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Parthenay is in the north west of Poitou Charentes. According to legend it is another of Melusine’s follies, evidently created all in one hit with just one wave of her wand. She was some girl! Well infact half girl, because the bottom half was fish or serpent or something primitive.

Any way credit to her, she did a good job. I was clicking away with the camera every few yards, and not just medieval timber framed buildings, churches and turrets. There was loads to see. On the day we went there were lots of student types dressed up and playing music and giving out sweets or something that looked like sweets. In fact the first thing we came upon was a group pushing a piano up the road and someone was playing it at the same time. There were two markets on, one was a huge clothing market and the other was a small food market.

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The citadel area at the highest point has some interesting administrative buildings and fine views over the surrounding town and the little river Thouet. From one point you could see the long Rue de la Saint Jacques leading down to the bridge over the river with its two towers.

We also visited the church just outside at Parthenay le Vieux which is a fine example of the romanesque style and another stopping point for the pilgrims on the Chemin de Compostella.

This is a great town and the surrounding countryside is also very picturesque. It is  well worth a visit. You can see from my slide show there was lots to see, and I have omitted lots of the photos I took because they were too ‘contrasty’ it being quite a bright sunny day when we visited in May.

We had a good meal, just the Plat de Jour but it was excellent have a look at the restaurant reviews written by my wife.

For posts on other villages and towns in Poitou-Charentes click here.