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Domaine de la Sablière

Sabliere is well sign posted and easy to find following the brochure directions.

The site is situated on the southern hillside overlooking the river Ceze and has a steep terraced aspect.

 

The site is split into 3 areas basically top middle and bottom. Due to the incline and tree growth there are a lot of pitches that catch very little sun particularly those at the bottom as the sun lowers over the top ridge at 1600hrs (Aug) 1530hrs (Sept) it is worth if possible searching out a pitch and returning to reception to ask for a change if you do not like the one allocated.

 

Half way down the site is the pool complex and bar Eden. This area has the two pools a bar area serving hot/cold/alcohol drinks and snacks. There are also facilities for activities the site runs including pottery/photography/archery/ping pong/etc and the library. There are film shows, in French, and children’s activities. There are also 3 guided walks and it is possible to book canoe/horse riding and other activities.

 

The pools are both very good, one is heated and capable of being covered, the other is an open infinity pool and both overlook the valley and opposite hillside. 

We tried the restaurant more than once first time the service was very poor. It was worse the second time not only was the service bad but the food cold and poorly presented. So no tip and no repeat custom. On both occasions it was not confined to us there were a lot of complaints. Clothing was the norm in the restaurant but not obligatory and nudity commonplace.

By comparison the ‘snack shack’ at Fauvette which served everything with chips sausage/chicken/burger etc was polite efficient and for what you got tasty good value meals. Wine/beer and hot drinks were available and nudity the norm. We happily used Fauvettes when to lazy to cook or go out for a meal but I would not recommend the restaurant.

 

Sabliere is well worth a visit provided you get the right pitch. You can spend as much or as little time on site as you wish, keep yourself entertained or just laze away in the sun with a beer or wine and the odd dip in the pool.

J&K say feel free to drop by and chat about Domaine de la Sabliere on Yahoo id josephgrun

 

Up date 2012 from Jackie and Steve

Sabliere or more properly domaine de la sabliere,

where ?, ok technically it's in languedoc down in the far south not far from the mediterranean coast, geographically it's in a side valley of the river rhone and part of the trip is a drive alongside the rhone and past some of the renowned vineyards.

Sabliere itself is in a side valley, actually a limestone gorge and fronts onto the smaller river seze, just to the north is the larger ardeche in a much larger and deeper gorge.
So the first problem for us pasty brits is that it's a long old trek from the far north west corner at roscoff...to be exact it's a tad under 700 miles and that is a long haul, we have become pretty experienced at driving in france and can usually do arna in a day but this was definitely a 2 day trip.

 
The site itself is on a steep slope going from river level to the valley rim at least 70-80 metres higher and with a river frontage of around 700m , just downstream is another naturist site (la genese) which i accidentally found by going for a wade/swim downstream one day and luckily finding more naturists on the opposite bank.  The river at the end of summer was pretty low but still plenty deep enough in sections for a decent swim, at the downstream end are some limestone cliffs with a small underwater cave and with some nice ledges for jumping off into deep water. There are 'beaches' but mainly gravel/stones and some kind of shoes are a must.


 

Whats there ?? ok so the site has camping in three distinct zones, one high up and 2 down by the river.  We were initially allocated a site at the top which just wouldn't have worked with our set up and would have made for a steep walk down to the river so we elected to take the list of pitches free and head down to the river pitches at the western end of the site.
Down by the river the pitches are earth rather than made up (gravel) and strongly shaded by mature trees, great for shade in hot sun but gets dark and cool down there pretty fast.  In fact we didn't do very well for sun and weather at all, after a very hot days driving and one hot day the weather went first stormy and then windy/cool with rain showers, bit of a disappointment after watching the temperature there stay in the 30s for the previous month !.
ok back to what's there...usual wash/shower facilities in the camp, electricity if you need it, water from stand pipes and fridge lockers at the shower block.     Shop and restaurant about 10 minutes walk away in the next zone, did notice a small (tiny) gym there as well.  The shop seemed to be either not very well stocked or maybe running it's stock down at end of season equally the snack bar in our part of the camp closed pretty well as we arrived.

 
Higher up are a couple of swimming pools...quite small and to be honest with my wild swimming hat on i much preferred the river anyway.  Right at the top of the site is the entrance, think there was a wi-fi zone up there as well but never used it.

 
Sad to say that i didn't enjoy camping there..why ??, well when it was dry the pitch where we were seemed very dusty and it was difficult to keep the inside of the tent and our kit free of fine river silt/dust  and when it rained it stayed damp for a long time due to the pitch being surrounded and overhung by trees.  

 
The river itself is really nice and i quickly got into a daily pattern of swim and wade down to the eastern end and the deeper water section at the eastern end of the site.  Sabliere did make a good base for exploring an amazingly interesting corner of france, as i have mentioned already the ardeche gorge is just to the north and well worth a visit.  As a keen canoeist i should really take a decent boat down there some time and run the gorge !.

  

To the south is the gard and the famous roman pont du gard.   

The local towns are pretty uninspiring..drove to ales one day, definitely not worth the effort, medieval uzes is much nicer but very much 'restaurant city'.

 
Instead of spending the whole 2 weeks there as planned we gave up after a week mainly due to continuing cold and windy weather and headed over the cevennes into the gorge of the tarn instead camping briefly near the highly popular village of castelbuc--from there we got into the idea of gradually heading cross country 'river by river' jumping from the tarn to the lot...from the lot to the Dordogne..       For our last camp we found a truly great little campsite right on the banks of the Dordogne which although definitely textile was for us a much better campsite than Sabliere.

 
Will we go back ???
Not sure...maybe....maybe not.