One week to discover the renowned patrimony of Anjou : its Châteaux and gardens.

Admire typical villages, châteaux and gardens along the banks of the Sarthe river. A peaceful journey revealing all of this land’s beauty. A “Natura 2000” zone of the low Anjou valley will bring you many bird species to look for …

1st day :

Arrival on Monday at 2PM : boarding and training on your boat.
After 30 minutes of navigation : go through your first lock near Solesmes.

 

 Solesmes

Navigation : 30min

Do not miss a visit of this stunning abbaye, renowned for its altarpieces and gregorian singings that you can here regularely and everyday.

To enjoy a panoramic view on this abbey, get higher up to Notre Dame du Nid’s chapel ! You can reach it from the main road of Port de Juigné accross the abbey.

The word of Bernard : do you know the secret of the scultpure that gave its name to this chapel ? By carving the wood, the artist found a node shaped like an egg. He kept it and sculpted its piece around this feature !

Juigné sur Sarthe

Navigation : 10 min

Lovely little village hangingon top of a hill along the Sarthe’s Valley. Charming walks to do around the village to enjoy the old and preserved architecture ; thanks to the inhabitants’ work.

2nd day :

Avoise

Navigation : 1h30

Apart from its old vintage caravans (come have a refreshment in there !), Avoise is a good starting point for a walk or a bike ride toward the medieval village of Asnières Sur Vègre (4 kilometers).

In this small typical village along the Vègre, do not miss the Manoir de la Cour and its story of the valley, the wall paintings of the Saint Hilaire Church or the Mosaïque Garden on the top of the village. Wander in the old streets of yellow stones and enjoy the picnic and play areas on the banks of the Vègre river.

Guillaume’s advice : ask Khady or Philippe to guide you through the garden, they will teach you the secret of this harmonious and ecological space !

Parcé sur Sarthe

Navigation : 30 min

Parcé is another soothing typical village, directly on the Sarthe river this time ; allowing an easy visit of this little city built around its church.

From your boat, do not miss the view on the Château de Pecheseul.

Dureil

Navigation : 1h

Nice deck settled in nature, in this tiny village hidden in the forest.

Malicorne

Navigation : 50 min

City of Art and History, always full of life !Get a glimpse on the castle, push the door of the old mill that is now hosting an exibit for local artists. 
By the way, Malicorne is primarily famous for its art ceramics !
You can shop some at “Les Faïenceries d’Art” but most importantly do not miss the Museum ! Learn the history and process of this demanding form of art and try your talent at the Barbotine space where everyone can experience the clay molding !

3rd day :

Turn around, let’s go to Angers !

Pincé Sur Sarthe

Navigation : 6h

Small village and a perfect place for a stop to stretch your legs after your day of navigation !

For golf lovers, you will find halfway the Golf of Sablé-Solesmes, one of the most beautiful courses of France with its 27 holes (direct access from the river) !

4th day :

Morannes

Navigation : 1h15

The old village of Morannes is a good place for re-stocking ! Bakery, butcher, general store are available.
Take the time to get a glimpse inside the Boule de Fort‘s society (the only sport that you play in slippers !)
If you don’t wanna cook, go grab a meal at the Port Saint Aubin’s inn, build inside an old chapel !

Brissarthe

Navigation : 1h

In this little bucolic village of Maine-et-Loire county, let the magic of the streets  and the dremay borders of the river cast a spell on you. Why not try a pétanque game under the oaks, a game as easy as it is frenchy, and pleasant too ! Do not miss a visit of the XIIth century church before leaving !

Châteauneuf-sur-Sarthe

Navigation : 45min

After going through the decorated and flowered lock, why not make a stop at the marina to visit the river’s museum ? You will learn how the Sarthe managed to developp thanks to the river.
For the gourmands (like us !), you can make a little detour down to Mathez Chocolate Factory and most importantly … taste its famous truffels !

Juvardeil

Navigation : 20min

This little village was  famous during  the XIXth century for the building of gabares that would be up to 30 meters long.
Enjoy the finished borders of the river, a nice place to take the time to live fully your holidays.

Cheffes 

Navigation : 1h

Look up to the church and resolve the enigma of the twisted bell tower !
If you are willing to take a walk, we strongly advise a little detour to visit the Castle of Plessis-Bourré, one of the few castles that kept its outside beauty and furnitures (around 30 min by bike, 1h+ by foot).

plessis bourré chateau angers anjou bateau sans permis navigation

5 ème Jour :

Emilie’s advice : Leave early, there is no lock before Angers, that way you will be able to enjoy this city without hurrying !

Briollay

Navigation : 1h

You are now in the heart of a Natura 2000 area, keep your camera and binoculars at hand !
Go take a walk inside the Jardin des Fruits Rouges to gather red edible berries. Do not miss “l’Arrêt Public”, a typical river restaurant settled inside an old Boule de Fort house, where many musicians come regulary to give shows !

Ecouflant

Navigation : 40min

Take a walk to the Sablières. It is a resting place where pines and sand lie around a pond : the perfect place to experience “la douceur angevine” as the locals say (a peacefull and slow state of mind, as the weather and the wine of the region). Bathing, fishing, farniente on the beach, games for children and even adventure park : there is something for every crew !

Angers

Navigation : 50min

A magnificent castle, museums, many events all year long, shops and restaurants, come discover this old city that successfully mixed its historical patrimony with a young and upbeating town center. Moor in front of the castle, the perfect starting point for your visit !

Not to miss : the visit of the castle and the renowned Tapestries of the Apocalypse, the Saint Maurice cathedral, Saint Martin collegiate and the David d’Angers museum.

Another “green” option : moor near the ferry that crosses the Mayenne river to reach Saint Aubin Island (do not miss the restaurant that prepares “fouées” : a local specialty !). On the western bank you can walk up to Terra Botanica : a 40 ha parc dedicated to botanic, garden and everything around the vegetal. Everyone loves it !

Christian’s advice : go spend the night at Écouflant, you will be closer for the return trip and in a quieter place to sleep !

 

6th and 7th day :

Jean François’s advice : this guide is subjective regarding time and visits : keep a few things to do on the way BACK !

Heading back to Sablé ! We will wait for you at 9AM for the key return ; we are eager to hear how was your journey !

You are totally free on your journey’s way. Choose your visits and stopovers as you please.

Kevin’s advice : the Sarthe river is known for fishing, don’t forget your “holiday” fishing licence !

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