Countryside around La Fosse Chambres d'hôte, Perriers-en-Beauficel. All photographs below were taken within a few minutes of the house. All photographs on this page were taken by us and are not stock images. All photographs copyright Carole & Patrick Head.
Nearby towns are Vire, which is a busy market town (Friday mornings) and which has good restaurants, bars, supermarkets as well as an excellent aqua swimming complex, a racecourse which has frequent meetings, ten-pin bowling and plenty of other activities.
These photographs show the centre of Vire with the clocktower, the edges of the Friday market and le Central bar where you can sit, people watch and sink a well deserved beer or glass of wine. The coffee is good too.
On the outskirts of Vire is la Lac de la Dathée which has walks, sailing and other activities.
Fishing is nearby and there's a golf course too which welcomes day members.
Then there's Avranches - on the coast, overlooking le Mont-St-Michel. It's a lovely town with a real holiday, seaside atmosphere - even though it doesn't have access to beaches from the town. Again, excellent for eating, drinking, shopping... there's a wonderful Saturday market.
Many large towns have a public boules court. Not many are as beautifully located as the one in Avranches - on the left above. Shady trees, muffled shouts of children enjoying themselves and the clink of boules as the very seriously-fought matches progress. There are many old buildings that escaped being totally destroyed after D-Day. For a little of the history of le Mont-St-Michel, Avranches is home to the manuscripts from the Abbey on the Mont which have been entrusted to the town since the French revolution of 1798.
The climb up to the abbey is worth the effort of facing so many steps. The views from the ramparts and particularly the Abbey Cloisters as the sun is setting are incomparable. Go early morning or evening to avoid some of the crowds and if you don't want to walk up the "main street", climb up to the abbey via the various steps and terraces of the ramparts. You can always walk back down the main street and take in some of the fabulous (I jest!) souvenir shops and restaurants - frites with everything. I'm not being dismissive of a visit to le Mont-St-Michel but it's difficult to get much of a sense of history when you're being deafened by pop music from the gift shops.
Avranches market (Saturday mornings) is excellent. It's one of my favourite markets in the area and it's a real treat to go there and finish the morning with either a glass of wine in one of the pavement cafés or we love le Croix d'Or restaurant in the centre of town near Pôle Patton.
And, of course, finish off your investigations with a bière or a coffee at one of the cafés with outdoor seating.
Further up the coast is Magnificent Granville. Well, I think it is magnificent and so do many French people both locally and from Paris who have their maison secondaires there. Great shopping, pedestrian streets with outdoor cafés and restaurants, superb poissonnière (fishmonger) down on the harbour, a casino, Thalassotherapy spa, beaches - both sandy and rocky; there's a great beach accessible from Granville's old town via steep steps which has great rock-pooling opportunities. I should have grown out of rockpools decades ago but I can still spend a worrying amount of time peering into pools and watching the tiny fish, shrimps, crabs... and the larger fish like blennies.
Photos to follow...