Bellac is a village located in the North of Haute-Vienne department, in Nouvelle Aquitaine region. This city has unspoilt environment made of forests, pastoral landscapes and numerous rivers cross the area of which the most significant is the Vincou river. The origin of the name is unclear but it could come from the Roman “Bellus” and “acum” which would mean “The land of Bellus”.
Bellac is a crossroad town between Limousin, Charentes, Poitou and Berry regions thanks to the RN145 road (Europe Centre-Atlantic road), RN147 (Alliers-Limoges), D951 (Bellac to Chasseneuil-sur-Bonnieure), D675 (link between Vienne and Dordogne departments) and the alternative route Paris-Spain.
Moreover, the airport Limoges-Bellegrade serves the town thanks to connection provided by shuttle buses and trains.
During the first half of the 10th century, Boson le Vieux, Count of Marche, ordered the construction of a wooden castle nearby the Vincou river. The small village grew thanks to its location: being a crossroads between Limousin, Marche, Poitou and Berry enhanced trade activities. A century later, tanners settled in this city. In 1531, Bellac was integrated to the Kingdom of France. In 1663, Jean de la Fontaine stayed a few days in Bellac and drew his inspiration for one of his fable (Le Coche et la Mouche) from the city.
There are a few beautiful monuments in Bellac, remains of its eventful past such as:
Notre Dame de Bellac Church (12th-14th century) which is heritage listed since 1926, Le vieux pont de la Pierre, a bridge built during the 13th century to ease trade towards south and west of the city. Bellac being a city of tanners since the 13th century, the ancient drying room (15th century) is worth seeing. The traveller can also discover the remains of the ramparts with its Consul Genebrias tower near the place where was standing one of the three entrance to the medieval city, Le Grand Portail.
Bellac also has a few parks and green places to see such as Parc Silvestre located in the city centre, Parc Jolibois which comes with wooden facilities for sport activities, Square Wassertrüdigen in the old neighbourhood of Bellac. Aside, the Vincou river offers facilities for fishing activity, relaxing, sports, walking, for children.
Finally, Bellac organise markets every Wednesday (Place du Champ de Foire), Thursday (former market square) and Saturday, which is the most significant one (Place du Champ de Foire).
Food and Drink
The Limousin gastronomy is definitely the main influence in Bellac meals. Chestnuts are an important part of the Limousin cuisine culture. It was the base of farmers’ diet during winters and today, it can be found in many regional recipes: in pâté, black pudding, cakes, with meat. There is even chestnut liqueur.
Limousin grows apples, the Golden d’altitude, and produces about 110 000 tons a year. It was imported from the United States and adopted by the Limousin soil. It now has its own Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (a label which testifies to its origin and quality).
Limousin meat established itself in the market. The most famous and appreciated one is Limousin beef with its “veau de lait” or “vache de reforme”. However, its veel, lamb and porc are not to be discarded.
- AUBERGE LE CHEVAL BLANC offers traditional south west cuisine. 2, avenue Jean Jaures 87300 Bellac. Tel : 05.55.68.84.88
- CENTRAL HOTEL provides traditional French meals. 7, avenue Denfert Rochereau. Tel: 05.55.68.00.43
Our team of sale advisers at Sextant Properties will be happy to help you to find a property in Nouvelle Aquitaine. We have a large network of agents near Bellac. All of them are registered French 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 Bellac matching your requirements. Do not hesitate to contact us to find out more about our selection of properties for sale in Bellac.