Videix, Haute-Vienne, Limousin, France
Videix is a small hamlet tucked away in the rolling countryside of Limousin and within the . Parc Naturel du Perigord-Limousin.
It is just five minutes by car to the swimming lake of Videix. There are two beaches, the closest beach has a restaurant, and during the summer there are pedaloes for the children. Ten minutes by car there is another beach with a nautical centre where you can hire canoes, wind surfs, boats and kayaks.
Videix village itself has a 12 century church listed as an Ancient Monument, and St Gervais, within the commune of Videix also has a pretty church and bell tower, and retains its old, communal washing place.
Travel: Take advantage of the increasing number of cheap flights from England to Limoges. Videix is 40 minutes drive from the airport and car hire is available. Alternatively the train stations of Angouleme and Limoges are only 45 minutes drive away.
Where to eat: For a tiny commune Videix is blessed with good eating places! On the shores of the lake there are no less than four places to eat; an excellent restaurant, La Côte de Boeuf, where you can dine and watch the sun setting over the lake, a second restaurant, a snack bar and a bar, Le Soleil Couchant, which serves pizza and curry.
At St Gervais, there is a pleasant restaurant serving lunches and dinners and just five minutes away, on the road to Rochechouart, there is an excellent restaurant run by a young couple who grow their own vegetables and specialize in new and interesting French cuisine. The husband is a chef and the wife an interior designer, which shows in the casually smart and deceptively simple decoration.
What to see: The small towns of Rochechouart and St Mathieu are ten minutes drive away, and here you will find supermarkets, banks, pharmacies and all the other amenities of the town.
The area is characterized by the use of stone from a meteorite that fell in the area and in Rochechouart you can visit the Meteorite Museum. The locals call it Moon Stone.
What to do: Videix is a great centre for walking, cycling or riding. There are lots of designated paths in Videix and there are plans to link these up with long-distance networks and riding stables within 5 minutes. They are well signed, and take you along leafy tracks, bordered by oak and chestnut woodland, and wild flower meadows grazed by the tan coloured Limousin cattle world famous for the quality of their beef.
In the autumn you can gather sweet chestnuts and ceps from the woodlands. There is a wealth of other edible fungus for the knowledgeable to try, but you can also buy them from the local markets if you are in doubt. Other specialties are wild boar, venison, goats cheese, nut tart and chestnut liqueur.