A huge and stunning converted barn, part of an old farmstead in the green foothills of the Ariège Pyrenees. A secret retreat, a bucolic space of birdsong, cowbells and silence. Heaven for walkers, bird watchers and nature lovers. Empty footpaths, flower-filled pastures, hidden valleys, lush woodland. A place to breathe out. Peace and wild beauty, for grown ups.
A SPECIAL PLACE, IN THE HEART OF THE ARIEGE PYRENEES NATURAL PARK
A gorgeous and fantastically equipped converted barn in a 'secret' wooded garden, specially designed for couples. Light, colour, space (so much space!), big open plan sitting room with dining area and cooks' kitchen, vast bedroom upstairs with cathedral ceiling, huge sliding windows and another sitting area, large bathroom, lovely private garden and 3 terraces. More >>
A BREATH OF FRESH AIR
Maison Grillou is an old farmstead, almost at the end of a forest track with just one other (out of sight) house beyond: a collection of stone buildings and barns sitting in a couple of acres of wooded grounds. At one end, your holiday home, L'Atelier d'Artiste; at the other, the original farmhouse where we live most of the year.
At an altitude of 500 metres, in the heart of the undiscovered and stunningly beautiful Parc Naturel des Pyrénées Ariégeoises, the air here is the purest in France, the night skies are spectacular, and the silence is broken only by birdsong and occasional cow bells in the valley below.
Although you'll feel as though you've fallen off the world, you're just 3 kilometres from the nearest village, Rimont. In spite of its mere 578 souls, Rimont has a boulangerie, an épicerie-bar, an artisanal distillery/bar which also stocks local produce, a post office and a renowned charcuterie with its own farm restaurant. There's a twelfth century abbey, Combelongue, that also has lovely gardens, and the village is surrounded by beautiful scenery.
Wherever you go, the Pyrenees are rarely out of sight and form a stunning backdrop all over the department, with the highest peaks rising to around 3000 metres. Our own ‘pays’, the Séronais, is a mixture of lush green, rolling pastureland and higher altitude forest and meadow, while by car you can get close to the high peaks in 25 minutes and pretty much anywhere in the department in an hour. The whole area is fantastic for walking, with endless well-marked paths for all levels, for birding, for butterflies and wild flowers, and for photography and painting. When you want a chill out day, there are lakes, rivers and mountain cols: perfect places to settle down with a book and a picnic.
Amazing nature The bird, animal and plant life here is truly exceptional, with huge variety and lots of endemic species. More >>
Wonderful walking The Ariège has around 5000 km of marked footpaths at all levels, from strolling to scrambling. More >>
Loads of history From prehistoric caves to Romanesque churches, Cathar trails and the Resistance routes ... More >>
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