The Charente department is crossed from east to west by the Charente river which gave it its name. It borders the Dordogne, Charente-Maritime, Vienne and Haute-Vienne. This hilly territory, covered with small towns and villages, is mainly marked in the west by the presence of vines that stretch as far as the eye can see like an ocean. They produce pineau and above all a flagship of French heritage, the world-famous cognac. Some names of municipalities resonate for their specificity: Cognac of course for its brandy and its great cognac houses, Jarnac, the birthplace of François Mitterrand, Aubeterre-sur-Dronne, one of the most beautiful villages in France (the only one in Charente) for its underground church, Angoulême has become the world capital of images thanks to its comic book festival and the Magelis Pole, the Cassinomagus archaeological park and its well-preserved Gallo-Roman baths, and the Rochefoucauld castle, undoubtedly one of the most beautiful Renaissance-style castles in France. The Charente offers many possibilities for canoeing, kayaking, gabare, boat trips or houseboats. You can also walk or cycle along the river on a 20 km old towpath between Saint-Yrieix-sur-Charente and Ners. The department is a gourmet destination where you can take the time to dine around Charentais melons, snails called cagouilles, Chalais veal or Barbezieux capon. Tourist guides indicate good little tables to enjoy all these products

The must-see places in Charente

When to go to Charente?

When to leave? The Charente is not yet a very tourist destination despite the richness of its heritage and its proximity to Paris by high-speed train (1h40 on average between Paris and Angouleme), so the prices between low and high season do not vary much, except for the train, especially during school holidays. All the periods of the year make it possible to discover this department with a fairly temperate climate, summer being more favourable to walks on the water and hikes in the nature. Some sites often close from October to April but the large cognac houses open their doors almost all year round, as do the small producers. On the other hand, it is preferable not to visit them during the harvest (late September/early October) because they are very busy. Festivals are held throughout the year in Charente. Some of them revolve around cognac, such as the Distillerie en fête in Cognac between December, January and February, the Fête du cognac at the end of July and the Mardis du cognac from June to September. The entire planet BD meets in Angoulême at the end of January for the International Comic Strip Festival, which always welcomes star authors. Two fairs are important in Charente: those of Cognac which is held on the 2nd Saturday of the month from 8am to 6pm and above all the Rouillac fair, a descendant of an ancient Gallo-Roman horse market. It takes place on the 27th of each month in a very festive atmosphere with many local producers.

Prepare for your trip Charente

Transportation
  • Book a ferry
  • Car Rental
  • Taxi
Accommodations
  • Find a hotel
  • Holiday rental
  • Airbnb rental
Stays
  • Tailor-made trip
Services / On site
  • Book a table
  • Activities & visits

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The Charente benefits from mild weather thanks to its oceanic climate. This destination experiences relatively mild a...
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