The City hall of Vatan© City hall of Vatan
• 1st-time stage-town
• Population 2,000
• County town of Indre canton (36)
Vatan, with a little over 2 000 inhabitants, situated in the Champagne Berry region, in between Vierzon and Châteauroux, is part of the Indre Department.
It is a member of the Association of French Towns with funny sounding names (Vatan means Go Away) along with Arnac-la-Poste (Cheat the Post-Office), Bouzillé (Broken), Trécon (Very Stupid) and many others; albeit, the town knows how to offer hospitality to visitors and proudly displays its motto: “Vatan… you’ll be back”.
One of the town’s major assets is its vibrant associative fabric that promotes dynamic local community life. The Berry Green Lentil Festival and the Circus Festival are splendid illustrations of this.
It was hence only natural that the Ministry of Land and Urban Planning National Federation of Associations for Sport, Culture and Mutual Aid decided to found a Museum in honour of the local Land and Urban Planning heritage just outside Vatan, on the site of the former home of Ferdinand de Lesseps.
The town of Vatan does its utmost to attract visitors and in hosting the Tour de France its dream has come true.
Saint-Fargeau castel© Maison de la Puisaye-Forterre
• 1st-time stage-town
• Population 1,800
• County town of Yonne canton (89)
A historical town with its 12th century castle, home to numerous famous historical figures: Jacques Cœur, the Duchess of Montpensier, also known as La Grande Mademoiselle, first cousin of Louis the Fourteenth, Louis Michel Le Peletier de Saint-Fargeau, a famous member of the Conventional National Assembly assassinated in 1793 for having voted the death of Louis the Sixteenth, and the contemporary novelist Jean d’Ormesson.
A tourist attraction with its Museum of the History of Early Musical Instruments and its collection, unique in Europe, its castle and its park, the scene of spectacular summer sounds and illuminations, the 13th century Saint-Ferréol church with its magnificent rose window, its Bell Tower dominated by a fine spire and the Sainte-Anne chapel that boasts a magnificent collection of wall paintings, both dating back to the 15th century.
A town to unwind, with multiple leisure activities and water sports on the exceptionally fine Bourdon Lake: rowing, canoeing - kayaking, sailing, swimming, together with equestrian sports, fishing, hunting, and hiking trails through the woods and copses.
In short, the capital of La Puisaye region is well worth a visit.