The commune comprises two villages inhabited since prehistoric times : Sansais perched on a hedged hillside and La Garette clinging to the side of a hillock (31 m high mound), in the heart of the Poitevin Marshes. Henri III of Navarre, the future good king Henry IVon a stay in Mursay in 1576, hunting and fishing at La Garette. Ten years later, back in the Poitevin Marsheshe writes that ...
Among these deserts are a thousand gardens where one goes only by boat... Of fish, it is a monstrosity that the quantity, the size and the price...
Classified to almost 90 %, La Garettefrom the French guéret meaning fallow land, is a street village developed between hillside and marshThis is the area between the Port Jaguin and the Port de la Vieille Auberge, known as the Grand Port. Until the middle of the 19th century, the latter was an important transit port for goods between the Bas-Poitou (north) and the Saintonge (south). In 1995, as part of theOperation Grand Site, Rue des Gravéesthe main artery between the hillside and the water, has been entirely restored with a herbarium embedded in its soil. La Garette is an ideal starting point to discover the wet marsh on foot, by boat, by bike or on horseback.
What to see in Sansais-la Garette?
The majority of the houses are from the 2nd Empire, when the wet marsh is drained, wooded, cultivated and grazed. The farmThe structure of the house, called a hut, is located between the street and the water. Rural architecture is linked to the local geology (limestone from the hillside, poplar framework, tiles known as "tiges de botte", etc.). Under the same roof, the building is divided into two more or less equal parts (the dwelling house, then the stable, the hayloft and the shed known as a balet).
Other sights to see:
In Sansais :
- The church of Saint Vincent of the 19th century
- The town hall-school of the 19th century
- The windmills at La Grande Versenne and at the Champ du Moulin
- Two laundries at the communal pond (a large one with an inverted tin roof so that rainwater drains into a smaller open one, then into a ditch extending into the meadow - restoration project for one of them)
In La Garette :
- The economic and tourist area of the Interregional Park of the Marais Poitevin developed in the old sawmill (platform for the Green Venice Boat Breeders' Association and picnic and recreation areas)
- The House of the Horse
- The Sansais-La Garette tourist complex
- The dead end of the ovens (three private bread ovens, two of which are visible from the street)
- The Chail dam and sluiceway
- The learning path (30 panels describing the flora and fauna of the market garden on an 800-metre circuit, with the possibility of connecting with a mobile phone thanks to the terminals on the display stands).