School Trip to Chateaubernard & Cognac

Chapelle des Templiers XIIe

A French school trip to Chateaubernard and Cognac will help bring the history of the Charente region of southwest France to life for your students.


The commune of Chateaubernard borders that of Cognac to the east. There is an excellent viewing point over the Charente and as well as the former Knights Templar Church dating from the 12th Century. The church includes a small 15th century gothic chapel featuring a prophetic inscription announcing the end of the world, dolmen at the Combe des Dames, dated 1531.

Around 1139, Pope Innocent II allowed the Templars to build their own churches and chapels for private use. The local bishops had no jurisdiction over these churches as they were generally headed by chaplains of The Order, creating some jealousy within the ordinary clergy. The design was generally simple: a rectangular building covered by a vault, often sustained by arches with a semi-circular apsis, as was typical in the XII and XIIIth centuries. These sober buildings provided significant contrast to the richly ornamented local churches. A few of the surviving examples include the chapel of the commandery of Petit-Mas-Dieu near Loubert, and those at Malleyrand, Vouthon, de Charmant, Viville, Saint-Jean-d’Auvignac, Malatret, Cressac, Tastre, Guizengeard, Angles and Chateaubernard.


Cognac is situated on the river Charente between the towns of Angouleme and Saintes. The majority of the town has been built on the river’s left bank. The smaller right bank area is known as the Saint Jacques district. Some important heritage sites to be explored in Cognac include the Musée des Arts du Cognac, Le Château de Cognac and La Porte Saint-Jacques.


Sample Itinerary

08.00-08.30 a.m. – Continental Breakfast
08.30-08.45 a.m. – Depart by coach for a day trip to Chateubernard and Cognac
09.10-09.15 a.m. – Arrive at Chateubernard
(Travel Time – 52 minutes, Approx. 50.8 km)
09.30-11.30 p.m. – Tour of the 12th century former Knights Templar Church
11.30-12.30 p.m. – Lunch
12.30-12.40 p.m. – Back on the coach and travel to Cognac
(Travel Time – 8 minutes, Approx. 3.1 km)
12.40-15.40 p.m. – Guided tour around the town of Cognac, with time for independant exploration
15.40-16.35 p.m. – Depart from Cognac by coach, back to La Giraudiere
(Travel Time – 55 minutes, Approx. 53.2 km)
17.00-18.00 p.m. – Evening Dinner
Chateaubernard is 50.8 km Northwest of Brossac, approximately 52 minutes driving time.
Cognac is 53.2 km Northwest of Brossac, approximately 55 minutes driving time.
La Giraudiere can supply materials such as pads, pencils and paper for the students.

SAFETY and SECURITY NOTE: Bright illuminated vests are available for student use, and each is clearly marked to identify the child as a participant of a school group staying at La Giraudiere.

Contact us for more information about arranging a school trip to Chateaubernard and Cognac, France: