*St. Cirq Lapopie--voted the Most Beautiful Village in France by the French public in 2012.
UPDATE: REVIEWS-- we've received nothing but 5-star rave reviews from guests since we began renting in 2012. But most of our business does not come through Flipkey, so you'll have to look for those reviews on other sites.
(Please Note: we love vacation rentals out in the country with pools--Europe has thousands of them. Yet for a truly unique experience of culture, cuisine, history, and romance, whether you're a family, a couple, or a gathering of colleagues or friends, there is nothing like living in your own private home in this fairytale village in this extraordinary region of France. It's a vacation you won't experience anywhere else in the world. And p.s., you won't miss the pool--there's a great sandy beach on the river.)
For just a moment, imagine spending a week or a month in a fully-equipped house in the heart of an enchanting and lively medieval village, surrounded by gorgeous fields, limestone cliffs, and a magnificent river, where you can take just a short walk to artist studios, gourmet restaurants, and wonderful shops, yet live in the delightful and sun-lit privacy of your own home, perfectly located for day trips or hikes or bicycling, to castles, vineyards, markets, museums and more. What you've imagined can actually happen:
Between the Dordogne and Provence, on a cliff overlooking a magnificent river valley, lies the lively, medieval village of St. Cirq Lapopie, a place Richard the Lion-hearted once failed to conquer.
And between 13th Century walls, in the heart of this charming village that time has left untarnished, lies our lovely, newly renovated, fully-equipped five bedroom, three bathroom home.
As you stroll through its medieval gate and gaze at the ancient red-roofed village houses, many garlanded with flowers, you'll imagine that time has stood still.
But when you walk through the old oak door of our home, all the contemporary trappings are there-- from the fully-stocked gourmet kitchen to the luxurious king beds to the two-person porcelain tubs.
Spacious enough for large families, and groups, the house was designed to make even a single couple feel cozy and welcome.
Under consideration as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, St. Cirq Lapopie has been a mecca for artists and writers throughout the past century.
The town is alive with small shops and fine restaurants, art studios, a museum, a cathedral, and more. There's a sandy beach too. You don't have to stray far. And all of this is in walking distance from the house.
Yet just beyond the village environs lie castles and markets, cave paintings and cathedrals, museums and vineyards, and the lush countryside.
You can bicycle for traffic-free miles along the majestic Lot river. Or canoe for hours along the banks of the river from town to town. Or simply walk to the local castle or a nearby patisserie or cafe.
Whether your prefer lazing or action, window gazing or window shopping, dining out or cooking in, day trips or just a stroll to the corner, there is no end of enticing choices in our friendly, inviting village.
If this sounds appealing, then it is not an exaggeration to say that this can be one of the memorable vacations of a lifetime. Please don't hesitate to contact us if you have questions, wishes, or just want a real conversation about about this home in this village. Thank you.
A few more descriptive facts:
1) the house is in the village (that's the point-- this is an amazing living-in-a-gorgeous-french-village vacation, after all!), just off the main tourist route, so even in August (a time my family also loves visiting), there is lots of privacy-- an outdoor private terraced garden is a great venue for eating your baguettes and cheese, drinking the local malbec, and watching the amazing skies, as well as the views over the river.
2) the river is walking distance, and there is a nice, sandy public beach where you can take a dip, or swim laps, in clear, clean, comfortable waters.
3) all the restaurants and shops are in easy walking distance, but it is a medieval village on a cliff (to protect from invading hordes), so some steep inclines and comfortable walking shoes a good idea.
4) the five bedrooms are all very comfortable, all with armoires-- and the bathrooms all have lovely showers with great water pressure. There are also two vintage tubs for a good soak (one in the master bedroom!).
5) lots of windows with great views, the house is a very easy place to hang out in, whether working in the gourmet kitchen or sipping cognac in the lounge-- spacious, airy, and with good sunlight.
6) parking is in the residential lot (not the public lot), so a fairly easy walk from the house-- you can drive right up to the door to drop off your things.
If you search for maison southern france (all one word) or 'beautiful house, mythic village' you'll find lots more pictures and descriptions.TripAdvisor property ID 2316630...Read more
Bed & bathroom
3 twin beds, 2 standard beds, 2 king beds
3 Full Bath (includes shower), 1 Half Bath (no shower)
Beautiful House, Mythic Village*, Couples/Families Saint-Cirq-Lapopie, Midi-Pyrenees, France
Additional Location Information
There is nothing like living in a medieval village in a fully renovated medieval home, with beauty and history at every turn, not only within the town, but within the house as well. The light, the location, the living space, make this a very special place for a vacation with family, for a family reunion, for a couples getaway, or a gathering of friends. The layout, while designed to sleep up to 10 people, with five bedrooms and three full bathrooms, has an openness and comfort that even a single couple or small family can enjoy.
In addition to the great pleasure of having a house in such a special village, this particular house, a characteristic stone house with its familiar red-tiled roof, was built about the 13th Century and has the charm of history (for example, an archer's window from which we imagine arrows were rained down upon King Richard the Lion-hearted in his foiled attempt to conquer this little city), as well as some lovely views, architectural details, and a location just up the street from the ancient arch which draws one into the village.
The house just off the main street, a quick walk to restaurants and shops, yet in the morning and evenings it is quiet enough on the street to pull out chairs and watch the sky with a glass of wine or hors d'oeuvres in hand. In addition it is situated just below the house of the founder of surrealism, Andre Breton, and has a lovely public garden behind it, just off the beaten path.
There is free parking a short walk just outside the Village gate. And as you will see when you visit the website, there is so much to do nearby: from vineyard hopping to bicycle rides, from kayaking to market shopping, from prehistoric caves to nearby castles.... many possible day trips-- a week won't seem like enough time, but even a single day will feel rejuvenating and memorable..
More About This Location
Beach or lakeside relaxation, City vacations, Mountain nearby, Rural retreats, Waterfront
How to get there
Nearest airport: Toulouse, 60 miles Car is recommended
“This might be the best vacation you'll ever have.”
Left on 10/28/2013 for a stay in October 2013 | A Holiday Lettings verified reviewerReviewed Oct 28, 2013Stayed Oct 2013
I had the great fortune to stay in Coeur de Lion in October 2013. The house is magnificent and the location is unparalleled for beauty and medieval charm. The owner has brought it back from a ruin to a beautiful, tasteful home with a lot of “wow.” Coeur de Lion shows thoughtful attention to the details of its ancient heritage while embedding all the modern comforts.
I am particular about vacation houses. I want to feel at home, I want to feel I've discovered something very special, and I want to feel like the owner cares about my comfort and enjoyment. I found sleeping in the bed with antique French linen sheets to be a dream. The bathrooms are a welcome luxury for the weary traveler – lovely bath salts and heated towel racks! The Nespresso machine in the kitchen provides a lovely crema to top off a delicious cup of coffee. The kitchen provides the most sophisticated cooks with all the tools and features needed for gourmet cooking. I would love to come back for the cooking classes they plan to offer (please let me know!).
The location in the village is excellent. With a simple walk to the top of the village through 15th c. France, you can find morning croissants or go out for dinner. There are many wonderful restaurants within a few blocks. The regional food abounds with rich flavors of duck, foie gras, truffles, walnuts and local cheeses. Local markets are a shopper’s paradise for anything from regional Malbec wines to local, fresh organic produce to cook a stellar meal at home.
Charles and Cathy are hosts who know how to exceed expectations. Many guests want support for planning logistics, as well as access to information and advice on activities and experiences that only an insider knows. They provide all that and more. I cannot think of any improvements to suggest. Coeur de Lion is definitely a home I would want to stay in again. I wished I never had to leave.
What a wonderful review. We are so glad you had such a great time. It is a fantastic village, and now that the renovations are completed, it is a fantastic house. Next time, come for two or three weeks-- we'll show you all the stuff to do that is impossible to squeeze into one week, much of it stuff you don't have to leave the village to discover.
We really do look forward to seeing you again. Thank you.
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
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