Agen Mini Guide
Why do People Visit Agen?
It’s a medieval town set in beautiful countryside on the Garonne River. The town is the centre of the French plum industry and is unusual in celebrating prunes during the annual prune festival where the current year’s crop of the delicacy is presented accompanied by processions, concerts and fireworks. You can even buy T-shirts acknowledging that you were there. Agen is also the point at which the Canal des Deux Mers, crosses the Garonne. The renowned mystic, Nostradamus, lived in the town for three years during which time he married and had two children and the town is also home to the popular rugby side SU Agen.
How can I get to Agen?
You can fly into Toulouse
and take the fast train that stops at Agen or you can choose to use Agen Airport, a tiny airport just outside the town. Only one airline uses it for commercial flights and that’s Airlinair who fly daily from Paris Orly
. Other than that it’s business and leisure pilots that make most use of the airport. With car hire Bordeaux Airport
so readily available and competitively priced, many visitors arrive into Bordeaux and make the 100km journey by road.
What can I see or do There?
You can go and see the local rugby team SU Agen play. The team is fervently supported by the locals and the reaction of the crowd is as entertaining as the matches themselves. If you’re there in late summer, make sure you attend the annual prune festival. Renowned as an improver of digestive functions, the local delicacies come stuffed with prune puree (for extra effect!) or more appealingly soaked in brandy whence they become the well-known ‘prunes aux Armagnac’. Around the town there are some interesting buildings to look out for including the Agen cathedral, built in the 12th century and unusual in having a double nave whilst the fine arts museum has a wealth of important art work including pieces by Seurat and Goya. Agen is on the Garonne Lateral Canal which was constructed to join the Canal du Midi to the Canal de Deux Mers. today you'll find dozens of boat trips available there along nearly 300kms of waterways
What Should I buy to Take Home to my Friends?
Choose from the range of prune products and if you really like your friends, take a jar of the prunes aux Armagnac. Eating healthily will never have tasted so good!
And What About Eating out in the Town?
If you want to eat like a paysanne, then it’ll be more prunes for you. The town is famous for its game casseroles cooked with prunes and favourites include lapin aux prunes or porc au prunes, made with locally caught wild boar. Generally, anything gamey served there is going to be delicious, especially as local chefs douse almost everything in brandy as they cook.
How do People Have fun There?
At the risk of getting repetitive, you have to experience the prune festival for which the whole town goes wild but if that turns you off then the town has two theatres putting on regular prune free shows and there’s an annual film festival held at the charity run small arts cinema.