Arrivals and Departures:
Check-in time: 16:00
Check-out time: 10:00
Reservation Deposit: 20%
Balance: 30 days prior to arrival
Sleeps: 6 + cot sleeping infants
Remember the BBC sit com 'The Good Life'? Imagine if Tom and Barbara had the
benefits of acres of glorious French countryside and years of experience as a
vet and farmer in their favour. Then mix in six friendly kids and meadow
scattered with well-spaced yurts and tipis, and you might come close
to picturing the magic found at La Tuilerie.
This is a place of unforgettable holidays for parents and kids. Where every day is an adventure. Dads become cowboy-like heroes to their offspring, and kids delight in the freedom of the great outdoors. All with the safety net of welcoming hosts who know the land and the lingo, and a communal farmhouse with private bathrooms and a full kitchen with dining room, should the weather not play fair. There's also the luxury of daily breakfasts including fresh baked croissants and steaming coffee.
La Tuilerie, is a taste of luxury life under canvas that will send the whole family home with smiles on their faces. For starters, your tent is waiting for you when you arrive – although in true 'glamping' style, the 'tents' here are a choice of solid and stylish Mongolian-style yurts, or imposing Native American-style tipis. All are set with space for privacy and sociability in a pretty, grassy field with an ajacent farmhouse, which is home to each unit's private shower room, and a communal farmhouse kitchen and dining room. Each 'tent' comes with comfy futons and real linen bedding (bye, bye sleeping bags!), tables, chairs, rugs, cushions, an ice box, cooking fire (although the farmhouse kitchen facilities are always available) and all the crockery, glasses, cooking equipment and towels you're likely to need. No waking up shivering with cold either. Each yurt or tipi has a central chiminea – a wood-burning heater – to keep it toasty warm on even the chilliest night. The tipis and one of the yurts are a roomy 5 metres in diameter and sleep 4 – 6 people. The second yurt is 6 metres and in diameter and will comfortably accommodate 8.
After a rousing hot shower in a private shower room, guests can rustle up breakfast on your own little campfire, with home grown meat, fruit and vegetables, jams and chutneys from the farm shop, or head up to the dining room in one of the farm buildings for coffee and a yummy selection of locally-baked croissant and breads. Paula organises regular table d'hote dinner or pizza evenings where everyone eats together, then the kids all rush off to play while the adults chat and drink wine around a campfire as the billions of stars of the Milky Way twinkle into focus overhead.
Any culture shock that your children suffer on discovering that there are no TVs on the site will be quickly forgotten when they realise that they are now officially part of a working farm – one that comes complete with a wide-range of ready-made two and four-legged playmates. They can help feed and gather sheep, collect eggs, feed pigs and harvest fruit and veg from the gardens, all with the enthusiastic support and encouragement of Paula and Graham's six children, aged from 4 to 17. Meanwhile, you can stay worry-free, knowing that two fellow parents have carefully kid-proofed the whole site, ensuring there are no hidden dangers for smalls ones such as open water or stairs. Once they've done their bit around the farm, your youngsters will have plenty more to keep them occupied. There are ride-on trikes, swings, sand pits and paddling pools, not to mention 250 acres of beautiful woodland next door, stuffed with bird and animal life, that you can all explore on locally-hired bikes that come complete with child trailers. Further afield are beaches dotted around secluded lakes as well as the history and culture of the city of Limoges, 35 minutes away by car.
Paula and Graham are proud of their eco-credentials. Everything is powered by renewable energy, food is locally sourced, and most waste is recycled. But they also take a lot of time and trouble to supply all the modern bits and pieces that make a holiday a stress-free experience. So there's WiFi to let you keep in contact with the outside world and essential baby equipment such travel cots, highchairs, baths, monitors, potties, push chairs, plastic crockery and cutlery. If the charms of the great outdoors wear thin for a while for your little ones – or it’s too hot or rainy outside – there are masses of toys, books, play dough and paints inside.
Obviously it's great to know the children are well catered for. But holidays are about quality time for you and your other half too. With that in mind, Paula's 17-year-old daughter Maisy is on standby for a spot of babysitting if you feel the need for a romantic meal out for two.
The Tipi for 6 sleeps up to 4 adults and 2 children, plus infants . It is 5 metres in diameter and furnished with three comfortable double futons with bed linen, plus an ice box (ice packs provided in farmhouse), chiminea, outdoor cooking fire and a wooden picnic table. Guests have use of private shower room for each Tipi/Yurt (baby bath provided on request) and a large communal kitchen with all mod cons and dining area in the adjacent farmhouse.
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Limousin, heavily wooded and sparkling with a shimmering necklace of rivers and crystal-clear lakes, is the perfect place for forgetting about the rat race and getting back to nature.
Next to La Tuilerie are 250 acres of stunning woods, alive with wild boar, badgers, foxes, roe deer, beech martins and red squirrels. Set off walking with a pair of binoculars and you'll be able to point out to the children red kites, owls, buzzards, osprey, woodpeckers, hoopoes and kingfishers swooping and flitting through the trees. Walk or cycle (bikes are available for hire nearby) in practically any direction and you can spend hours, or even days, exploring many kilometres of tracks and paths, connecting glades and pretty hamlets.
Five minutes drive away are the sparkling waters of La Souterraine, a fabulous safe swimming lake with its own beach, play park and restaurant. It's one of the many lakes in the area, most of the them with facilities for waterports such as canoeing, kayaking, sailing and waterskiing. Lac de Eguzon, Lac de St. Paradou and Lac de Vasivière are some of the biggest and best-equipped and they are only 30 away by car.
The children will love the chance to go horse-riding in the woods at one of the many equestrian centres in the area, clamber through the branches at tree climbing activity centres such as Tarz-en-Arbre, Limoges or Arbre-en-Arbre, Lac de Vassivière, or even go trekking with llamas at Les Fragnes. Other places worth a visit are Les Loups de Chabrières at Gueret, an amazing wolf park where you can watch the beautiful predators being fed while learning about plans to conserve them in the wilds, and the nearby Le Labyrinthe Geant, an enormous maze that the whole family can spend hours exploring.
Finally of course, there is the pretty old city of Limoges, full of shops, restaurants and low-key cultural charm which, like all the other attractions, is within a 45 minute driving radius of La Tuilerie.
By air: Direct from London Gatwick or Stansted (also from Bristol, Liverpool, Southampton, Birmingham and East Midlands) to Limoges, a 35-minute drive from La Tuilerie
By train: Eurostar to Lille then catch the main Paris to Toulouse train service to La Souterraine where Paula or Graham will collect you.
Past Guest Ratings: * (1 guests)
*Rating collated since Feb '10.
All verified as genuine BFB guests who experienced the accommodation with young children.
There are currently no guest reviews of this property.
Graham and Paula and their 6 children offer you an enthusiastic and dynamic welcome to their farm. They provide the holiday they wish they could go on with their kids. They have attempted (and suceeded) to iron out all the annoying bits of all the holidays they went on with their kids and offer a place where all the family really can enjoy themselves. It's also great value.
Graham and Paula strongly believe in farming inan environmentally and animal friendly way, this becomes obvious when you taste the fantastic food. Whether it is a lamb chop or sirloin steak that Paula has just cut up for you to barbeque, or a pizza straight from the wood fired pizza oven, everything comes from the farm and everything is delicious.
As there are always at least 6 kids 'on site' and usually lots more, there is always someone for your kids to play with. The kids love learning about the farm, going off to gather the sheep, collect eggs, feed the rabbits and so finding out where their food comes from and how it ends up tasting so good.