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Chateaux, leafy boulevards and a sea of vineyards…

If you have ever dreamt of a classic French town, with wide, shaded boulevards, welcoming, aromatic bistros, a market square, a river or two, and a landscape that shimmers with a thousand vineyards bursting with sweet, purple grapes and overlooked by magnificent chateaux, then the town of Libourne, in south-west France could be the town of your dream.

Charm and elegance

The capital of the Gironde wine trade, Libourne lies on the confluence of the Rivers Isle and Dordogne, and is a bastide town of considerable charm and elegance. Large houses, made of mellow local sandstone, line the wide boulevards with a grandeur that speaks of past, as well as present, wealth and importance. Many of the houses in the town appear to be Art Nouveau in style, but in fact they date from the eighteenth century. Libourne was built as a bastide town, and although some of its fortifications have suffered over time, some can still be seen today.

Perfect town planning

Like many bastide towns, Libourne displays immaculate town planning. The central market square, Abel Surchamps, is surrounded by four arcades, each having imposing arches of exactly equal size and splendour. Within these arches are found the shops, and the whole makes a most pleasing picture, architecturally and aesthetically.

Excellent shopping

Shopping in the town is excellent, with all types and sizes of shops and supermarkets. All other amenities are easily found in or near to Libourne, with doctors, dentists, and schools close at hand.

A place to eat…

The place to go when it reaches that time in the evening when your thoughts turn to wining and dining is the Place Decazes, where there are a multitude of bistros vying for your custom. Here is the ideal place to try not just the local cuisine, but also to take advantage of the intoxicating choice of superb wines which are produced around Libourne. A glass of sensual Pomerol? A taste of rich spicy Fronsac, perhaps? Or maybe you would like a St Emilion, known and loved by connoisseurs the world over. Anyway, the choice is yours. You are in the wine capital of France!

Festivals, markets and other activities

Apart from eating and drinking, there are plenty of things to do and see in and around Libourne. There is a museum, the Musée des Beaux Arts et Archéologie, a beautiful Gothic Church, a clock tower on the quayside and a statue of the Duc Decazes, who was born in the town. Add to this the thrice weekly markets, the Château de Vayres, with its fabulous grounds and perfectly restored kitchen (complete with working spit powered by a cannonball!), and a sprinkling of fêtes and festivals, and you have a heady blend which cannot fail to please. For the sporty, there are the usual array of opportunities and activities on offer, and you wont have to travel far to find an excellent golf course either.

How to get there

Getting to Libourne couldn't really be easier. Ryanair and flybe both offer flights to Bergerac, while Bordeaux airport is served by flybe, easyJet, British Airways, bmibaby and Aer Lingus. Those who like to let the train take the strain and travel by rail can reach Libourne in less than ten hours, beginning with a trip on Eurostar from London to Paris, making a leisurely change to a train which travels directly to Libourne. If travelling by road, the A10/N10 will take you from Paris to Bordeaux, from where Libourne is just a short distance away.

Property prices and availability in and around Libourne

Property in the Bordeaux area tends to be fairly expensive, as it is rapidly becoming a popular part of France. Business prospects here are good, and Libourne is a very desirable location in every sense, although property in the town is perhaps less expensive than in Bordeaux itself. Out in the surrounding countryside, however, there are still some bargain properties to be found, though you have to look closely to find them and snap them up when you do!

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Libourne AT A GLANCE

WHERE IS Libourne?

The town of Libourne is found in south-western France. It lies in the east of the department of the Gironde, close to Gironde's border with the Dordogne.

Libourne Property Map

IN THE REGION OF AQUITAINE

Aquitaine Guide

Aquitaine Property Map

IN THE DEPARTMENT OF GIRONDE

Gironde Guide

  Gironde Map


Population: 22,500


Access: By air: Fly to Bergerac with Ryanair or flybe or to Bordeaux with easyJet, British Airways, flybe, bmibaby or Aer Lingus. By rail: Take Eurostar to Paris, change to a train for Libourne.


Economy: Wine, wine and more wine! Libourne has been an important wine growing town for centuries.


Interesting fact: The town was named after an English man, Roger de Leybourne, who was given charge of the town in the early days of its existence. A bastide town, it was built by the English and passed into French hands in the fifteenth century.

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