There’s nothing prehistoric about troglodytes in Anjou Loire Valley. In fact a cave-house today is something of a des res! Europe’s largest concentration of tunnels and caves have been quarried or “built” over many centuries in and around Saumur.

The art of living underground in Anjou

A hundred years ago, half the population around Doué-la-Fontaine lived and worked belowground! Cave-dwelling is obviously rarer now, but a multitude of other uses have sprung up since.

Artists and craftspeople are particularly inspired by the mellow rock. An aesthetic setting for workshops and studios, caves also provide a constant temperature and humidity ideal for maturing wines and growing mushrooms!

Add to this eclectic set of tourist sites an old farm, an astounding village, a gallery of medieval stone statues, a museum of miniature carved monuments - and of course places to enjoy hospitality!

So after your busy exploring, you can try the comforts of modern troglodytic life in a restaurant or gîte.


    With wine-cellars, art galleries and cosy tourist accommodation, cave-dwelling in Anjou Loire Valley is not just history! From tufa limestone quarry to purpose-dug home, the...