Expert Property guide to Montmorillon and around, the Vienne

Written by on September 2, 2020 in Property in France

View of the town of Montmorillon across a river, church steeples and ancient buildings...

Montmorillon is in the department of the Vienne, Nouvelle-Aquitaine (formerly Poitou-Charentes) in south west France. The town is situated on the Gartempe river at the geographical crossroads of  Indre, Haute-Vienne and the Vienne. Around 50 miles from the city of Poitiers and 30 miles from Limoges, both of which have airports with flights to the UK, the town has a lot to offer those looking for a permanent move or second home in France.

Montmorillon is famous for its Cité de l’Ecrit et des Metiers du Livre, a town of books and writing. It specialises in second-hand book sellers, book specialists and craftsmen from calligraphers to illustrators..

We talk to Debra and Les Bush, a former childminder and plumber from Surrey about life in the Vienne. Both now local property agents they share some of their top tips for property seekers in the Montmorillon area.

Can you tell us a little about you and where you are from?

Man and woman sit on a castle wall in the Vienne department, France

We moved to the Vienne in 2005 to  seek a more relaxed way of life. We bought a barn which we slowly renovated. Initially, we lived in our caravan which was no easy task with a 5 year old, a dog and a cat. We kept chickens and reared sheep on our land which was a really great learning experience for us all.

In 2016 we moved into Montmorillon to start a new renovation project and so that our daughter could go to the school there. Our daughter is now training to be a nurse in Poitiers. We feel really lucky to live in such a beautiful area with friendly locals who have such strong family values.

What inspired you to move to the Vienne?

River runs through tranquil countryside, edged by forests in the Vienne deparment

Wide open spaces. Easy to get back to the UK either by plane or road. Diverse terrain for walking, cycling, horse riding, fishing. General relaxed lifestyle. Family friendly. Excellent healthcare, great schools and good roads…

We like renovating and our current project is a three storey property in town – we would never be able to afford it in the UK.

We fell in love with the history of the region and love to visit the chateaux in this area. The countryside with its lakes and rivers reminds us of the Surrey countryside.

What are the attractions of Montmorillon and the area?

Church of Montmorillon reflected in the river which passes at its feetMontmorillon is a great town. Not so big you can’t get to know it well, and not so small that you never run out of things to do. We love to have a picnic by the river and enjoy water sports such as water skiing and kayaking. The town has good restaurants and shops.

Futuroscope, the theme park which is all about multimedia is easy to get to. It’s an amazing place, not like any other theme park you’ll have been to. Science, technology, cinema – including 4D, it’s hard to describe but it’s brilliant for the whole family.

There’s a great monthly market at nearby Coulonges Les Herolles. It’s one of France’s largest open air street markets, and the oldest in the region. You can find just about everything here!  At St Savin, along the river Gartempe, the 11th century Abbey church has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site and it’s a great place to visit and take a wander.

There are loads of outdoor activities to do in the area from hiking to horse riding, fishing and cycling.

The coastal towns of La Rochelle and Royan aren’t far away. They have marvellous beaches and excellent seafood restaurants.

The surrounding countryside is wonderful.

We feel like we have the best of everything here, countryside, seaside and great facilities.

Expert Property guide to Montmorillon and around

Stone barn style houses in the Vienne Department, France

Montmorillon and the outlying smaller towns and villages are popular with expats as there’s plenty of property choices to suit every budget. And for those who don’t mind doing a bit of DIY and renovating, there are some real bargains to be found.

Home seekers usually like to have a bakers and a café within walking distance and a local market they can visit once a week.

For those who want lots of space and not to be in a busy town centre, there’s a lot of choice where you can be close to villages and amenities.

There are pretty villages around Montmorillon with properties for sale at reasonable prices. Places like Saulgé, La Trimouille, Journet, Lathus St Remy and St Leomer are well worth looking at.

What are typical properties like in the area?

The town of Montmorillon has fine old houses and town houses. In the surrounding area, stone built houses and barns with land are typical. This area has appeal for young families, middle aged people, retirees and professionals who can work remotely. There is a mix of holiday home purchasers and those who are looking for a permanent home.

You’ll find a wide range of properties in this area – complete renovations to beautiful homes that are completely finished. Modern bungalows may not have the character that typical British buyers crave, but for retirees they offer all the mod cons, lock up and leave security and ease of maintenance that an old property might not. There really is something to suit all tastes and budgets in an area that offers a true French taste of the good life…

See Debra and Les Bush’s portfolio of property in and around Montmirillon and the department of the Vienne, Haute Vienne and Indre:

Related Articles

Buying a property in the Pyrénées-Orientales France

If you’re torn between choosing a home in France that’s somewhere by the beach or up in the mountains – with the Pyrénées-Orientales you can have both. This sunny department is in southern France, adjacent to the northern Spanish frontier (Catalonia) and the Mediterranean. It’s slow starting to be discovered by British buyers, although the […]

Continue Reading

Virtual viewings help buyers find French property

Would you buy a property in France after a couple of virtual visits? Before the global pandemic, virtual viewings would be a rare necessity for Home Hunts’ property-buying clients. However, this year Covid-19 has shut down travel and prevented standard visits. But virtual viewing has come into its own – and to the rescue. “In […]

Continue Reading

Expert property guide to Morbihan Brittany

The department of Morbihan is in southern Brittany. It’s a land of contrasts, beaches, islands and captivating countryside. Home to Broceliande, a forest that’s said to be where the wizard Merlin once lived. Full of beautiful villages and historic towns like Quiberon and Vannes and going back further in time, Carnac with one of the […]

Continue Reading

How to live the good life in France | property purchase finance and taxes

If you’re going to need a mortgage to buy a property in France it’s a good idea to sort something that out in advance. There are several ways to organise a mortgage – either at home or in France. Re-mortgaging to buy a French home If you already have a mortgage or equity in a […]

Continue Reading

Expert Property guide to Creuse

The department of Creuse, Limousin, is in the centre of France. It owes its name to the river Creuse which crosses the area. The western and also the flattest part of the region was an important source of inspiration for impressionist painters such as Monet. Creuse is famous for its 600 year old tradition of […]

Continue Reading


If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS Feed

Comments are closed.