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Self-catering Gîte with 8 bedrooms and 9 bathrooms. Sleeps 20. Non-applicable changeover.
Chateau Ridou is accessed along a 3km private road in the renowned Champagne region of France....
Self-catering Gîte with 14 bedrooms and 14 bathrooms. Sleeps 35. Non-applicable changeover.
The historic Chateau Alois sleeps up to 35 guests and is the ideal place to stay with family and...
Self-catering Gîte with 24 bedrooms and 16 bathrooms. Sleeps 60. Non-applicable changeover.
Château Ridou is accessed along a 3 km private road in the renowned Champagne region of France....
The Ardennes is a large area of extensive forests and rolling countryside reaching across 3 countries, mainly in Belgium and Luxembourg but also stretching into France. The central part of the department is known as the plateau of Argonne.
The Ardennes (department number 08) is located in the region of Champagne-Ardenne and has an estimated population of 290,130 (approximate in 1999). Situated in North-Eastern France, both the Meuse and Aisne rivers flow through it. The capital of the department is the city of Charleville-Mézières, and other towns of note are Sedan, Rethel and Vouziers.
With a diverse terrain, the produce of the area is also diverse. Fruit growing is found in west and also in the centre. Arable farming concentrates mainly on wheat and oats but potatoes, rye and animal feed are also important crops. The banks of the rivers Aisne and Meuse and the plateau of Rocroi in the north are the main areas for livestock and horse rearing is found in the south mainly in Buzancy or in the north in Bourg Fidele. Slate is important and there are also quarries extracting freestone, limestone and other minerals in a number of areas.
Why you should visit Ardennes for your next holiday in France
The Ardennes is the most sparsely populated department of France. The climate is generally mild in the south-west, but is colder and wetter as you reach the north and north-eastern areas. The summers are temperate and the area is a great place for enjoying the outdoors, especially for walkers.
What to see in Ardennes
In 1966 the two towns of Charleville and Mézières were merged together and formed the capital of the department, Charleville-Mézières. Located on the banks of the river Meuse, still retain their own individual identities. Although Charleville is very much the commercial centre it also has much interesting architecture worth looking at, especially in the central square, the Place Ducale. Mézières, is steeped in military history.
Charleville-Mézières is a base for puppeteers as the International Puppet Institute is located in the city. There are regular performances. In one of the squares, of interest to the British, the Place Winston Churchill there is a strange curtain covered clock – each hour the curtain opens and puppets emerge to perform. For those interested in the history there is a marionettes museum.
Sedan is probably best known for its castle which claims to the largest fortified medieval castle in Europe. The chateau was built during the 15th to 16th centuries. Around Sedan there is also an artificial lake which has been created for water activities including swimming.
Rethel is a market town and has a regular Monday cattle market which brings in farmers from all over the area.
Vouziers is on the river Aisne and a branch of the Canal des Ardennes. The town is picturesque and the Aisne valley and flood plains are an interesting ecological area.
How to get to Ardennes
The nearest airport is in Belgium, in Brussels but there is also an airport at Riems which receives international flights.
The best ferry ports to use for this area are Calais, Dunkirk or Dieppe.
There are some TGV connections to the area but a car is recommended.