Photos courtesy of Château de St Michel de Lanès
Double rooms: 139–149 euros
Rates include continental breakfast
Open: all year (except closed the week after Christmas)
Saint Michel de Lanès is about halfway between Carcassonne and Toulouse—not far off the A61 motorway. The nearest train station is Villefranche de Lauragais.
Nearby: hiking; bicycling; fishing; canoeing; windsurfing; tennis; Canal du Midi
If you ever want to hide away in an idyllic corner of the French countryside, amongst narrow roads shaded by a canopy of trees, with fields of sunflowers in the distance, you’ve come to the right place.
At this lovingly restored château, you’ll be received with warmth and kindness by Alix and Vincent Panouse (who are also a viscount and viscountess).
They have opened up four rooms of their home to guests on a bed and breakfast basis. Each is named after an historical personage, such as Béatrix de Die, a famous 17th-century female troubadour, and Catherine de Médicis, queen consort to Henri II and later regent of France.
Period furniture decorates each spacious guest room, along with parquet flooring and wallpaper with floral designs or even bluebirds. Windows look out onto the garden or the cedar-shaded grounds. Bathrooms are en suite.
Since the château is a bed and breakfast inn, you only need to stroll a few minutes to the village to enjoy an evening meal.
Your hosts: Alix and Vincent Panouse