Montmorillon, France

A few months before our scheduled move to France, we were at our nephew’s birthday party chatting with the mom of one of his friends when she asked us what was new. We had met her before at these events and always enjoyed chatting with her. We told her about my upcoming retirement and our planned move to France; looking astonished, she told us her good friends had moved to France just a few months earlier. Wow, small world! She connected us via email and our communications during the following months blossomed into a friendship. That’s how we found ourselves in the beautiful village of Montmorillon in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of France last week, to meet Heidi and Richard, fellow expatriated Washingtonians.

Montmorillon dates back to the 11th century and is known as the “city of books and writing”. It is a beautiful medieval village situated along the River Gartempe. The village was once a center for the production of paper, thus the various old printing machines found around the village.

There’s even a Linotype machine outside the Museum of Typewriters and Calculators.

The village is also know for macaroons, and there is even a museum dedicated to this tasty treat. As we wandered through the village, we found book shops, art galleries, and other speciality shops. Unfortunately, most businesses were closed on the day we visited, but we enjoyed strolling through the village.

The wisteria was in full bloom, and we saw many stunningly beautiful displays all around the village.

As we wandered through the old town past the book shops and up a steep hill, we found an interesting tower that we had seen from several locations. After doing a little online searching, it appears that the history of the tower is uncertain. It is thought to have been built on the site that once housed a castle. C’est un mystère n’est-ce pas?

It is tall and narrow and has a statue of the Virgin Mary on top. There are some beautiful views from this location.

There are interesting shops, galleries, restaurants, churches and much more on both sides of the river, so be sure to explore both areas if you visit.

We stopped in the afternoon for a drink at a local cafe where this cat made himself comfortable wherever he chose.

We stayed at a delightful bed and breakfast called L’Arbre D’Ange perfectly located for exploring the village on foot. Run by a couple from the UK, the inn is clean, quiet, roomy, and tastefully filled with interesting collectibles. Our light, airy room had an entryway separating the bathroom from the bedroom.

It has been so helpful chatting with Heidi and Richard over the months, they have been invaluably helpful as we made our transition to life in France. We felt an instant connection when we finally met in person. We look forward to seeing them again and growing our friendship.

We loved visiting Montmorillon and hope to visit again someday when the shops and museums are open, so we see even more of this lovely town.

All the best,


23 thoughts on “Montmorillon, France

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  1. I’ve not heard of, nor been to Montmorillon, but wow! What a cute, quaint town– it’s definitely reflective of that southwest France charm in its architecture, steeped in centuries of history. Now that you’ve introduced me to it, I’m penning it down for a trip over, the next time I return to France! Glad you had a wonderful time. 🙂

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  2. Montmorillon looks like a work of art itself with beautiful houses, blooming flowers and delightful shop windows. Your accommodation is as lovely as the village it sits in. It all looks very quaint and peaceful, a perfect place to relax. I love the wisteria blooms and the cafe cat. I find this village so adorable and appealing that I’m dreaming of a future trip that takes in some French countryside. It’s great that you found some fellow Americans to connect with. It makes all the difference knowing someone in a place you are relocating to, especially when they know the lay of the land.

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    1. Bonjour Leighton, I’m glad you enjoyed the post and photos. Montmorillon seems to be the quintessential French Village, with so much charm and the setting by the river. I hope you get to visit someday. Thanks for your comments and I hope you have a relaxing weekend.


  3. Oh it looks so wonderful and quaint. I adore that photo of the bike outside the calligraphy shop. And a museum about calculators sounds totally my thing (I work in Finance). What a lovely place to visit, the B&B looks cosy as well and great to start to see the Wisteria out 🙂

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  4. How nice to meet fellow US compatriots in France. Montmorillon is a beautiful town (I love your first photo – it kind of set the scene for your post). Even your accommodation is stunning. I assume on your next visit you will take a few photos of the yummy macaroons 😋.

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    1. Yes, it was really nice to connect with fellow Washingtonians. It truly is a beautiful village; thanks for your compliment. 😊 I didn’t realize until later that the macaroons are famous there; next time we visit we’ll be sure to enjoy them, and get photos. Thanks for your comment!

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