Accommodation

  • Stone steps lead up to:
  • First floor: Entrance door into vaulted, open plan living/dining room. WiFi. Kitchen (dishwasher, oven, microwave). Cloakroom. Double bedroom with en suite bathroom. Two independent staircases (one on each side of the living/dining room) lead to...
  • Upper floor (right): Twin bedroom with adjacent shower room.
  • Upper floor (left): Library/study (TV, DVD, CD).
External access to...
  • Games room (pool table, dartboard, croquet set, table tennis) with access to courtyard. Double bedroom with roll top bath, en suite cloakroom and access to courtyard. Laundry room (washing machine). Gym. ...
  • Double/twin bedroom with en suite shower room.
  • Outside: Landscaped gardens of 2.5 acres with extensive lawn. Dining terraces. Poolside gazebo. Barbecue. Courtyard. Private parking.
  • Private swimming pool (10m x 5m).

Soulages is an idyllic place where time stands still and beauty overwhelms. The spectacular setting of Soulages will not fail to impress: surrounded by landscaped gardens, there lies nothing between you and the stunning panoramic views over tree clad hills, the deep river valley below and the open sky. These breathtaking views are matched by Soulages itself, an impeccable stone building, carefully restored to glory, which stands comparison with the very best in our portfolio.

Soulages is a house that will appeal most of all to a group of friends seeking somewhere special to relax. The labour of love and attention to detail bestowed on the restoration are immediately apparent and have ensured that Soulages is no ordinary house.

Behind the attractive stone walls, the impressive double height living room exudes warmth and grandeur. Fine antiques sit comfortably alongside plump sofas, rich colourful tapestries and original artwork hang against the exposed stonework, and Persian rugs top the terracotta tiled floor. Fitted with quality appliances, the 'home from home' kitchen is well equipped.  The bedrooms are decorated with charm and taste, and each has its own bathroom facilities. 

Outdoor living is most attractive and easy here. Step out of the house onto the balcony leading to the dining terrace, perfectly positioned to enjoy the views and sky from day to night. It overlooks the pool and croquet lawn which comes with its own quality croquet set.

At the far end of the pool, a gazebo provides a shady spot for relaxing, whilst a wander around the two acres of landscaped garden reveals rockeries, ornamental pond, luxuriant plants and fruit trees, and rose and vegetable gardens. And for those who tire of doing nothing, the owners have thoughtfully provided table tennis, darts, a gym full of top quality equipment and an original and handsome Tennessee walnut pool table.

St-André-de-Najac (1km) has a well-stocked shop and restaurant, which is highly recommended. Due north is Villefranche-de-Rouergue, a bustling bastide town with a superb weekly market.

Continue clockwise to reach Sauveterre-de-Rouergue, its main square the largest in the Aveyron. Cordes-sur-Ciel comes into view further south, where cobbled streets are lined with art galleries. Completing the circle is Najac (6km), one of our favourite villages. Spectacularly positioned along a high ridge, it buzzes with life during the summer and offers a choice of restaurants, shops and sporting activities.

A low stone wall around the front entrance terrace means that younger children will need supervision.
The property housekeepers live in adjacent quarters with their own independent entrance - they do not use any of the house facilities and your privacy is assured.

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Location of Soulages

Locality

Great Things to Do Near Soulages

The area is awash with beautiful villages and towns.

Spend a day touring the area or go at a more leisurely pace and discover the villages one at a time. St Antonin, Bruniquel, Penne, and Vaours - the list is endless.

The Aveyron river is ideal for canoeing.

There are a host of water activities on offer either in Najac or in Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val. Or if you prefer to get active on dry land there is tennis in St André-de-Najac.

The impressive village of Najac is close by (6km).

You only have to arrive in the village and you will see why it has been classed as 'one of the most beautiful villages in France' The medieval village is perched atop a crag which overlooks the valley and river below. Colourful flowers adorn the pretty stone houses that line the streets and during the summer, the cafe tables spill out on to the square.

Further afield, but well worth the trip,

is the much talked about and indeed photographed Millau viaduct (the world's highest). It's about a 2hr drive from Soulages. An impressive work of engineering and art, it will take your breath away.

Sample the excellent local cuisine.

Locals will tell you that only good restaurants exist in the Aveyron. One of the local specialities is Aligot, a delicious dish of local fresh cream melted in a creamy potato purée. The famous Roquefort cheese is just one among an enormous choice of cheese and there's good quality beef, a vast selection of fresh fruit and vegetables and much more. Stock up at markets in Najac or Antonin-Noble-Val on Sundays.

Horse-riding.

See the beautiful countryside from horseback when you try horse riding at the Ferme Equestre de Daoudou near Najac. However, if you prefer shanks' pony there are free organised walking trips in July and August, every Thursday morning at Villefranche de Rouergue. Meet up at 08:30 Place Saint-Jean.

Be close to nature on an organic farm.

Ferme Biologique du Marigot farm at La Fouillade is open on Tuesdays and Thursdays in July and August from 09:30. Children can take part in looking after the animals, making the cheese bread, and will no doubt enjoy the donkey cart rides.

Le Château de Belcastel.

Built a thousand years ago, this stunning fortress rises above the picture-postcard village of Belcastel. Don't miss the fantastic views over the Aveyron valley and a unique collection of illustrations and cartoons.

For fine Roman architecture, abbeys and treasure,

head to Conques, an important staging post on the road to Santiago de Compostela and included in the list of the 'Most beautiful villages of France'

Due south is Cordes-sur-Ciel,

proudly perched on a high rock, with amazing views over the surrounding countryside. Likened at times to a lying dragon across the valley, this town is full of secrets and magic - one of France's unforgettable medieval towns. Art and craft shops line the narrow cobbled streets.

Gaillac and Albi.

About an hour from your house is the lovely town of Gaillac set in the middle of vineyards and the old city of Albi with its famous 11th century Sainte-Cécile cathedral and apocolyptic fresco of the Last Judgement. Toulouse-Lautrec called Albi his home town - make time to visit the museum dedicated to this famous artist.

Châteaux.

This part of France is famous for its castles and there are certainly plenty of them all within easy reach of Soulages, including Villefranche de Rouergue, the Château des Graves, Château du Bosc, the Château de Bournazel, the fortress of Aubin and the royal fortress of Najac.

Try cross-country motorbiking.

At University Moto at La Rouquette you'll find plenty of space to learn or train on motobikes, mini-moto bikes and moto-cross. And if you need even more adventure there's paragliding at Maison des Guides at Cajar.

Climbing.

More sporting adventure at the nearby Roc du Gorp at Bor et Bar with different levels of difficulty from beginners to advanced. It's a lovely spot on the edge of the Viaur river with picnic tables alongside too.

Enjoy the views from the garden and terraces at Soulages.

Overlooking the Viaur valley, Soulages is in a spectacular position with 180° views. To relax on the terrace and watch the sunset is simply magical. Stay there as night falls and the sky becomes star studded.

Have a game of pool or table tennis, or play croquet on the lawn.

You'll be amazed at how competitive you become. For those who love gardens, you will find the garden here full of plants and flowers - an interesting mix and beautifully landscaped.

Take a stroll along the country lane towards St André-de-Najac.

It is about 1km into the village where there is a great restaurant (tested by the Vintage Travel team!) where they have a set lunch menu for about 12 euros. There is also a bar in the village where you can watch the big sport events.

Fouloubal Poterie

A great pottery workshop in a converted barn with the opportunity to try your hand at the potter's wheel or buy beautifully crafted and glazed kitchenware and other pieces.

CAVE AND PREHISTORIC PARK of FOISSAC

Spectacular mineralogy, dazzling works of art sculpted by nature. 8 km of galleries, adorned with magnificent concretions and stalactites, some of which might have served as a refuge and cemetery to the man of the Chalcolithic era (2500 BC). In the prehistoric park, the visitor continues the discovery of human life through its different aspects: habitat, crafts ...

Skiing, skating, rollerballing......

For a great family day out, whatever the weather, try Cap 'Decouverte' near Carmaux, about 45 minutes from Najac. A converted coal mine which has been made into a 1600 acre leisure centre offering a dry ski slope complete with cable cars, zip-lining, tobogganing, cycling, rollerballing, skating and mini-karting. There is also a swimming pool and museum.

Nearby

Towns

Najac 10 mins
Cordes-sur-Ciel 30 mins
Villefranche-de-Rouergue 30 mins
Albi 50 mins
Sauveterre-de-Rouergue 55 mins

Airports

Rodez 70 mins
Toulouse 100 mins
Carcassonne 140 mins
Bergerac 220 mins
Limoges 220 mins
Bordeaux 220 mins
Times are approximate

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