The surrounding area is steeped in history with a wealth of Romanesque architecture. Nearby there are medieval buildings, a Roman amphitheatre, museums, châteaux and abbeys. You can follow the 'Etapes de Cognac', which encourage you to explore three separate trails, following Vine, Stone and River. (www.cognacetapes.com).
Jarnac has good public transport with bus and SNCF train links to Angoulême, Cognac, Saintes and the coast, so if you want to go exploring without a car it is easy to do. Let us know if you need a hire car for your stay: we can let you have details of local car hire companies.
You can explore the countryside, rich with the vineyards of the "Grande Champagne Cognac". There are brilliant sandy beaches to visit within a short drive of Jarnac. Royan, Fouras and the islands of Ré and Oleron can all be reached within about an hour.
Towns like Angoulême, Cognac, Saintes and St Jean d'Angely are near at hand and all have interesting street markets. Rouillac is known for its large market on the 27th of each month where you can buy most things from cattle and chickens to fabrics and food, and Saintes has a monthly foire which fills the streets throughout the town.
Stop at bars and cafés and watch the world go by. Call at local markets and see food shopping French style. There is a covered food market in Jarnac every day except Monday and a monthly "foire" at the Place du Château.
Francois Mitterrand was born in Jarnac and he endowed the town with many of the gifts he received during his term as president. These are on exhibition at the Mitterrand Museum in Jarnac along with exhibits of various civil and architectural projects instigated by him. The house where he was born is now open to the public and gives an interesting insight into his early years here.