Monday, April 09, 2012

Coulon, France - June 19, 2011

Coulon lies on the banks of the river Sèvre and is in the Deux-Sèvres department of the Poitou-Charentes region in western France. Although the area has been inhabited for a long time, amply witnessed by the discovery of neolithic remains, bronze age items, and Roman relics close by, Coulon itself is only about 1200 years old. The Church of Saint Trinity was originally established in 830 but has been rebuilt several times, the most recent being in the the 17th century after the predecessor burned to the ground.
With a current population around 2,400 the village's one time importance as a river transportation link faded with the coming of the railways and today Coulon is a quiet backwater largely dependent on tourists and recreational river related activities. Although billed as one of "the most beautiful villages in France", it is one that has undergone a rigorous and sterilizing makeover by the Ministry of Culture and short of renting a paddle boat on the river there was little left for us to do or see. Pretty much a poster child for how to refurbish a village to oblivion. See here for a few more pictures.

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