South West France - Things to do near Le Phénix
Le Phénix is halfway between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic coasts and also the same distance from the Pyrenees. It provides a wonderful opportunity to explore the region full of history and delicious local produce, Foie Gras, confit of Duck and Goose and wild mushrooms. The locals will warmly welcome you when you visit the numerous vineyards and the cultural and historical sites.
The lake, Lac des Auzerels, about 4km from Le Phénix, has a fitness trail, cycling and walking path, and fishing. There is also an open air swimming pool in the summer.
Horse Riding & Treking
The riding stables in Rabastens offer daily and weekly beginners and advanced courses for 5 years old and up with both horses and ponies.
The outdoor tennis courts are at Rabastens (hard courts) and Couffeloux (clay);there is one covered indoor court at Couffouleux. Planète Obade at Rivières (about 25km from Le Phénix) is a multi-activity waterside leisure park. Available all year round is a 6 hole golf course, tennis, mini golf, all road and mountain biking. During the summer is canoeing, kayaking, pedalos, windsurfing and sailing and subject to regulatory requirements jet skiing and single-handed sailing.
Jardins des Martels
Walkers and hikers are treated to an ancient network of footpaths and trails just begging to be trodden from the very easy (2.5 km) to the hard (26 km)!
There are also numerous cycle routes and golf courses (see golf page) in the local area.
The Gardens, Jardins des Martels at Giroussens, are beautiful and cover 3.5 ha with over 2,000 varieties of plants from the 5 continents. Many ponds overrun with rustic and exotic water lilies. Tropical greenhouses with dates, bananas and tree ferns. There is also a mini farm with many animals living semi-free in herds: fallow deer, Senegal and Angora goats, Chinese ponies and pigs and ornamental chickens and ducks. Make your journey to the garden part of the fun with the narrow gauge railway from St Lieux les Lavaur.
Open from Easter to the end of October.
There is an observatory at St Caprais, 2km away for star lovers and in August holds 'shooting star' evenings.
For the more adventurous there is ULM flying at Gaillac!
Vineyards abound and Gaillac winemakers have developed a range of quality wines over the years by careful selection of land, grape varieties and vinification techniques. Worth trying are the individual grape varieties which are typical and full of character: white varieties Mauzac and Loin de l'Oeil, and red varieties Duras and Braucol.