Day Trips: Charente

Cognac Leyrat
Estate specialising in the manufacture of fine cognac and offering tours. Also selling pineaux. At Claix (16). Contacts: Thomas Lafleche or Simon Palmer
Courvoisier Cognac
Known as the cognac of Napoleon. Part of the British Allied Domecq group since 1986. Organised tours, a multimedia audiovisual, and a self service shop. At Jarnac (16)
Eglise Souterraine St-Jean
Underground church carved into the rock in the 12th Century by Benedictine monks. At Aubeterre-sur-Dronne (16).
The Enchanted Hill
Wild life park near Confolons. Yaks, skunks and wallabies are amongst the species to be found in this 11 hectare park. Open April to October 14.00-18.00. July and August 10.00-20.00. At Hiesse.
Chateau Chesnel
Cognac producer offering a tour and tasting. At Cherves Richemount (16).
Around the Oak
The Brothers Moine, wine-growers and distillers, take visitors to the "Cleaver of Timber" who splits oak trunks down into staves in the way of his forebears. Then, through the magic of fire, visitors share in the making of a barrel. Jarnac, 16.
Cognac Martell
The oldest brand of Cognac and Pineau des Charentes. Martell organises guided tours on their premises in Cognac. Part of the Pernod Ricard Group.
Safari Parc de Haute-Saintonge
Take a 4X4 trip through the woods and see various species of animals, two hour tours, open May to September. At Relais de Buissonnet, Guizengeard (16). Contact Xavier Benoit du Fey
Moulin Neuf dEchoisy, Cellettes , Old Flour Mill
Abandonned for a very long time, this ancient flour mill is now completley restored and working, producing flour for bread and pizza. Open most days, telephone to confirm .
The Little Train
Tour of Cognac (16) by train departing from the quais de la Charente every every 45 minutes from 10:00-18:00 between June and October. Commentary is in French and English.
Medieval Garden - Dignac
Vast garden, home to "magic" plants from a by-gone era. Also herbal plants and aromatic plants and plants from around the world. Open all year.
Chassenon Roman Baths
One of the best preserved Gallo-Roman sites in Europe. Open every day.
Hennessy Cognac
Founded by Richard Hennessy in 1765, with original cellars on the North bank of the Charente at Cognac (16). Now part of the LVMH group. Historical tours, gift shop.
A day at the Grape Harvest
Passionate Cognac makers from Grande Champagne are willing to share their passion and their pleasure. Together enjoy traditional breakfast, and spend a half day hand picking grapes the traditional way. At St Preuil, (16).
River Barge Tour
The "Dame Jeanne" cruises the waters at Cognac, contact for various trips and times.
Otard Chateau de Cognac
Francois the 1st was born in this castle situated in Cognac (16) in 1494. Cognac tastings and visits of the castle are offered.
Remy Martin
One of the most well known makers of Cognac in the Charentes. Tours every day from April to October at Domaine de Merpins, Cognac (16). Free entry for under 12s .
Cognac Charpentron
Family run estate offering tours and tasting. Located in 32 hectares of vineyards at Gondville (16) near to Jarnac. Shop selling local red and white wines, rose, Pineau and Cognac.