You mustn’t leave Saumur without having a game of Boule de Fort, a very friendly game played with bowls made of sorbwood or resin, slightly flattened at both ends and with a metal strip around the middle. As the centre of gravity is slightly off-centre the bowl has a weak side and a strong side (‘fort’ in French, hence its name). Classed as a Loire Heritage Game by the Ministry of Culture, it is the only game in the world that is played in carpet slippers ! If you’d like to have a try, then go to the Cercle de la Ville de Saumur !
There is no shortage of festive events in Saumur, most of them centred around wine. At the beginning of summer Anjou Vélo Vintage is a vintage cycling event with different circuits along the banks of the Loire and through the vineyards. Les Grandes Tablées takes place during a week in August when a gigantic restaurant is set up in the centre of Saumur with a unique batch of wine served by Saumur-Champigny wine-growers. September starts with Festivini, a festival of wine and culture. During the summer, Saumur Anim’ offers a full programme of concerts and all types of events : grape-picking, an open-air cinema, etc.
Lucie, who works at Gîtes de France Anjou, has a secret passion for hand-made chocolates from the Barre de Chocolat just near the Place St Pierre. They also sell delicious cookies and hot chocolate !
How to get to Saumur
By rail : to Saumur by TER or Interloire trains. 2½ hours from Paris.
By road : via A85 Autoroute and D roads. 3 hours from Paris via A11.
Here are a few ideas for outings around Saumur. Follow the « Vignobles et troglodytes du Saumurois », a 90km wine trail, to discover some of the many AOC (PDO) wines of the area. Meet the animals at Bioparc in Doué-la-Fontaine. Immerse yourself in the history of Fontevraud Abbey. You can see all our recommendations on our website !
Discover Maine-et-Loire with Gîtes de France Anjou : Terra Botanica Angers , Louresse-Rochemenier troglodyte village, Bioparc de Doué-la-Fontaine, Angers, La Mine Bleue