La Poste des Gardes:

"The house is furnished beautifully. From the moment you walk through the door you know you are going to have a wonderful holiday."
Longère Louise:

“Lovely house, lovely stay! 
The location was perfect and the large garden was super for the children. The house is clearly well taken care of."

La Poste des Gardes:

“Beautiful house, perfectly presented, in a wonderful location. Much more than a holiday house - it is an entree into French village life."
Longère Louise:

"The cottage is stunningly beautiful and renovated to a very high standard. 
The gardens are private and totally relaxing."

La Poste des Gardes:

"A relaxing fun holiday in a home away from home. 
Our accommodation this year was the most comfortable and spacious we have experienced."


Longère Louise:

"If you are looking for an oasis of rustic French charm in the depth of the peaceful and rural countryside then this is the destination for you."
La Poste des Gardes:
 
"It was so comfortable that it was difficult to leave. The balcony is a real haven as the breeze from the river flows in and cools the hottest days."

Longère Louise:

"For us the real retreat was the haven just outside the front door, to sit there with all day sun or gain shade from the many plants."

La Poste des Gardes:

"A beautiful and well equipped house. It was superbly clean and had everything we needed at hand to keep a family of five very happy."


Longère Louise:

"Upstairs was a dream, two large romantic bedrooms, extremely comfortable beds/bedding along with the large downstairs bathroom."
La Poste des Gardes:

"From the beginning when you decide to concrete the quality of your holiday with staying at La Poste you will find the whole process seamless." 

Longère Louise:

"The garden is huge with lots to explore. We enjoyed lunch on the south-facing terrace and our evening meal on the west-facing terrace."

La Poste des Gardes:

"We adored the river terrace. It was a delightful start to the day and a relaxing end to the evening as well, after the children went to bed."

Longère Louise:

"An ideal retreat. It is beautifully presented with a super family size kitchen and a delightful garden for the children to play and explore in."

La Poste des Gardes:

"The house is absolutely gorgeous, well equipped and very clean; it catered easily for six adults and a baby.
We will definitely return."

Longère Louise:

"The house itself is in a quiet hamlet with only a few neighbours. You are surrounded by fields of corn and sunflowers. Idyllic!"

La Poste des Gardes:

"Perfect! Right from arriving it was relaxing. The house is comfortable, well equipped and the river terrace was definitely our favourite spot."

Longère Louise:

"Spectacular! A wonderful holiday meeting all my expectations and more. We achieved relaxtion - very rare for a mother of three!"

La Poste des Gardes:

"Availles is wonderful to walk around - all sorts of loops and little tracks present themselves. The village is much larger than it first appears."
Longère Louise:

"Tranquil hamlet, beautiful cottage, spacious garden, perfect stay! A wonderful holiday in a charming cottage. We'd love to do it again"
La Poste des Gardes:

"The house is beautifully located in the town and furnished to the very highest of standards, having everything you would need for a holiday."

Longère Louise:

"Super retreat in the Vienne! Home comforts abound, comfortable beds supplied, kitchen fully equipped. All you need is your food and drink."

French Rental Holidays

Poitou-Charentes Gîtes ... Your Way

Cycling accommodation review: La Poste des Gardes self-catered house, south-west France

Jacqui Brown reviews La Poste des Gardes, a historic cyclist-friendly house on the River Vienne in south-west France

 

 

La Poste des Gardes is a three-story village house, sleeping six, situated in Availles-Limouzine in the Vienne department. The village and the house are both steeped in history as Availles-Limouzine was the site of an important river crossing point on the salt traders route and the house still has the old stone window seats that gave the guards a clear view of the River Vienne.

 

Five things we liked

1) Location: Availles-Limouzine is a beautiful village on the River Vienne that still retains its ancient gateways in the old part of the village where the house is located. All the village amenities, including bar, restaurant, butcher, bakery and general store are within easy walking distance of the property, with the benefit of it being situated on a quiet back street with river views.

 

 

 

2) Great choice for cyclists: Follow the Vienne river downstream for L’Isle Jourdain or upstream for St Germain de Confolens – both places are worth a visit and the scenery on the way is beautiful. Head east towards Blond and Les Monts de Blond and you will find the challenge and excitement of real climbs and switchbacks. Many of the local villages are pretty, including Mortemart, one of the Plus Beaux Villages de France.

3) Welcome pack (below): This exceeded our expectations. We arrived hot and exhausted from an afternoon cycling in Les Monts de Blond and fell gratefully on the packet of peanuts. There was also orange juice, bread, pains aux chocolat, ham, biscuits, milk and wine. It seemed to have been prepared with the weary cyclist in mind.

 

 

4) The roof terrace: For a townhouse with no garden space, the terrace is such a great feature. It is covered, framed with wisteria and with a stunning view of the River Vienne. We dried our cycling clothes, ate our breakfast and dinner out there, and sat late into the night with a glass of wine or two from the welcome pack.

 

 

5) Well equipped: The décor and level of equipment in the house is spot on. It is charming, looks wonderful and there are many interesting features and items to catch your eye, but it is practical too. Towels and bed linen are provided, there is a washing machine and we found everything we needed in the kitchen and utility rooms to cook our meals. The owner, Louise, is happy for bikes to be brought indoors – there is space in the utility room or main living room and we stored ours under the stairs. This was fine for the two of us, but it might be a bit of a squeeze for six people with a bike each. There is also lots of local information provided along with a bicycle pump and puncture repair kit.

 

 

In summary, this well-equipped house had everything we needed to enjoy a relaxed self-catering break in a beautiful part of the Vienne department. The cycling available from here extends into the neighbouring departments of the Charente and the Haute Vienne, and gave us a bit of everything: quiet back roads through pretty villages, river towpaths, chateaux, lakes and mini-mountains. We can highly recommend it.

La Poste des Gardes self-catering accommodation
From £350 per week

17 rue du Chateau
86460 Availles-Limouzine (Vienne, Poitou-Charentes) 
+44 (0)79 7210 5911/ info [AT] frenchrentalholidays [DOT] co [DOT] uk
Official website

ABOUT OUR REVIEWER
Our guest reviewer Jacqui Brown writes French Village Diaries, a blog about life in Poitou-Charentes, cycling, French food, travel, and books.

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