Experience living in a 19th-century chateau in Charente Maritime, South West France

  • France
  • Favourited 96 times
  • Last activity: 18 Feb 2023



 Min stay requested: No minimum



  • Description


    We are a couple in our 50's, who have been living in France for four years in a chateau which had been uninhabited for 40 years. Situated in the South West of France, surrounded by beautiful countryside but only 10 minutes drive from the lovely ancient town of Saintes and 30 mins from the coast . The area is very peaceful and a real rural retreat.We have 3 hectares of gardens, meadow and woods. We currenty have 7 hens and six sheep. After what has happened over the last 2 years we are keen to become as self sufficient as possible, growing our own food (we have a vegetable garden and many fruit trees) and breeding chickens and ducks. Using solar and wind power is also something we are beginning to explore.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Animal Care
    General Maintenance
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    The experience of living in a French chateau in the beautiful French countryside. The opportunity to assist in all different types of tasks . We are not remote and so there are lots of interesting places to visit close by including Saintes with its Roman ampitheatre and history. If you want to learn French we have plenty of French friends and this area has relatively few English speaking residents. There will be opportunities to get involved in French life in the local community. The evening meals are often spent debating the worlds issues over a glass or two of wine.

  • Help


    There is much to do in the grounds of the chateau from general cutting and clearing to landscaping. There are numerous old stone buildings within the grounds that are in various states of disrepair which need a bit of attention. We have a large vegetable garden which we are still establishing, so plenty to do there. If you know anything about breeding chickens or ducks then we would be interested in any advice you might have.

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    French: Beginner

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    You can contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    A large room in the chateau with shared bathroom facilities. Good fresh food, eaten together in the large kitchen or al fresco. Not forgetting to mention plenty of free range eggs from our own hens.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    The chateau is situated close to walking trails which pass through farmland and woodlands inhabited by wild deer and boar. We are close to the River Charente where you can kayak, hire boats or swim, which is very popular in the summer. There is an equestrian centre close by and a lovely golf course a short distance away. There are lots of markets to visit in the historic Roman town of Saintes. A lazy day can be spent on the beautiful beach at Royan or for something a bit more energetic a visit to the theme park or explore Crazannes with its stone sculptures and guided tours.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Host ref number: 182319347514

Feedback (5)


These are extra optional ratings when members leave feedback. The average rating left for each option is displayed.

Accuracy of profile: (4.6)

Cultural exchange: (4.4)

Communication: (4.6)