We moved to France last year and bought a house and land in the Charente a few kilometres from Verteuil sur Charente. Unfortunately things haven't really worked out as planned and we have decided that we are going to sell up, once we have finished renovating the house. We realise it may take some time to sell, but we have savings to tide us over and may even head back to the UK for a few months.
We both love living in France, but we feel that the Charente is not the right department for us. Where we are located is just a little too busy and the landscape is a little bland and heavily agricultural. It has also been severely hot and baked here in the Charente this summer, so maybe for us and what we want to do, living at altitude will help moderate the temperature.
In hindsight, the Haute Charente/Haute Vienne is much closer to the type of landscape we love.
We spent a couple of years researching our move to France and looked at properties in the Dordogne, Haute Vienne, Vienne and Charente. We were staying with family in the UK at the time and felt that they needed their space back, so having looked at around 50 properties we chose the one we now have, under some pressure, I may add. We have now realised we made a mistake and need to move on.
We are starting our research early and looking at other places in France. My partner wasn't too keen on the Dordogne (although I liked the northern part of it). We both liked the Haute Vienne, but couldn't find the right property/land combination.
One area we didn't check out was the Creuse. However, we have met several Brits who have really recommended it and said it is beautiful and quiet. We have lived in some very quiet and remote places in Wales and Scotland, so isolation doesn't concern us. We would just like to get people's thoughts on living in this quiet part of France. What is the climate like? The locals? We have also read that the area is popular for Green tourism?
One thing for sure is that we have been on a massive learning curve during our ten months in France! It really is very different living in a place to just visiting for a few days!!
We are planning a visit to the Creuse in the autumn to check it out for ourselves.
We would appreciate people's thoughts?
Paul and Jackie