Rising above the plains of Languedoc Roussillon are the Cévennes – a labyrinth of twisting valleys and soaring peaks speckled with wild mulberry trees. The huge granite massif of Mount Lozère is the highest point in the park with the summit standing 1,699 metres above sea level. The rental apartment home of the legendary ‘Bete du Gevaudan’ - a wolf-like creature that prowled the area between 1764-1767, killing 100 people – still plays host to a whopping 2,410 species of birds, mammals, insects and reptiles including the beaver and the black vulture. A low mountain region, the Cévennes are also dotted with medieval villages and towns, including the achingly pretty settlement at Florac with its grand chateau and Soup Festival, which takes place at the end of October.
Where to stay: L’Oustaou de Joséphine is a pretty fully furnished apartment B&B run by Elisabeth Martz and Philippe Julien located in the pretty village of Saint Frézal de Ventalon. While most of the rental loft is in the house, the B&B also has a treehouse in the grounds, which comes with 360-degree views of Mount Lozère. Much of the food on offer is grown in the garden and L’Oustaou is also a member of the Cévennes Ecotourism Association.
Get there: The Cévennes National Park is easily reachable by train from London and in close proximity to a lot of luxury housing accommodations, although you do have to change in Paris. Once off the Eurostar, head to Paris Bercy, changing at Clermont Ferrand before disembarking at Marvejols or Mende, both of which are on the edge of the Cévennes.