Le weekend in …..Alencon, Orne, Normandie
Where to stay, where to eat, what to do, how to get there…….
Where to stay?
A B&B in an 18th Century Normandy chateau on the outskirts of Alencon
|Where to eat – recommended||Le Taverne Karlsbräu/Relais d’Alsace
36, rue Maréchal Delattre de Tassigny, Alençon
Large brasserie in the town centre and open 7 days a week. Wide menu, seafood a speciality. Friendly service.
|Where to eat – gourmet||L Escargot Doré 183, av du Général Leclerc, Alençon – (Tel: 02 33 28 67 67) – opposite the Leclerc shopping centre, just off the main road heading south to Le Mans – truly gourmet experience. Not cheap, but worth it for a special treat. Closed Sunday and Monday.|
|Where to eat – value for money||L’Auberge de la Boule d’Or, 72610 Ancinnes
Step back in time – 4 course menu with choice of 4 starters, 4 main courses, cheese and dessert, carafe of wine and coffee for 11 euos inclusive.
Food is excellent – just don’t pay any attention to the décor! Closed Sunday and Monday.
|Local food specialities||Seafood, pork in cider and cream sauce, apples poached in calvados|
|Local wine/drink||Cider, calvados (apple brandy), pommeau (blend of apple juice and calvados), poiré (perry)|
|Market||Town centre near the church of Notre Dame Thursday and Saturday mornings|
|Must see||Eglise Notre Dame
Chateau de Carrouges
Forest of Perseigne
Forest of Ecouves
Village of St Ceneri-le-Gerei – classed one of the prettiest in France
Gardens of the Mansonière – award-winning gardens
Aventure dans les Arbres – treetop walks at St Léonard des Bois
|A bit of culture?||Theatre, cinema, museum of Beaux Arts with Alençon lace exhibition|
|Shopping||Partly pedestrianised town centre shopping area in Alençon; shopping centres on main roads heading west (Carrefour Centre) and south (Leclerc centre).|
|Somewhere for a stroll||Discovery route of the old town; park des Promenades; surrounding forests of Perseigne and Ecouves|
|Something for the kids||Treetop walks at St Léonard des Bois; animal park of Ecouves; canoeing on the Sarthe|
|Getting there||Autoroute A28 Caen/Le Havre to le Mans TGV from Paris Montparnasse to Le Mans and then local service to Alencon|
|Getting around||Many cycle paths. Buses from town centre to immediate suburbs. Trains to Rouen and Le Mans.|
|When to come
||The Le Mans 24 hour motor race takes place in June every year|
|For a longer stay…..||Numerous gardens, chateaux, pretty villages, Roman remains to visit in the area; activities like horseriding and canoeing are possible.
The Normandy coast, D-Day beaches, Mont St Michel, Giverny, Chateaux of the Loire are all possible as day trips using Alençon as a base.
Recommendations kindly offered by Phil & Jude Graham at la Basse Cour B&B
The former basilica which now serves as a market hall – see www.visitalencon.com