In Cinais, pigeons are troglodytes...

To Cinais, a legend

In Cinais, Chinon riding, before talking about pigeons and their very unusual hotel, we can start by talking about a legend.

This is Saint-Martin (316-397), about which there is a lot of talk in this region. He had just finished building the church of Cinais, so he was starting to think about building another one elsewhere. He climbed the heights of the village, and, warning a large rock, he climbed on it with his "stubborn" in his hand (the "stubborn" being, as everyone knows, a small mass often with a pointed, or flattened, end, traditional tools of stonemasons and masons).

And he said he was going to throw the tool, then he would build another church where it would fall.

He managed a superb "hammer throw", as he fell as far as the neighbouring town of Candes.

A little tired from this feat, he went to sit on another rock.

Now the first rock has the imprint of a foot, and the second has taken the form of an armchair.

Hence the legend of the stones called "le pas de Saint-Martin" and "le siège de Saint-Martin", which can still be found in the region.

To Cinais, a legend based on history

Yes, yes... pigeons, we'll get to that!

But let's finish the story of the stones.

Why were there large stones on this plateau above Cinais?

Because it is what the locals call "the Roman camp", and which is in fact a Gallic enclosure. Clever, they had chosen this vast plateau that overlooks the valley.

And the rocks are still there!

If you want to see big Gallic stones, it's not that hard... get in!

To Cinais, troglodyte pigeons!

Ah! Here come the pigeons!

It is true that, for the moment, I have not described anything to do with you. However, the purpose is to indicate unusual places, monuments, or activities, so visible!

Here is a particularly unusual dovecote, since it is a troglodyte!

It seems that there are no others of this type in France. It is located above a shelter, a troglodyte itself, dating from the 16th century.

The pigeon house (also known as a "flee" or "fuye") has 180 square pigeons, knowing that the "pigeon house" refers both to the hole that allows the pigeon to reach its nest, and to the nest itself. These 180 boulins are arranged in seven rows, and are directly dug into the tufa cliff.

By the way, for pigeon and dovecote lovers, I would like to point out that you will discover many things on the well-documented site "Pigeonniers de France", of which here is the address of the page dedicated to Indre-et-Loire.


Mairie de Cinais

2, rue des Palmiers
37500 Cinais

Tél :


Office du Tourisme 
4, Rue du Château
37190 Azay-le-Rideau 
Tél : 02 47 45 44 40



To go further....

Pigeonniers de France

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Dans l'histoire économique et sociale des hommes, le pigeonnier occupe une place toute particulière. Au-delà de sa fonction utilitaire, il symbolisa longtemps le pouvoir, la richesse et l'ambition.
Appuyé par une illustration dense et complète, notamment de très nombreux relevés d'architecte, ce livre réhabilite un patrimoine qui contribue au charme des campagnes de France.
Chinon au Fil du Temp

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Guide Chinon

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Des clefs pour comprendre : l'histoire du Chinonais ; la nature d'un territoire de vignobles, de forêts et de rivières ; son art de vivre festif et gourmand ; son architecture traditionnelle, des maisons à pans de bois aux châteaux en tuffeau... Des itinéraires à parcourir…

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