The Great Outdoors: the treasures of Louroux.
Le Louroux. Less than thirty kilometres south of Tours, half-way between Veigné and Ligueil, an unexpected sight suddenly comes into view, the circular pigeon house and the fortified priory, the seigniorial manor house and tithe barn. Experience a growing sense of wonder as you explore the village, from the communal mill to the 13th century St Sulpice church, not to mention the phone box nestled in a defence tower or the wolf, more grey than russet, in the delightful local produce store. But to truly appreciate the Renaissance façade of the seigniorial manor house or the barn loft, take a guided tour of the village with town councillor Elisabeth van der Motte.
An observatory to enjoy the peacefulness without disturbing
In fall, the best time of the day to meet the inhabitants of the Louroux pond is in the morning. The temperature is cool, the birds have not yet been disturbed. Carefully hidden in the large observatory, enchanted by the peacefulness of the area, settle into your bird-watching stations, whether you're on your own or with family. Thanks to the small windows located at varying heights, bird-watchers can comfortably observe egrets, herons, great-crested grebes as well as coots, year-round residents. In early fall, black terns and ospreys stop for a break here in the reedy pond on their way to Africa. To the southwest, through a small breach in the tall brushwood fence, you might be lucky enough to contemplate black storks resting on the small Beaulieu pond.
A nature reserve waiting to be explored
Created by 11th century monks for fish farming, or perhaps due to a Saint Martin miracle in order to drown a ferocious russet wolf, the Louroux pond benefits from the "espace naturel sensible" protected status. With a surface area of fifty-six hectares, it is the largest pond in Touraine. Surrounded by a reedy marsh, the pond is home to (or temporarily shelters) over two hundred avian species, thirty kinds of dragonflies and protected plant species such as the loose-flowered orchid and the greater spearwort. The waters are home to pikes, tenches, zanders, roaches... Every two years, in November, a fish festival is held in conjunction with the pond drainage, the perfect occasion to return for a visit.
Phone: +33 (0)2 47 91 82 82
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