Every two-week school holiday- which is every six weeks in France- my family and I try to go on a trip in the region. As we haven’t been to the Aude much, it was about time I booked us a little get-away in this versatile department. Enriched with centuries-old historical sites, we could easily spend a week here. And so, we did. The comfortable holiday home of La Parenthèse – Chez Tata Marinette in Bugarach was our starting point.
If you book a stay at the gîte La Parenthèse, you will be sure of a relaxed time. Owners Nadège and Jean are wonderful people who have put their care and love in the former home of Nadège’s grandmother: Tata Marinette. And it shows, because when we entered the cosy house, we immediately felt at home. Nadège’s cousin Cathy welcomed us warmly; she was our contact person during our stay. But the main reason I mention Cathy is that she and her husband Renaud run next door’s restaurant ‘Les Saveurs du Terroir’. And this is a must-visit if you’re around this area and like lovingly prepared, homemade food! Best to ask Cathy for the opening hours, especially outside of the high season.
You can feel Nadège’s gentle breeze of childhood memories blowing through every corner of the carefully decorated house. La Parenthèse has all modern conveniences, including a well-equipped kitchen, a dining table, a living room, three bedrooms with room for eight people and a bathroom. The set-up is spacious and light, with tasteful hints of original decorations. And let’s not forget about the large garden with a magnificent view! It’s the perfect spot for an apéro with tasty local goodies.
La Parenthèse sits at the foot of the mythical Pic de Bugarach in the middle of a tiny village that has been named after the mountain. With its peak of 1.230 metres, it is the highest summit of the Corbières Massif and a great area for all kinds of outdoor activities. Of course, my family and I climbed the peak and did several other hikes around the corner. And even though we were there at the end of October, we had a dip in the river at Rennes-les-Bains. Not because we’re such tough cookies, but because of the hot spring waters in the Sals river. We will be back someday, I hope, so we can discover the region further. Or just sit in the lovely garden with a glass of Blanquette, enjoying the peace and calm of the beautiful scenery.