Costa del Sol
Famed for ‘Blanquette de Limoux’, one of the oldest sparkling wines in the world, this relaxed, French town is also a lovely location for a villa holiday. It centres around the Place de la Republique, a large open square where you’ll find a small selection of shops and cafes. You can amble up and down the streets of the Old Town and see ancient buildings and pretty churches. There’s also a fascinating piano museum to visit. Nearby villages all offer a glimpse into French living at its best, while Carcassonne, the spectacular walled city, is a must visit when in the area.
The central square has a weekly market each Friday, where you can stock up your villa with local produce. In July and August, there is also a lively night market every Tuesday. While in Limoux, look out for the famous sparkling wine ‘Blanquette de Limoux’, a perfect gift to take home or enjoy back at your villa. You’ll also find plenty of supermarkets in and around the town.
The town’s historic square ‘Place de la Republique’ is home to a selection of restaurants and cafes with a welcoming atmosphere. While in the region, be sure to try cassoulet, a rich dish of white beans and meats, that originated in the Languedoc. There are also many wineries in the area that will welcome you for tastings. It’s best to phone ahead and book in. Some can cater tastings to your palettes and even arrange a tour of the vines.
If the beach is calling, travel east to the coastline and you will be rewarded with long sweeping bays of sand. Often uncrowded, take your pick from traditional seaside resorts to wild bays backed by sand dunes. There are also lagoons near the coast, offering great walking and wildlife spotting opportunities.
Limoux is home to a couple of interesting museums. There is the piano museum housed in a 19th century church and the quirky Musee des Automates that houses over 100 handmade moving figurines used in animation before the days of CGI. Limoux sits on the River Aude, which is a hive of activity for outdoor pursuits. For the adventurous, rafting and canoeing are popular options for families.
The 14th century Basilica of Notre-Dame-de-Marceille stands proudly to the north of Limoux centre. It’s built in a typically gothic style and worth a visit when in the area. Don’t miss the chance to see Carcassonne, a hilltop citadel straight out of a fairytale. Complete with drawbridges, turrets, and its very own castle, it’s a treat to wander around.
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