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Discover Benelux |  Special Theme |  Summer Holiday Escapes

Silence is golden TEXT: MARTIN PILKINGTON  |  PHOTOS: CHATEAU DE LACOMTE COUNTRY CLUB

Everyone loves children – but just imagine holidays without them! Stuart and Sheila Coe ran Chateau de  Lacomte as  a  family  campsite  from  1993  to  2009,  by which  time  their  children  had  flown  the  nest. Finding the peace of the winter period enjoyable they  transformed  the  32-acre  property  into  a country club just for adults, catering for everyone with  86  touring  pitches,  a  gîte,  mobile  homes and chalets.  It  wasn’t  easy:  “We’ve  pioneered  the  concept in France – it was illegal here when we first considered it,” explains Stuart. Significant legal work paved the way – though day one an official arrived  to  close  them  down.  “Our  paperwork satisfied him, and he left after a tour saying how wonderfully peaceful it was!” Presenting the idea at a Dutch travel show they had to overcome the suspicion that ‘adults

only’  meant  something  sexual.  “When  we changed our sign from adults only to ‘kindervrij’ – child free – people understood, and really took to the idea,” says Stuart. So  what  are  the  benefits?  “There’s  quiet around the pool, no bombing, just gentle chatter and  people  reading.  The  site  generally  is  very peaceful, and the restaurant and bar wonderfully civilised,” he says. It’s worked so well they’re now constructing lodges to sell to their regular guests. Situated only eight minutes from exit 56 of the A20, access is easy. The breathtaking Rocamadour, the caves at Padirac and many more grown-up pleasures beckon too: “The area is a gastronomic  capital  famed  for  foie  gras  and duck confit – to say nothing of hundreds of vineyards producing the celebrated Cahors wines,” he concludes. www.chateaulacomte.com

By the Tarn – and over or in it TEXT: MARTIN PILKINGTON  |  PHOTOS: LES POMMIERS D'AIGUELèZE

Campers at Les Pommiers d'Aiguelèze find plenty to see within easy reach – and not just with their feet on terra firma.

ing pitches, have good reasons to relax within the welcoming family atmosphere of the quiet site. 

“We  get  quite  a  few  visitors  who  arrive intending  to  stay  a  couple  of  days  to visit Albi, a UNESCO World Heritage site that’s a short drive away, it’s a fabulous city.  Then  they  find  out  how  lovely  the countryside  and  villages  are  here  and end up staying for a week or more,” says Anne  Demules,  owner  of  Camping  Les Pommiers d'Aiguelèze. Her family took on the site in 2011 and completely  remodelled  it  with  a  new heated pool, bar, and sports facilities, so guests staying in the mobile homes and lodges they rent out, or on the 50 tour-

duce  them.  “We’re  in  the  heart  of  the Gaillac  wine  region  here,”  says  Anne: “And you can see that by touring in your car  –  or  take  a  balloon  ride  from  just outside  the  site  and  get  another  view.”  With the Tarn just 100 metres away there is a third means of transport on offer to give  yet  another  angle  on  the  country. “Visitors – especially the kids – enjoy activities on the river, and families can even make the trip from the campsite to Albi in  a  Gabarre,  a  boat  that’s  traditional here,” she says. www.camping-lespommiers.com

But even though they can taste the pick of Gaillac’s wines in the bar, they may be tempted to visit the vineyards that pro-

www.facebook.com/ CampingLesPommiersAigueleze

Issue 14 |  February 2015 |  31

Profile for Scan Client Publishing

Discover Benelux, Issue 14, February 2015  

Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg and France.

Discover Benelux, Issue 14, February 2015  

Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg and France.