House in Villeneuve Les Corbieres, Corbiere Hills, Narbonne, Aude, Languedoc-Roussillon, France - Non-Smokers Only, No Pets, Please
About John McGraw
Together and separately, we have lived in several parts of the world -- France, Germany, South Africa, Sri Lanka, the Caribbean, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Okinawa, Central America. In the end, we find the Corbieres positively enchanting. Although our present careers keep us USA-bound, we hope to change that and make the permanent move across the water. Any suggestions on how to make that happen are most welcome. Now . . . we need to find a suitable photo with the both of us . . .
John McGraw purchased this House in 2000
Why John McGraw chose Villeneuve-les-Corbières
For us, finding Maison Marcelin was completely unexpected. We were Americans on our second visit to Southern France -- the first being a rather typical road trip in and around Provence -- attending a conference in Perpignan in 2000. We had no intention of purchasing any kind of property. We were looking solely as an excuse to have a somewhat guided tour of the area by someone local but not in the tourist industry. But once we saw the house, the village, and the surrounding area, we knew we wanted ties in this community. Initially we resisted renting the house, because we have such a strong, personal connection. But friends and family have convinced us to view renting as a way to share this wonderful experience with others of similar temperament.
Check-in: 3:00 PM
Check-out: 10:00 AM
100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
The nearest beaches are about 40 minutes away at La Franqui or Leucate. Both have all amenities, including wind surfing rentals. Leucate tends to have better wind surfing conditions, because La Franqui is somewhat sheltered by the Leucate headland to its south. Many other beach areas lay all up and down the coast. The lovely seaside community of Collioure is a little over an hour away. This is where the Pyrenees meet the sea. Collioure and others to the south are well worth a day trip.
Although located on a main route, public transportation to Villeneuve les Corbières is limited. A car is a virtual necessity. Contact owner for detailed driving information.
Airports & driving times:
Barcelona 3 hours Major airlines
Carcassonne 1 hour Ryanair
Girona 1.75 hours Ryanair
Montpellier 1.5 hours Major airlines
Perpignan 1 hour Ryanair
Toulouse 2.5 hours Major airlines
Arles 2 hours
Avignon 2.25 hours
Barcelona 2.5 hours
Béziers 1 hour
Carcassonne 1 hour
Collioure 1.25 hours
Figueres 1.5 hours
La Franqui 40 min
Lagrasse 45 min
Lastours 1.25 hours
Les Angles 2 hours
Leucate 40 min
Lezignan 45 min
Montpellier 1.5 hours
Narbonne 45 min
Perpignan 1 hour
Peyreperteuse 45 min
Pont du Gard 2 hours
Queribus 40 min
Sete 1.5 hours
The Corbieres are full of natural delights and breathtaking sights -- rocky-cragged mountains, garrigue covered hillsides, river gorges, towering limestone cliffs, rich/fertile vineyards, and expansive vistas. The rich Cathar history feels like it was here just yesterday, even though Queribus (among the more than 12 other castles including Carcassonne) surrendered to Louis IX (Saint-Louis) in 1255. Additional medieval sights include L'Abbaye de Fontfroide, Lagrasse (which dates from Charlemagne), and Rennes-le-Chateau (with a Roman ancestry). One can see portions of the ancient Via Domitia -- the Roman road through the region from Briançon to La Junquera. Medeterranean beaches, towns, and villages start at 40 minutes away, but you may find the drive fascinating enough to take much longer, as you marvel at the region's beauty. Villeneuve's central location provides easy day trips to the many locations listed in the Distances section. Please contact the owners.
Step outside the front door and into the vineyards for a morning/evening stroll of 20 minutes to hours. Or take the two-hour round-trip hike to La Recaoufa, a shrine to the Virgin built around 1869 by Father Jean-Baptiste Peyre, priest to Villeneuve and Cascastel. The views will astound you.
For cyclists, the 2008 Tour de France route is at your doorstep. The Tour makes its way somewhere through the area each year.
And do not think that Maison Marcelin is only a summer destination. The autumn colours of the vineyards and hillsides are glorious -- the weather still warm but with the cool snap of the evening. Winter brings skiing with Pyrenees destinations only two hours away. And the renewal of spring will make your blood sing through your veins.
Please come visit and let the owners help you come to love les Corbieres as they do.