Experience A Languid Summer in the Languedoc

July 7, 2018

This article was written for Annabel & Grace, which is now part of Rest Less.

The last thing I want to do is sound aged, but I well remember the time before we all had smart phones with GPS tracking, and other similar devices we currently rely on to get us from our ‘current location’ to where we want to be. In those days you could easily lose track of your ‘current location’ – due to the sudden appearance of an ‘extra’ road, or the inconveniently placed spine of the atlas. It was during those heady, emotionally charged navigating years that I first visited the Languedoc.

Languedoc countryside & vineyards

Languedoc countryside & vineyards by Flickr user Christian Ferrer

I’m not of an age where I can remember the Languedoc before it became the Languedoc-Rousillon in 1956, but seeing as that’s all been disbanded (in 2016), I’m going to use the name to refer to the Spanish-border-y, edge-of-the-Pyrenees-y bit, with the long, long sandy, sunny Mediterranean coastline. A bit that produces around a third of France’s wines and includes magical Montpellier, historic Nimes and beautiful Beziers. It’s complicated isn’t it? But don’t think about it – free yourself from Googlemaps and go back to the paper version, and then look out the window at the scenery too much and miss several turnings until you’re not really sure where you are on the map, but you can see a winery’s cellar door, so maybe that would be a good place to stop and ask for directions? And once inside it would be rude not to have a drink while you’re asking where you are, and it might be construed as impolite not to ask the local people for directions in a vague way that allows them to talk to you about where they live… which is the most romantic way to work out your ‘current location’, but not always effective. And naturally you should buy some of their produce. It’s only being sensible, in case you get lost again and you’re not close to cellar door or a small, charming, family run bistro this time!

Beziers Languedoc


This sort of travel is what made me. And the summer makes me nostalgic for those times. The extra warmth and daylight hours means less imperative to arrive before the cold of nightfall, and the Languedoc has so many extraordinarily magical byways…

I do appreciate the fact that I can ask the Hotel Gurus where I should end up, though. I have been known to book some real corkers which looked very nice in ‘the brochure’…

Want Luxury and Privacy?
chateau-les-carrasses-capestang This is Where to Stay:
Built in the 19th century, the Château Les Carrasses is a castle and wine estate, turned luxurious resort/ hotel. There are rooms and suites available in the main house, but also private villas, some with their own private pools and gardens too. The décor is modern French – très chic – and there are food and wine events, as well as the choice to go self catering or enjoy the locally sourced pleasure of the restaurant. There’s also a children’s club, a library, an orangery and a tennis court. Rooms start from €249 B&B this summer.
Practical Details: Beziers is the closest major centre to the château, but, if you’re flying, Toulouse or Montpellier will be the airports to head for. This part of the Languedoc, close to Montpellier and the ocean, is warm and sunny, with maximum daily average temperatures at 27°C and 28°C during July and August and still 25°C come September.

Want Swathes of Sand?
hotel-host-et-vinum-canet-en-roussillon LanguedocThis is Where to Stay:
The Hotel Host et Vinum is a chic,16 room hotel close to the beach. The décor includes fun, seaside touches, and some rooms have private balconies on top of great views. There’s a large outdoor pool and an excellent restaurant, complete with an impressive wine cellar where they offer regular tastings. This is a comfortable and peaceful place to stay, with rooms starting from around €149 per night.
Practical Details: Canet-en-Roussillon is close to pretty Perpignan, which is probably where you should head if you’re travelling by plane or train. Then it’s a short drive from there. This part of the Languedoc gets sunshine for about ten hours a day, and it’s warm with it, with maximum daily averages in sunny July up around 29°C. August gets a bit less sunshine and the maximum daily average is 28°C, with averages of 25°C during September. .

Want Country House Charm?
maison-felisa-saint-laurent-des-arbres LanguedocThis is Where to Stay:
If you’re looking for a homely B&B with a sunny pool and walled gardens with shady terraces, then Maison Felisa is perfect for you. With just five rather chic, contemporary rooms, Maison Felisa feels like a relaxed stay in a friend’s French country house. Rooms start from just €130 per night including breakfast.
Practical Details: Maison Felisa is equidistant from Orange and Avignon, and both are good places to head towards if you’re travelling by train. If you’re flying, Avignon-Caumont Airport might be the most convenient, but you’ll find more regular connections to Marseilles or Nimes Airport. The area around Avignon and Orange gets its sunniest days in July, with around ten hours of sunshine a day. July and August have maximum daily averages of 30°C.

Want Magnificence Amongst the Vineyards?
chateau-st-pierre-de-serjac-herault LanguedocThis is Where to Stay:
The Château St. Pierre de Serjac is a magnificent structure set amidst its own vineyards and 200 acres of glorious countryside. There’s a choice of having a room or suite in the main château, or staying in one of 36 self-catering properties of varying size and luxuriousness. If you want your own pool you can have one, and if you want to forgo cooking you can do that too, there’s a fine dining restaurant. There’s also a beautiful spa, tennis courts, boules, a children’s club and both indoor and outdoor infinity pools. Rooms start from €260 per night including breakfast.
Practical Details: Like the Château Les Carrasses, the Château St. Pierre de Serjac, is just outside Beziers, so Montpellier and Toulouse are the best airports/ train stations to head for if you’re not driving. This part of the Languedoc, close to Montpellier and the ocean, is warm and sunny, with maximum daily average temperatures at 27°C and 28°C during July and August and still 25°C come September.

Want a Pretty Port?
meze-maison-meze LanguedocThis is Where to Stay:
Built in the 19th century, the Meze Maison was an elegant townhouse, but has been refurbished into a charming, four room guesthouse on a quiet street next to Meze’s mini château, and just moments from the harbour and market square. Meze is charming, a pretty village grown up around a small fishing harbour and an oyster-filled lagoon. Meze Maison is cosy, with exposed beams in the ceilings and warm colour schemes, and feels like a small and classy seaside hotel. Rooms here start from €140 per night B&B and the owners are friendly, knowledgeable and can prepare your eggs any way you like them.
Practical Details: Meze is along the coast from Montpellier, across the lagoon from Sete. Weather-wise you can expect plenty of sunshine and maximum daily average temperatures at 27°C and 28°C during July and August, and 25°C come September.

Meze Harbour by Cees Wouda languedoc

Meze Harbour by Cees Wouda

Hotel Guru has done your hotel research for you. We’ve commissioned a collection of leading travel writers and journalists to offer their recommendations on where to stay, found out all the important, and minute, details about each property, and then cross referenced that with guides we respect. So if having a hot tub is important to you you can search by that, likewise pet-friendly properties and hotels with a great wine list. To see more in-the-know recommendations, just click here.

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