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Where in the Winter?

Winnipeg, Canada
5 posts
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Where in the Winter?

We are wanting to winter for a month by the sea in Languedoc. It would be mid January - mid February escaping the Canadian winter. I have looked extensively at Sete (this being our first choice) for vacation rentals but most are quite small and rather basic, and not in the old town itself. We are not expecting luxury and have rented in many different parts of the world. The other problem i have encountered is there appears to be very few with internet and we will require it.

Can someone advise me of some other small towns to consider that would still be thriving and not shut down during the winter?

Or should I start to consider coastal towns in Aquitaine or French Riviera? I would be grateful for any advice. Thanks

Surrey England
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1. Re: Where in the Winter?

You could take a look at Marseillan (the town not the plage) and Agde.

These are both at the other end of the etang de Thau.

Marseillan ville is quite small but has all you need within reach including a good sized supermarket right in town .

Agde of course is the larger option.

Try Owners Direct or Holiday Lettings for properties.

Montpellier, France
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for Languedoc-Roussillon, Montpellier
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2. Re: Where in the Winter?

I rented for 3 winter months on the coast whilst buying a house. The problem was finding furnished accommodation available out of season.

Some of the coastal towns are virtually closed during winter months. This applies to shops, bars, restaurants, etc. Many coastal resorts were purpose built in the 1960's and have no employment, schools, transport etc to attract people out of season.

In East LR, those that are reasonably "open" are Grau de Roi, Grandes Mottes, Palavas, Sete. Further South & West, it may be worth researching the towns from Argeles to the Spanish border.

Try asking expat owners directly if they would do a long winter let. With the current economical situation, there are more owners letting out of season.

Local expat / holiday owners forums (in English) :

Roussillon : http://forum.anglophone-direct.com

Languedoc : http://the-languedoc-page.com/forum

Both have categories for properties to let and wanted.

Winters are variable, but "nice" days in January / February can be 20C and people eat outdoors.

Peter

Aubrey, Texas
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10,527 posts
168 reviews
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3. Re: Where in the Winter?

You might look at Collioure which is further South in Roussillon. It will be quiet in winter, however the tourism website list of hotels and restaurants indicates some will be open so apparently it isn't completely dead.. Perpignan is half an hour's drive. http://www.collioure.com/gb/index-gb.htm Or perhaps somewhere along the coast nearer Perpignan.

Liverpool
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4. Re: Where in the Winter?

Or maybe try somewhere bigger, like Beziers or Montpellier - you will have more choice of accommodation and more likely to get internet access.

Languedoc-Roussillon...
Destination Expert
for Avignon
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13,468 posts
138 reviews
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5. Re: Where in the Winter?

Coastal places we've visited in winter are often fairly closed.

As already suggested, places away from the coast like Beziers and Montpellier are good. Also places such as Nimes. For a smaller town with everything you need open all winter, try looking at Uzes. It has lots of places with character to rent, and broadband is often available.

Perpignan, France
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for Languedoc-Roussillon, Perpignan
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6. Re: Where in the Winter?

Near the Spanish border, Collioure, Port-Vendres, Banyuls and Cerbère have a life of their own in winter. So have Leucate and Gruissan (the old villages, not the new developments). You might also consider the villages around the salt-water lake between Narbonne, Sigean and Port-la-Nouvelle : Peyriac de Mer and Bages.

Paris, France
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for Paris, Loire Valley
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7. Re: Where in the Winter?

I am not so sure about Port-la-Nouvelle or the surrounding area. I was there once in May and obtained a good sense of what the Omega Man himself must have felt.

Here are my, admittedly subjective, suggestions:

Collioure

Perpignan

Cap d´Agde

Sete

Palavas les Flots

Montpellier (not really on the sea but it´s close, similar to Perpignan)

le Grau du Roi

None of the seaside locations will be terribly busy in January but all of the above have winter populations.

Montpellier, France
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for Languedoc-Roussillon, Montpellier
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9 reviews
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8. Re: Where in the Winter?

If the original poster had said - "I want the best place to stay in Languedoc during the winter", I would have said Nimes, Sommieres, Montpellier, Pezenas, etc moving down to the Spanish border.

What they actually said was "We are wanting to winter for a month by the sea in Languedoc."

I answered their question !

Peter

Winnipeg, Canada
5 posts
1 review
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9. Re: Where in the Winter?

Thank you everyone for your informed replies.

We were hoping to be by the sea but Marsellian on the etang de Thau sounds great, I think it is the lure of oysters that made us think of Sete. I am also going to check out Collioure and other villages mentioned for rentals. Should I assume that fresh fish and seafood will be readily available along that part of the coast as well? We have not been to the Languedoc region before and will want to do some exploring by renting a car for days here and there.

Perpignan, France
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for Languedoc-Roussillon, Perpignan
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10. Re: Where in the Winter?

You'll gind oysters in Bouzigues and Leucate and fresh fish in Sète and Port-Vendres, both fishing harbors as well as Port La Nouvelle etc...

Since you'll have a car, I would consider staying a bit inland - if only to be a little more sheltered in case of wind/bad weather. January and February are not the best months to be by the sea.

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