Two family days around Saint-Savinien

Are you looking for things to do as a family?

Saint-Savinien, labelled a Small Town of Character, is a village that offers a range of activities and days out perfect for your family weekend in Charente-Maritime.  A little corner of paradise beside the Charente to be enjoyed fully in summer just as in autumn or spring.

Day 1 – Art in all its splendour in Saint-Savinien

 Hungry for adventure?  Get your family together to start the Saint-Savinien Tèrra Aventura trail and dive into the town’s history.  A former boat port and a major site for the extraction of dressed stone, the village has today been taken over by artists, justifying its label of “City of Arts & Crafts”.  Stories and anecdotes swarm in this online treasure hunt that your children will love.  And at the end of the trail, they will be thrilled to find the treasure and acquire a badge in the form of Zart, a mischievous rogue in the large family of Poïz!

You’ll find the presence of art on every street corner.  As you turn into a lane, galleries and workshops, permanent or temporary, open their doors.  At the Museum of Miniatures, the enthusiastic guide, Mme Lapierre, who makes the models, will take you on a trip into the past.  This magical world of the miniature tells the story of daily life before World War I through social and regional disparities, tracing the worlds of the farmworker, labourer, middle class and aristocracy in our regions at the end of the 19th century.

vue sur la Charente depuis le belvédère de Saint Savinien

Saint-Savinien inspires artists and it is also labelled a “Village of Stone & Water”.  Your children will be delighted by its waterside situation and the nautical activities on offer!

Saint-Savinien and the delights of water

But before getting involved in water-based activities, enjoy an al fresco lunch.  You can picnic at the Barbara fountain, at the end of the Allée des Soupirs with a lovely view of the carrelets (fishing huts) and La Grenouillette island.  If, for you, family holidays mean taking your time, this shady park by the Charente will provide many happy memories.  And fans of the post-lunch siesta will not contradict us!


Are the children getting impatient?  You’re in the right place for water and nautical activities this afternoon.  At Port Miniature than can captain real ships, modelled to their size, such as a freighter, a Mississippi steamboat or a trawler during a 15 minute cruise of the lake.  And on the Island of Antique Merry-go-rounds, they can discover the joys of yesteryear.  A bistro for freshwater sailors to be followed by a well-deserved rest.  At the end of the afternoon, book an electric boat at the Canotiers for a family discovery trip on the Charente.

After such a full day, enjoy dinner in one of Saint-Savinien’s restaurants, with their mouth-watering menus!

Votre première journée bien remplie, vous apprécierez un dîner dans l’un des restaurants de Saint-Savinien, aux cartes alléchantes.

Day 2 – Adventure in the Boutonne valley

Fancy a morning of sport or relaxation?  The choice is varied: swimming in the pool at Saint-Savinien, water-ski at Taillebourg or horse-riding at Bords, just to give you a few examples.

You could also go for a bike ride along the Boutonne, towards Tonnay-Boutonne, a village in a green setting enhanced by the river, just a dozen or so kilometres from Saint-Savinien.  The banks of this tributary of the Charente are shared with anglers and walkers.  This is an ideal itinerary, 100% nature, easy and energising for the whole family.  After a couple of hours of sporting endeavour for your legs, your thinking cap will be needed next!

In Tonnay-Boutonne, head for “Les Cerveaux Associés” where you’ll live through an extraordinary adventure: an “Escape Game” requiring you to explore a wrecked pirate ship, find the lost manuscript or take part in the heist of the century.  Leading the investigation and resolving the puzzles in a limited timescale that will allow you to escape requires collaboration:  mutual assistance and careful thought imply imagination and cheerfulness.  An hour spent together on the tasks enables a strengthening of family bonds.  And at picnic time, return to the spot you noticed on the banks of the Boutonne during your morning’s adventure and enjoy a family break.

Unusual visits for the family

In the afternoon, head for “Les Trésors de Lisette” at Archingeay.  Here you’ll find a remarkable collection of culinary objects (enamelled coffee-pots, cake moulds, scales, decorated ladle caddies), curiosities (toys, fashion, miniatures) and a magnificent exhibition of tins (biscuits, chocolate, tea, coffee …)  And you can enjoy a family hour here thanks to “Search games”, a selection of visit and production games.

Nearby, the Château de Bois Charmant (Les Nouillers) features summer treasure hunts on the theme of fairy tales.

Ten kilometres distant, the Romanesque church, often called the pearl of Saintonge, and the Lanterne des Morts at Fenioux are remarkable edifices to admire.  The Lanterne des Morts was built to honour the dead and also to guide travellers and pilgrims.  If you’re not too tired from your exertions of the morning, the 38 steps of the narrow spiral staircase to the top will seem like child’s play.

Towards the end of the afternoon, travel south, to Taillebourg.  Depending on the time you arrive, you can enjoy the facilities of the water sports centre with baby-ski for 3 years old and above, water-skiing and wakeboard.  Admire too the soft light of evening by climbing up to the park of the ruined castle that still dominates the roofs of the village and the valley of the Charente.  Choose your restaurant to enjoy the restful atmosphere of this delightful Saintongeais village.

To enjoy all these family activities to the full during your stay around Saint-Savinien, make sure you acquire a “Carte Famille Val’Idées”, an open sesame for great ideas and special offers with numerous organisations in Vals de Saintonge.