About The Area
The Gers has a long and colourful history that stretches up through the ages from Roman emperors, Eleanor of Aquitaine, the Hundred Years War, pilgrims on the route of Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle, the Gascon musketeers on up to WW2 Resistance fighters & the SOE.
The nearest chateau of interest is Lavardens (13 mins) which has a delicious restaurant with a shaded terrace in the summer and a night market.
But the whole area is peppered with beautiful old towns, their restaurants, churches, abbeys and chateaux.
The house itself sits in a green valley surrounded by a 22-hectare field (green in summer) with small, quiet country roads around it suitable, if sometimes hilly, for biking.
Jegun is the nearest town 6 kms to the north-east and has the only genuine Irish pub in France run by Michael from Cork. Right opposite is an excellent restaurant - Le Halle (www.restaurantlahalle.fr). Jegun also has a small Casino food store that makes its own baguettes and croissants daily. Down on the D930 below Jegun, Papote & Grignote (see below), a family-run boulangerie is where to go for a range of excellent fresh bread, tartes, pizzas and croques monsieur.
Children can enjoy the water park La Plage de Verduzan just north of Castéra-Verduzan on D42 or further on www.parcagen.fr for serious waterpark or funfair enthusiasts.
There are three golf courses nearby of which Golf d’Auch-Embats (15 mins) is the best. Elsewhere in the area: canoeing, riding, tennis, quad biking, gliding and a star-studded Jazz festival at Marciac in August.
Castéra-Verduzan (10mins) has a small Carrefour which offers an excellent selection of local (and other) wines. Francie has a new best friend, Didier who runs an extraordinary Brocante shop as you head out south back to the house.
Foodwise, the Gers is famous for its foie gras, armagnac and now increasingly for its wines too. All these are no doubt helped by the absence of heavy industry that affords extraordinarily clear star-scapes at night. There are Brits around but the Gers is still comparatively untouched and certainly does not have an English daily newspaper!
It is still unspoilt, rural, old France.