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Chalais is a pretty market town set in rural, green countryside. Bustling and varied, it particularly springs to life in August when it hosts an international show-jumping festival: Le Jumping International. A horse capital for four days, people ride in from all over to partake in the events. Market day is every Monday offering a true taste of French country life. There is a popular music café with live bands, a medieval castle with a famous restaurant, numerous exhibitions, annual firework displays and various festivals. The small lake of Brossac is picturesque, the river beach at Aubterre is extremely popular and Cognac, the famous brandy town is also nearby. Many, charming, small restaurants and boutiques can also be found in the surrounding villages and towns, overall creating a typical French atmosphere in a sunny climate.

Set in the south of the Charente department, Chalais is only one hour from the famous towns of Angouleme and Cognac. Bordeaux, the nearest airport, can be reached in just under one hour, following this there are Bergerac and La Rochelle airports which can be reached in 90mins.

As well as the show-jumping festival every August, there is a music festival at Place de la Fontaine and a free ball with fireworks at Place de Champ de Foire every July. Market day is every Monday without fail; traffic is diverted and the whole town gives over to stalls selling local produce. Throughout the summer meanwhile there is a music café with live bands playing a wide selection of jazz, reggae, folk and rock songs.

The main sight to see is the Chateau de Tallyrand-Perigord, a medieval castle built in the C11th with an interior that includes a marble lounge, an C18th painted ceiling and a monumental staircase. Open every April to September, visits can be conducted by a guide if desired. The C12th Saint-Martial church is also interesting with its Roman façade, Mediterranean influences and trompe-l’oeil paintings.

The town is well equipped for most sports with clubs existing for football, tennis, motorbiking, cycling, petanque, fishing, golf, canoeing, pony trekking and swimming. There are several schools, shops to cater for all tastes and all basic amenities; hospital, dentist and pharmacy for example. The small lake of Brossac is an ideal spot for picnics and days out, as is the river beach at Aubterre. And a trip to a vineyard is a great experience, especially the ones surrounding Cognac.

Food and Drink
Chalais is famous for its veal and every July there is a veal festival selling the finest examples of the season. Oysters of Marennes-Oléron, Chabichou cheese, cognac, Pineau des Charentes, AOC butter, goat cheese, lamb, mojhettes and snails are also popular.


  • Le Relais du Chateau, 15 rue Chateau, tel no: 05 45 98 23 58, menu 20-30€
  • Les Couleurs, 1 rue Four Banal, tel no : 05 45 98 07 63, menu 15€
  • Primavera Pizzeria, rue Tude, tel no : 05 45 98 03 66, menu 10€
  • Restaurant La Cagouille, 50 rue Bordeaux, tel no : 05 45 98 14 68, menu 15€

Our team of sale advisers at Sextant Properties will be happy to help you to find a property near Chalais. We have a large network of partners in Chalais. All of them are registered French real estate agents and speak both French and English. Whatever kind of property you are looking for: farmhouse, longere, barn, gite, B&B, country house, mill, castle or chateau, we will do our best to find a property in Chalais matching your requirements.

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