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Chénérailles - where you can experience an authentic way of life

The little village of Chénérailles lies roughly in the centre of the Creuse department of the glorious Limousin region. It's a paradise for anyone who loves rural France, unspoilt countryside, simple pleasures, good food and charming historic villages. Chénérailles is a place for true Francophiles, for those who want to experience an authentic way of life. That said, the village isn't short of modern amenities, nor is it far from major tourist attractions and a variety of sporting and leisure opportunities. And, with Limoges not far away, it's not hard to get to and from the UK either!

Village amenities on offer

Chénérailles is a small but lively village. It's got a good selection of shops, bars and restaurants, and is within easy reach of larger towns like Aubusson for access to major supermarkets and a varied range of other shops and leisure activities. That said, Chénérailles does have a couple of small supermarkets which are handy for everyday goods and groceries.

Frescoes and other heritage to enjoy

The heritage of the village includes the 13th century Church of Saint Barthelemy, with charming frescoes and many interesting features. It's a beautiful church and well worth a look if you're interested in the history, heritage and architecture of France. Further heritage can be found in the village too. There's the Tomb of Saint Barthelemy and the stunning 15th century Château of Villemonteix. The heart of Chénérailles is still discernibly mediaeval, even though the walls that once surrounded it have gone.

Don't miss the horse fairs at Chénérailles

Chénérailles is notable for its twice yearly Horse Fairs. Held on the second Sunday of May and again on the second Sunday of October, these fairs attract horsemen from all over the region and beyond. Even if you're not really an equestrian yourself, the fairs provide a colourful spectacle that's not to be missed.

Leisure and sports available

Chénérailles makes a great base for anyone who enjoys the outdoor life. The village is set on the edge of a lovely forest, which makes a delightful backdrop to life, offering cooling walks and nature trails. The forest walks incorporate some little surprises too, as along the way you'll find areas that have wooden gymnastic structures for those who want to make their walks even more exciting and challenging! Meanwhile the nearby lake offers fishing, swimming and sunbathing, and the village is also equipped with tennis courts. And almost on the doorstep is a good 18-hole golf course, in nearby Gouzon.

Visit mediaeval Aubusson and the memorial town of Oradour sur Glane

Places to visit in the vicinity include the lovely mediaeval town of Aubusson, famed for its carpets and tapestries, and offering plenty more to see and do as well. Then there's the memorial town of Oradour sur Glane, where a terrible massacre took place during World War Two. The town has been preserved exactly as it was left that day, and a visit there is an unforgettable experience.

Explore Limoges and learn about the production of the city's famous porcelain

Limoges itself is also a must see city, with masses of heritage sites and chances to see the porcelain tradition come to life in museums and craft shops all over the town.

How to get there

You can fly to Limoges or Clermont Ferrand. If you prefer the train you can travel by TGV to Poitiers or Angoulême, and then continue to Limoges by an intercity train. A further local connection would be necessary, to get closer to your destination. If driving, and a car will be needed to get the most from your stay in Chénérailles, you'll find the village on the D997/D990/D55.

Property prices and availability in and around Chénérailles

The Limousin is known for its amazingly low property prices, so if you're looking to find a lot of house for your money, this could be just the place to look. It's currently possible to buy a ready to live in village house for less than 50,000 Euros. Holidays in this lovely area could be on the cards for years to come!

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Chénérailles AT A GLANCE

WHERE IS Chénérailles?

Chénérailles lies to the south-west of central France. It's located slightly to the east of the centre of the Creuse department.

Chénérailles Property Map


Limousin Guide

Limousin Property Map


Creuse Guide

  Creuse Map

Population: 736

Access: By air: Fly to Limoges or Clermont Ferrand. By rail: The TGV runs to Poitiers and Angoulême. By road: The town lies on the D997/D990/D55.

Economy: The economy includes local agriculture and small commerce.

Interesting fact: Long before its important position in mediaeval times, Chénérailles existed as a Roman fort, and many Roman artefacts and treasures have been found at the site of this occupation.

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