Les Cardayres, is an ancient stone farmhouse with its own large swimming pool (towels provided), and newly resurfaced tennis court, table tennis, and table football table.
Set within an organic farm in beautiful peaceful Gascon countryside, surrounded by wild flower meadows, it is about 2 miles from the village of Solomiac and about 45 minutes drive west of Toulouse airport.
The property sleeps 10 people comfortably in 7 separate bedrooms, some with en suite bathrooms, some sharing facilities. Additional children can be accommodated on request. It would work well for two families holidaying together.
Les Cardayres has a beautiful setting in the Gers. To the West is a magnificent view of one of the estate lakes, whilst in the distance the Chateau de Tillac towers are visible through the ancient oak woodland. To the East and South are views across the fields farmed by the Chateau farm, which are often brimming with sunflowers during the summer months. It is also at Les Cardayres that the estate peacocks have made their home. They can often be seen courting on the banks of the lake and walking in amongst the buildings.
The location is wonderful for walks, for cycling or just enjoying this part of traditional, rural France. There are bustling markets, historic chateaux, wonderful restaurants and sleepy village cafes. The Pyrenees are an hour and a half away.
Great value cycling holidays are also offered from Les Cardayres outside of the summer months of July and August. Please see www.cyclingtoursgers.com for more information.
Gascony is a stunningly beautiful, yet hidden part of south west France. It is also the land of d’Artagnan, who inspired Alexandre Dumas’ character in 'The Three Musketeers'. It is also home to the hero of the play 'Cyrano de Bergerac', and to Henry III of Navarre who later became Henri IV, King of France.
Gascony is also famed for its 'douceur de vivre' (‘sweetness of life’): its food (it is home to foie gras and Armagnac brandy), its medieval towns and villages (locally called ‘bastides’) nestled amidst green rolling hills, its sunny weather, and the beauty of its landscape, with views of the nearby Pyrenées.
The area is often referred to as amongst the least populated and least polluted area of Western Europe, with practically no traffic or crowds.
The Gers has an impressive selection of medieval churches and chateaux.
The only city in the Gers, Auch, is the birthplace of d’Artagnan, made famous by Alexandre Dumas in his book ‘The Three Musketeers’. The impressive Cathedral of Sainte Marie lies at the heart of the old town where one can find many boutiques selling local delicacies.
There is a country market somewhere nearby every day of the week. You can buy local produce including vegetables, salads and fruits in their seasons, wild honey, locally produced jams and a large range of breads and cheeses.
One of the most interesting markets can be found at Fleurance on Tuesday morning.
The climate and the tranquility of the local area lends itself superbly to a host of outdoor pursuits including a labyrinth of stunning cycle and walking routes. Maps outlining the routes can be bought from local shops.
Children are never short of things to do in the summer. The Gers has many outdoor leisure areas which normally include large lakes, swimming pools, playgrounds and mini-golf. The closest to the Chateau is the ‘Base de Loisirs’ in Solomiac. Others can be found in Saint Clar and Condom.
Golf courses can be found in Auch and Fleurance.
Gascony boasts wonderful food, wine as well as a wide range of smooth Armagnacs. There is also the lesser known Armagnac based ‘aperitif’ called Floc de Gascogne.
To get a feel for how important Armagnac is to the area, visit Chateau Cugnac-Armagnac in Condom.
Gascony is equally famous for its Foie Gras, Magret de Canard, and its melons from Lectoure.