Activities for young children

The Play Yurt has its own sand pit.

The Play Yurt has its own sand pit.

Families looking for activities for young children will find plenty to do in the écovallée yurt camp.

Fun and games

The Play Yurt is stocked with toys, books and garden games. Just outside, in the day-long shade, is a sandpit with proper play sand. Behind that is a woodland play area with ramps, stepping stones, a rope swing and other challenges made for younger children.

Across the field, a large trampoline (with safety net) provides endless entertainment for parents and children. Chickens also need feeding. Eggs need collecting. The tractor needs sitting on and the imagination needs to run wild.

Further afield

One of the best places to take young children nearby is the “Plan d’eau” swimming lake in Lanquais. This has a gently sloping sandy beach, snack bar and plenty of shady picnic space. Overlooked by the stunning chateau, it is never overcrowded – even on perfect summer days. Slightly older children will enjoy the water slide and inflatables, and there’s a lifeguard onsite during July and August to watch over the diving platform. (Update: The Plan d’eau is currently closed, but there is an equally wonderful swimming lake a little further away. Details when you get here.)

Family days out

Marqueyssac is highly recommended for everyone. It takes a couple of hours to walk round the buggy-friendly plateau, which has wide, shaded walkways, woodland play areas, a great tree house and spectacular views. You can buy a twin ticket for nearby Castelnaud to make a day of it, but the steep spiral stairs mean buggies are left by the entrance to the castle.

A trip to the aquarium in Le Bugue is also an option, where you can feed the fish and stroke the snakes. Next door to that is Le Bournat, a village where time stopped in 1900. There are craftsmen and women demonstrating traditional skills, pottery and wood-carving activities, restored antique fairground rides for young children, people in costume herding geese and sheep, a horse and cart… And lots of grass to run and picnic on.

You have a choice of aqua parks with pools, slides and play areas, and child-friendly prehistoric sites like the Roc de Cazelle. But you will find somewhere for younger children to let off a bit of steam almost everywhere. The “chateau of games” at Bridoire goes one step further, with a collection of medieval toys that will amuse the whole family for hours.

Baby & toddler equipment

Parents will be relieved to know that they won’t need to bring a travel cot, Moses basket, high chair, changing mat or all-terrain buggy to écovallée, because they are already here. If you do want any of these, please say so at the time of booking, so they can be waiting for you when you arrive.

(Scroll over images for captions.)