Saintes was founded in 20BC and is situated in the beautiful countryside of Charente-Maritime, between La Rochelle and Bordeaux. It is both a cultural and tourist town with a rich heritage, having at one time been the capital of the former province of Saintonge. The nearest airport is La Rochelle.
Saintes has an attractive old town centre dating from Roman times. Roman ruins can be found on the left bank of the River Charente. The Arch of Germanicus dated from the reign of Tiberius, is a triumphal arch built at the entrance to a bridge, which was where the main Roman road crossed the Charente.
Property ranges in price and the area has a range of house types including townhouses and villas and further out farmhouses, mansions and cottages. The town and surrounding areas also make a fantastic place for a holiday; beaches are just a drive away as are charming towns such as Cognac and La Rochelle.
Places worth visiting include the Museo Gallo Roman (Architecture and Heritage Museum) and the Musee de l’Echevinage (paintings of the 19th and 20th centuries). Churches worth a visit are Abbaye aux dames and Church of St Eutrope.
Due to the town’s close proximity to the sea, seafood is both popular and flavoursome, Moules Mariniére is particularly good. Good places to eat include Le Parvis Restaurant, serving excellent seafood, as well as Le Petit Bistro with its delicious simple French cuisine.
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