Location Sablonceaux

North of the Seudre Douce, 6 km from Saujon, Sablonceaux is a rural town which is famous for its abbey. Anchored in the heart of the Val de Seudre, in the middle of the countryside, it benefits from a calm and preserved environment between forests, agricultural and wine-growing champagnes.

The Abbey of Notre-Dame de Sablonceaux 

When you arrive in Sablonceaux, it is impossible to miss its imposing XNUMXth century abbey. It dominates the village. The beauty of the place does not leave indifferent.

The Duke of Aquitaine founded the abbey in the heart of the ancient Baconnais forest which then extended between Seudre and Charente. The regular canons of Saint-Augustin took care of the surrounding lands and stored their harvests in the cellars and the granary.

After the Hundred Years and Religious Wars, the abbey was damaged and remodeled. During the French Revolution, all the canons were expelled and the building was sold as national property. Although classified as a Historic Monument in 1905, its restoration did not begin until 1963. It was then necessary to wait until 1986 for it to once again become a place of worship under the aegis of the Chemin Neuf Community.

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A visit to the abbey is a must. It mainly consists of the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, famous for his gothic bell tower and Roman domes, and a wing dedicated to the monks with their cells.
Located in the religious dormitory, the chapter house was used by the Chapter. Approach the Baroque porch from 1788 called the "portal of Burgundy". From here, you can admire the abbey house with its courtyard hosting a 150-year-old American black walnut, listed as a remarkable tree.

To find out more about the monument, we recommend the guided tours. They allow you to soak up the daily life of the canons of the time and to access the XNUMXth century dwelling, the cellar and the attic of plenty, whose impressive framework is supported by a succession of vaulted cellars.

Abbey of Our Lady of Sablonceaux

It remains today a place of life and spiritual retreat.

History in the heart of nature

After the visit, follow the walking and hiking trail PR16 “ The Way of the Priests which sinks into the forest. You are following in the footsteps of the monks who once took this path. This route linked the abbey of Sablonceaux to Saint-Romain-de-Benet.

The abbey is also a good starting point for walking around Sablonceaux, in the Saintonge countryside. On foot, the Detours® trail allows you to discover in particular the charm of the surroundings of the abbey. On the way, we cross the Berthegille bridge. This is the last remaining ford for the passage of the stream “la course de Sablonceaux”.

The hamlet of Berthegille is crossed by a variant of the route of Saint-Jacques de Compostela. From Saintes, it turns west towards Royan. This place conceals a well-hidden vernacular heritage: the raised stone, Neolithic dolmen listed as a Historic Monument in 1937.

Sablonceaux is also a land of horses. On Destination Royan Atlantique, it marks the start of the Cardinals Route. This route is the local version of the European Route d'Artagnan. 84 km long, this equestrian route takes you to Floirac in the footsteps of the musketeer. A few meters from the abbey, the equestrian center of La Rondellerie welcomes you.

Sandy and clay-limestone, the land offers ideal ground for producing IGP Charentais wines, Pineau des Charentes and Cognac.

Discover the richness of the terroir and the know-how from generation to generation by meeting passionate producers.

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