Jump to content

Activities for little ones

Recommended Posts

We will be staying near Ruffec for the first three weeks in August and will be joined by four grandchildren for the second and third weeks (Girls 6, 3 & 2 + Boy 6).

Just wondered if any one can recommend suitable activities not too far away please.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ruffec is a small town in the middle of the countryside, as I'm sure you must have realised already, therefore it's a little unrealistic expect to fine organised entertainment for children, especially this young. The French themselves seem to make do quite adequately with simple things like the village frairies which take place during August, and also paddling/swimming at the local plan d'eau or open air swimming pool.

Ruffec has a pool and there is a nice loisires spot on the river Charente at Le Rejallant (just outside Ruffec) and another at St Macoux. You could visit the Monkey Valley (Vallée des Singes) which is just north of Civray, or further afield Futuroscope outside Poitiers. From our own experience you'd find it difficult to entertain 2 and 3 year olds with organised stuff, they seem quite happy just splashing around on a beach, albeit an artificial one.

There is a tree-climbing place which looks good for older kids, and this is just outside Ruffec at Taize-Aize on the Charente; again not really for the youngest of your party.

At Confolens there is the Velorail; trucks that you pedal on the old railway track to Manot. Maximum 5 people per truck so you'd need to split your party to ensure you've got a pedaller for each truck and it still might be too hard. Ideally you need 2 adults to pedal with 3 (lighter!) passengers; the first leg is slightly uphill. We took our youngest grandson when he was about 3 and used a car baby seat to strap him into the truck seat. An afternoon trip takes about 3 hours and you have time for a picnic at the turnaround.

You can find all of these via Google.

EDIT: I forgot to point out that 4 grandchildren plus 2 adults (?) is normally more than a standard car is equipped to carry. If you want to travel together and haven't got a large people carrier (that's not a carrier for large people!) you may be in time to hire one from Super-U (Civray or Saizé-Vaussais) who have a Nissan Qashqai+2 (7-seater).


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hopefully their parents will accompany the little ones.[;-)]

Not local to Ruffec but if you do plan to visit elsewhere and have a day out try the following:

Pons 17800

Excellent large / garden park in front of the Hotel de Ville and a good playground close to the Donjon. Cafés here where you can sit and enjoy the view. Walk by the river and mini golf etc at the aire de loisirs.

In Saintes 17100  by the river there are pleasant gardens and a little area with animals for the children to watch.

La Rochelle

Visit the Aquarium, it's suitable for all ages and there is room to wheel a child in a pushchair if necessary.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote user="Cendrillon"]Hopefully their parents will accompany the little ones.[;-)]


Ha ha, yes, I would hope so, however we do have our grandchildren without their parents, although they are a few years older! [8-|] You'd be surprised (or perhaps not [;-)] ) to find how much better this makes the visit; no parental influence, just grandma and granddad to spoil the kids! [:D]

We are just 23km from Ruffec, so I can vouch for a lack of organised entertainment. It's back to the simple life, which is why we like it!

I'll second that mention of La Rochelle, and add the zoo at la Palmyre (near Royan), although it takes around 2 hours to get to the coast; not ideal with the little ones.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
All we can do is watch and wait.

I have a feeling this holiday was going to happen in August, if that's the case it's early days and we will have to wait and see whether there is any feedback. Perhaps the OP will have some useful activity ideas to add to our suggestions.[:)]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
Although we will never know...

Just in case it's of any interest, it's worth saying that if anyone ever contemplates visiting the aquarium in LA Rochelle, which is excellent, as has been mentioned, think twice about it if you've saved it for a rainy day in peak holiday season. Everyone else has the same idea and it's not unusual to see queues snaking round the outside of the building for yards in the pouring rain....
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...