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At a Glance

Your Holiday at a Glance

Self catering walking Holiday - France

Tarn Explorer

Tarn & Aveyron: Rivers, gorges & historic hilltop towns

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  • April - October
  • Please contact us for a quote
  • Beautifully restored historic Le Claouzet farmhouse with 4 bedrooms sleeping upto 8 and swimming pool. Ideal for groups or families
  • A week long independent Self catering Walking Holiday in the Tarn and Aveyron region of South West France. A choice of walks through historic hilltops towns, vineyards and along dramatic gorges. A number of other activities are also possible including cycling, canoeing and sailing
  • Possibility of rental periods shorter than a week outside of the main holiday season (not June, July, August or early September) Please contact us for more information
  • Wonderful historic farmhouse in quiet rural location in South West France with its favourable climate
  • Selection of spectacular and varied walks through beautifully varied countryside in the Tarn and Aveyron, including hidden gorges, sweeping plateaux and vine covered valleys
  • Stunning medieval hilltop towns such as Cordes sur Ciel, plus a host of historic and cultural delights
  • A great destination for families with plenty of sports and activities in close proximity
  • The Tarn and Aveyron is a haven for a variety of wildlife
  • Visit local wine producers to try the great local wine
  • Welcoming hosts who will be delighted to provide expert advice about the walks and the sights.
What's included
  1. Self catering farmhouse for a week with swimming pool, loan of walking maps and walking descriptions, plenty of advice from welcoming hosts
  2. More general information about our self-catering holidays
What's not included
  1. Travel to Le Claouzet, insurance, food (except possible welcome meal), any extra costs - entrance fees

Tarn & Aveyron: Rivers, gorges & historic hilltop towns

Le Claouzet Farmouse is set in the beautiful, undulating countryside of the Tarn in the Midi-Pyrenees region of south west France. It is situated in a rural location on the edge of a small hamlet in a secluded spot overlooking the pretty Cerou Valley. The farm is ideally placed between the medieval town of Monesties and the stunning hilltop town of Cordes sur Ciel. Close by are several other bastide towns and villages, including Castelnau-de-Montmiral. Albi (the birthplace of Toulouse Lautrec) and Toulouse are both easily accessible. Toulouse international airport is a 60-minute drive away and Rodez airport just over an hour.

Hundreds of medieval towns known as Bastides are scattered throughout the Midi-Pyrenees. From high on rocky hilltops, villages such as Puycelsi, Penne and Cordes have kept watch over the surrounding countryside for centuries. Our self catering independent walking holiday will allow you to explore several of these towns as well as discover the three rivers, the Tarn, Aveyron and Viaur that cut through the countryside giving it a distinctive character of deep rocky gorges, steep wooded valleys and high sunny plateaux. 

The possible walking tours vary in length allowing walkers of average fitness to enjoy the ever changing views and landscapes and see the beautiful array of wildlife and flowers, the area is particularly well known for its beautiful spring orchids thanks to the limestone and chalky nature of the land. The Autumn brings the deer to the forest at Gresigne as well as wild boar and a fantastic array of birds of prey.

Find out more about the Tarn and Averyron region

The Walking and activities

The Tarn and Aveyron region of South West France has a large number of good trails allowing both keen walkers and those looking for some gentle strolls to enjoy the varied landscapes. The possible walks on this self catering walking holiday vary in length. Anyone of average fitness should be able to enjoy this picturesque region to the full. Some walks include moderate ascents up and down gorges and hills, whilst others can be varied in length. In addition, there are a number of easier walks to choose from. Paths are generally good, although they can be rough in places.


There are a number of good cycle routes in the area. For the cycling enthusiasts, the Tour de France has passed this area in recent years. The Farmhouse has an area where bikes can be stored and tinkered on. 

Other Activities

There is canoeing on the Aveyron and Tarn rivers, sailing on a nearby lake, horse riding just 5kms away and an adventure park at Cap decouverte (about 10kms away) with water skiing, dry slope skiing, go karts, swimming lake, luge etc - making it a great holiday destination for families. For the adventurous there is also climbing and caving in the Aveyron gorges.

map location tarn aveyron self catering independent walking holiday

cordes sur ciel self catering independent walking holiday Tarn aveyron France

le claouzet self catering accommodation in Tarn France

Possible Walks

On arrival at Le Claouzet you will be provided with walking maps and notes describing a selection of possible independent walking tours in the region. Below is a selection of some of the best walks:

St Antonin Noble Val

Visit St Antonin Noble Val nestled at the opening of the Aveyron Gorge, a beautiful medieval town which was the backdrop to the film ‘Charlotte Gray.` Take the time to visit the Sunday market before walking up the escarpment and following a path across the Causse or limestone plateau. 

The old drovers path

This Walk goes from your rental accommodation at Le Claouzet to Cordes sur Ciel, widely considered the finest fortified town in France. The walk follows an old Drovers path above the Cerou Valley, and then climbs into the old town to explore the narrow winding streets and the beautiful gothic and renaissance buildings, which are incredibly well preserved. 

The forest of Gresigne

This walk starts from Puycelsi, a hilltop town which has maintained a strategic highpoint from prehistoric times, there are both bronze age and Roman remains in the area. This day's walking drops into the forest of Gresigne which is the largest forest in the Tarn and the greatest oak forest in the South of France. The walk passes through  a conservation  orchard, a Roman road and the hunting forests of King François I.


Visit the beautiful city of Albi on the banks of the river Tarn. The city is home to Saint Cecile Cathedral, the largest brick built building in the world. There is also the chance to visit the Toulouse Lautrec museum which houses over 1000 of his works or just stroll by the river and relax in one of the numerous cafés and bars.

Valley de la Jouyre

Head north into the Aveyron for this longer walk through the Vallée de la Jouyre. The walk starts from Najac another historic hilltop town over looking the river and passes classic architecture of the Aveyron region including old mills and pigeonniers. 

The monks route

This walk follows the ancient Route of the Monks, and continues across the chalky plateau, home to much of the Gaillac wine region, where you can visit one of the local domaines to sample the local produce! 


market town tarn aveyron self catering independent walking holiday midi pyrenees France

historic villages and towns self catering walking holiday tarn and  aveyron in France

Historic monument tarn and aveyron France self catering walking holiday

poppies self catering walking holiday independent tarn aveyton in midi pyrenees




Accommodation & Meals

Le Claouzet, set in the rural Tarn region of South West France, is a traditional "Bastide" farmhouse built in the 17th Century. It has recently been beautifully renovated to provide the character of an old property with exposed beams and stonework whilst providing the comforts for modern holiday accommodation. Originally built to repel marauding armies it now offers a warm and friendly welcome!

Living room - There is a large sunny living room, it spans the width of the gite so that you have lovely views out of the front of the house down to the Cerou Valley or you can sit and look out over the tranquil courtyard. The living area is well equipped with TV, Video DVD and radio/CD player. There is a library of books, DVDs, videos and family games.

Bedrooms - There are 4 large bedrooms 2 double one with a king size bed, and two twin rooms. All the bedrooms have en suite bathrooms with both a bath and shower in each. An extra bed or cot can be added to these large rooms allowing a maximum of 10 people to stay in the gite.

Kitchen - The kitchen is large and well equipped with double cooker, fridge, freezer, microwave, washing machine, dishwasher as well as a coffee machine, toaster etc. There is a dining table which seats 10 with ease and this room is always beautifully cool even in the heat of summer.

Garden and Swimming pool - The kitchen leads directly out in to the sunny courtyard where there is a barbecue and eating area. There are several different seating areas within the courtyard to enjoy a drink before dinner or perhaps a game of boules. In a separate garden leading from the courtyard you will find your private 10m x 5m floodlit swimming pool, this is fitted with a child alarm for your family`s secruity. There are further gardens which house the pretty pigeonnier and walled kitchen garden and a lawned area where you can play badminton or volley ball .

Le Claouzet swimming pool rental south west France for walking holiday Le Claouzet bedroom self catering accommodation Tarn France for walking holiday

Le Claouzet rental farmhouse for walking holiday in Tarn France Le Claouzet farmhouse bedroom self catering Tarn and Aveyron France for walking holiday


Start dates are on Saturdays. Other starts days are possible outside of the high season. Please contact us for more information and for a quote. Travel to Le Claouzet is not included in the price. You will find information on your travel options by clicking on the Travel options tab at the top. Please also go to our travel shop for links to some of the main travel operators. We can organise your travel arrangements on your behalf if you wish.

Travel Options

Travel Options

This page provides some useful information and links about how to get to your self-catering farmhouse at Le Claouzet in the Tarn and Aveyron region of South West France. Please contact us if you would like help in organising your travel arrangements.


Self Drive

Channel ferry crossings from Dover are provided by a number of operators including:

P&O Ferries 

DFDS Ferries 

Once in France, the journey from Calais to the Tarn area takes about 9 hours (excluding long breaks). Tolls amount to about 50 euros each way.


The nearest airports to your self catering farmhouse, Le Claouzet are Toulouse and Rodez. A number of airlines fly from the UK, including Easyjet and Ryan air.

All the main car hire firms are available at both airports including:

Car Rentals 



Eurostar and the TGV provide a relaxing journey from London to TOULOUSE MATABIAU changing at Paris or Lille. Please use Rail Europe's train finder to organise your train journey.




cordes sur ciel self catering independent walking holiday in Tarn France
poppy field self cateringmarmhouse in Le Claouzet  independent walking holiday in Tarn France
Image of historic towns rivers and garges self catering independent walking holiday in Tarn France
picture of walkers approaching cordes sur ciel in midi pyrenees - self catering independent walking holiday in Tarn
historic town bordering river in Tarn France  self catering independent walking holiday in midi pyrenees
Historic cathedral at Albi in Tarn France - self catering rental at Le Claouzet walking holiday