15 Best Things to Do in Saintes (France)

2. Abbaye aux Dames

Abbaye aux Dames

Source: wikimedia

Abbaye aux Dames

Founded by the Count of Anjou in the 11th century and with lots of traces of its original architecture, the Abbey aux Dames was a Benedictine Convent for women from noble families.

Eleanor of Aquitaine donated to the abbey, while Agnes of Burgundy retired here after the  death of the Count of Anjou.

The abbey church is the oldest portion, with 11th and 12th-century Romanesque architecture, with an emblematic “pine cone” bell tower.

You have to see the carvings in the tympanum above the western portal, with animals sculpted in a very distinctive way that is repeated around the Saintogne region at churches in Colombiers, Aulnay and Marignac.

Where to stay: Best Hotels in Saintes, France
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