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Ian and Elspeth Game welcome you to our charming, stone houses in unspoilt, undiscovered Sarthe to the south of Normandy, in Pays de la Loire.

Four of our houses are situated in the country, yet close to picturesque villages surrounding the medieval town of Fresnay sur Sarthe, which is perched on a rocky buttress overlooking the river Sarthe. Our fifth house is in the town centre. The region is rich in history dating back before Gallo-Roman times and there are many archaeological sites and monuments to visit.

Water mill by fresnay sur sarthe

 



The river Sarthe gives its name to the department. It rushes its way through the spectacular hills and valleys, with rocky scree slopes at St Léonard des Bois and St Céneri le Gérei, in the heart of the Alpes Mancelles. Down to soft, undulating valleys it wends its way through water-mills and the flood plains around Fresnay sur Sarthe. The Alpes Mancelles is a region renowned as one of the finest areas of natural beauty in the west of France.

Fisherman in the Sarthe river

The Sarthe is noted as one of the two rivers in France most abundant in species of fish and is a great centre for angling. Further information is available, on request, for those wishing to try fishing in these tranquil surroundings.

The lake beach and forest of Sillé le Guillaume in summer

Ancient woodlands abound. There is a beautiful, safe swimming beach at Sillé Plage within the national forest of Sillé, where you will find windsurfing, sailing and pedalo hire. Bars and restaurants nestle in the woods surrounding the lake.

Moutain biker in Sillé le Guillaume forest

Why not take a walk in the cool of the forest on a hot sunny day and find a glade for a picnic. Bicycles can be hired here for the superb trails in the forest which vary in length and difficulty. If you are a keen mountain biker, why not test yourself on one of the difficult courses at St Léonard des Bois designed by Laurence Leboucher, the world cross country cycling champion who comes from nearby. There is also pony trekking at St Léonard des Bois and at Sillé le Guillaume. Kayaks may be hired at Fresnay and at St Léonard des Bois.

The famous Bayeux tapistry

Our houses are well situated for visiting the north west of France.
Normandy and Brittany are easily accessible. The landing beaches are only two hours away from this region. Visit Bayeux, with its cathedral and its famous tapestry and enjoy the countryside on your way there. Trips to the Mont Saint Michel or to the beaches in southern Brittany are both very enjoyable days out.
Apart from the unspoilt natural beauty of this area, there is nothing better than its relaxing quietness. Traffic and pollution problems are non-existent. You can unwind completely.

The superb cathedral of Le Mans

Travelling in one direction from Fresnay, Le Mans (25 min) is the cultural centre of the Sarthe. We recommend visiting Vieux Mans, with its historic streets, superb cathedral, Jacobite architecture and cosmopolitan restaurants. Nearby, the commercial centre is excellent for shopping.

The Le Mans 24 hour car race

Perhaps you may wish to make a trip to one of the famous 24 hour races in May, June or July.

The magnificent Château of Chambord at sunset

Why not take a trip to Paris (55 min), Bordeaux or Nantes on the extremely fast TGV train, leaving from Le Mans. Drive past Le Mans and you are quickly in the château and vineyard area of the Loire valley, a very interesting day trip.

Alençon's Halle Aux Blés

Travelling in the other direction from Fresnay, you will find Alençon, (15 min.), the administrative town of the Orne. Its centre remained intact during the fierce battles that were fought here during the last war, despite practically all of the east of the town being flattened. The ancient architecture in the centre, close to the cathedral, is exceptional. There is a golf course on the outskirts of Alençon, at Arçonnay.

The spectacular Pont de Normandie suspension bridge

This area is easily accessible from the channel ports of Cherbourg, (2hrs 45 min.), Caen, (1hr 50 min.), Le Havre, (2hrs 15 min.), Calais, (4hrs 30 min) and Boulogne, (4hrs). Crossing the Pont de Normandie, on your way from Le Havre, is quite spectacular and well worth the 5 euro toll.

Our houses are available all year round. A warm welcome is assured, whether in the summer from the sun on the terraces or in winter from the flames in the wood burners.
We live in Fresnay, in close proximity to all the houses and can be contacted easily.

Fresnay sur Sarthe's heated, outdoor swimming pool

In Fresnay sur Sarthe there is a heated, outdoor swimming pool open in summer, cafés, tennis courts, a skate board park, a cinema, an internet centre, shops, restaurants and a Saturday market.

All our properties are recently restored to the standards of comfort expected today yet retaining the charm of the past. These stone houses date back to Napoleonic times and their extremely thick walls keep them warm in winter and cool in summer. They all have private gardens and terraces with barbeques, with the exception of Place du Château, which is a town house with the delightful Chateau gardens just across the medieval square.

All our shower rooms and bathrooms are fitted to modern high standards. All our kitchens are fully fitted and are equipped with double oven, ceramic hob, microwave, dishwasher, fridge and freezer. Each property has a wood burner, electric radiators, washing machine, television, DVD player and music centre.
Duvets, pillows and tea towels are provided. Visitors should provide their own towels, sheets, pillowcases, duvet covers and bath mats. We hire bed linen (not towels or bath mats), if required. Please see our tariff and booking form.

We look forward to hearing from you !