Montcuq Accommodations - Farmhouse - 1800 sq ft / 167 sq m
'We had a brilliant time!' Our beaming visitors say Béral is the perfect getaway for adults and for kids. The traditional 18th-century farmhouse in white Quercy stone is matched by the splendour of its private pool, large terrace with ping-pong & barbeque, orchard and exquisite setting. All has been sensitively restored to be characterful but with modern conveniences. The property is set into the side of a hill, with everything facing south; the terrace, pool and gardens are spread out to give wonderful views over the fields of sunflowers.
Inside, the farmhouse has a large main living room, with stone and whitewashed walls, a traditional corner kitchen and a beamed open fireplace. To either side are delightful bedrooms, one with a double bed, the other with a king and a cot if needed. All the rooms have views over the valley. The upstairs bathroom has a hipbath with a shower, and a toilet. Downstairs are two more bedrooms - both with antique floor tiles and two single beds - and a second bathroom. The house has been tastefully restored to retain all its ancient character, but with modern facilities throughout.
The house is particularly well laid out for a single family or two families together. But the upper floor is also fantastic for a couple traveling alone.
There are too many attractions in the area to suggest more than a few. Among the distinctive villages, Lascabanes has beautiful flowers and a lovely church; Lauzerte, high on a hill, a carefully restored bastide with a remarkable town square and good festivals; Saint-Cirq Lapopie, a 45-minute drive up the Lot, is the most famous village of the area, a medieval town in a spectacular cliffside setting hanging over the river - good restaurants too; Montpezat-de-Quercy has a beautiful arcaded square, and half-timbered houses. Rocamadour is not far away. Figeac is well worth a visit, with its museum to Champollion, who cracked the code of the Rosetta Stone.
With the porous limestone prevalent on the causse, there are important caves in the area. The most famous is the huge underground village of Peche Merle, with its prehistoric paintings and traces of early man (up the Célé river from Cahors).
The most well-known museums in the area include the Toulouse Lautrec museum in Albi (which also has a wonderful red-brick cathedral), the Musée des Beaux Arts in Agen, and the Musée d'Ingres in Montaubon. There are many other types of museum covering every aspect of Quercy life.
Among the cathedrals and abbeys, apart from Albi, you might consider driving to the wonderful abbey at Moissac, which also has a stunning set of well-preserved cloisters.
'I thought I would drop you a line to let you know what a wonderful time my family and I had at Béral. You are truly lucky to own such a beautiful house set in picturesque countryside. We all felt that the improvements you had made complimented the house and were in keeping with its origins. We all felt so relaxed and extremely sad when our week came to an end - no-one wanted to leave. Many, many thanks for letting us experience Béral.'
'We had a brilliant time while we were at Béral. It was the first time we have visited this area and were bowled over. The house was a perfect place to put your feet up and catch up with your reading.... Carol loved the Sunday market at Montcuq. Most of all the boys enjoyed jumping in and out of the pool!'