Farfadine & troglos , Farfadine & troglos©
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Remarkable troglodyte caves
With wine cellars, art galleries and cosy tourist accommodation, cave-dwelling in Anjou Loire Valley is more than just history. From a tufa limestone quarry to a deliberately dug home, the largest concentration of troglodyte caves in France (1000km!) houses an amazing range of tourist attractions.
Marvel at the hollow immensity of the Caves Cathédrales des Perrières. Let yourself be captivated by the Mystère des Faluns, a subterranean tour that mixes science and poetry in the most magical way. Other curiosities include the 16th century statues carved into the tufa limestone at Cave aux Sculptures, and, west of Saumur alongside the Loire, the series of minutely accurate scaled-down monuments at Pierre et Lumière.
For a change of scene, visit the Bioparc in Doué, where intriguing animal habitats are landscaped into the hewn out rock. You won’t pity these zoo dwellers!
Near Doué-la-Fontaine, you can descend into another world at the ancient village of Rochemenier, whose underground museum features farm equipment, furnished rooms, and photos of the last farmers who lived there. The arts & crafts (metiers d’art) village of Turquant is a very modern commitment to cave-life in Anjou. Here, a variety of artists and craftsmen work in studios belowground. In Richard Rak’s gallery at Coutures, southeast of Angers, subterranean shadow and light both inspire and enhance his art.
For a complete experience, why not treat the family to a unique stay in a troglodyte B&B or gîte and a memorable dinner by candlelight? You’ll have a fabulous time savouring traditional specialities - all washed down with local wines matured in troglodyte cellars!