firstly by the Romans and then by the 100 Years’ War and the Plantagenets – so, there are plenty of sites of interest to visit!
Montmorillon is known as the City of Writers, a book lover’s dream much in the way Hay on Wye is in the UK. La Maison-Dieu is a hospital / monastery founded in the 11th century, with the Octagon (a funeral chapel modelled on the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem) and the Chappelle de St Laurent – both dating back to the 12th century – all of this, soon to be the home of an international culinary school run by Joel Robuchon. A tour of the town, pointing out these and other highlights is available via a booklet and smart little paving stones dotted around – the English translation you will be given was written by the owner of Maisons Rurales! Market day is Wednesday – a great array of fish, vegetables, fruit, bread and much more!
Chauvigny has 5 chateaux situated on a large rocky hill overlooking the town. The highlight is the Chateau des Aigles, a super show of raptors and vultures, eagles and kites – great stuff. The famous Limoges porcelain has a factory outlet on the outskirts – watch out for their “Porcelain by the Kilo” sale! Market day is Saturday – a great morning out.
St Savin is famous for its 12th century abbey, a UNESCO world heritage site since 1983 and now restored to its former glory. The large square in front of the abbey has bars and restaurants and hosts a 3-day Jazz festival each August.
Angles sur Anglin is famous for its enormous firework displays, set off from the ruined 12th century castle overlooking the river Anglin. This is one of the prettiest villages in France and well worth a visit.