Are you thinking of buying a property in the Loire Valley of France? If so, where? There are lots of potential villages and departments you could choose. About 6 years ago, I chose the village of Lucay Le Male in the department of Indre. What made me choose this location and what is it like?
The small village of Lucay Le Male is situated in the heart of the beautiful Loire Valley in France. It has a population of approximately 1800 people and is a thriving community. It is the home of a historic railway and a 12th century church. Indeed, the church is at the centre of the village and is surrounded by quaint businesses and commerce.
Located in the village you will find two bakers offering beautiful pastries, cakes and of course a variety of different breads; a butchers with delicacies of the region, several bars, post office, florists, newsagent and a mini mart.
Other amenities include the mayors office, a doctors, insurance office, local garage, the sale de fete (community hall) and sports field. There are many clubs and community events in which you can take part in, and a quarterly newspaper from the mayors office highlights many of these events and clubs.
There is also a quite social ‘learn French club’ where English speakers come together with the aid of several French people from the village to help one another gain more knowledge of the language. The French even learn and expand on their English too making it an enjoyable experience for all.
On every Friday afternoon, there is a market in the afternoon where you can buy fresh veg, fish and other delicacies from the region. The community seems to come together and many meet up to enjoy the afternoon together.
Although this region of France is predominantly flat, Lucay Le Male actually stands on top of a hill, with the village centre on the plateau, although a lot of the houses surrounding this are built on the hillside. None of the slopes are particularly steep, however.
Overlooking the village is the chateau. This chateau allegedly has tunnels from it going underneath the bar Le Dauphin and across the road from this to the church. It was apparently used for the nobles to reach the church in the old times and there are also stories of it being used during the second world war by the resistance. How true all of this is difficult to ascertain, but it certainly adds to the charm and nostalgia of the village.
Although quite a small village, it offers the advantage of being just outside the so called ‘tourist trap’. This advantage provides anyone wishing to settle there a quiet, peaceful life and the ability to experience life in a real French village.
This location also means that the ‘tourist trap’ is nearby, meaning travel to visit the many chateaux of the region (the Loire Valley has more chateaux per square kilometer than any other region of France) is very easy and that there are plenty of other things to do and see in the immediate vicinity.
The village of Lucay Le Male has a very active community, but if your French isn’t that good, then don’t worry because there are quite a few English speaking families in the village or nearby. English speaking settlers have come from the world over to live in Lucay Le Male, from such countries as England, Scotland, Ireland and from further afield America and even Australia.
So, a quiet, peaceful and authentic life can be enjoyed in this lovely picturesque Loire Valley village. Not to mention its central position meaning the whole of France is never any more than an 8 hour drive to its extremity in any direction.