Dream of happier times in gorgeous French climes.

With fears of the Covid-19 pandemic and its enforced isolation churning away, we’ve never needed a distraction more. And we all know how good property porn is as a method of diversion. This week, we’ve identified the best houses for sale in France. Around 200,000 Britons currently own a second home in France (cheese and bread and wine and garlic has a lot to be said for it, after all). Could you – even if only in your fantasies – become one of them? Fancy your own chalet? A beach house for family holidays? An apartment in the centre of Paris? We’ve found all of these for you and more. It may all be from a distance for now, but

12th Century Chateau, Orthez, Pyrenees Atlantiques
1,150,000 Euros

With its honey-coloured exterior and panelled interior, this sweet little chateau really is the stuff of dreams. In addition to the main house itself, which is currently lived in as a family home with eleven bedrooms, there is also a gatehouse, a walled-garden cottage, orangery, stables and cluster of farm buildings. These buildings all sit in three hectares of park and woodland. There is potential to make it all into a corker of a commercial concern.

Chalet, La Clusaz, Haute-Savoie

Wouldn’t it be the greatest joy to haul the family to your very own chalet for a skiing holiday? This one, in the Haute-Savoie region, has three bedrooms and two bathrooms. Just 200m from the lifts at La Balme, the semi-detached property has a woodburner, excellent internet and wonderful mountain views. The build is so new that there is, at the moment, no interior décor to love or loathe. It’s time to make your mark!

Country House, Lot
945,000 Euros

This golden, edge-of-village house almost looks like it could be in the Cotswolds. Only the French windows, accompanied by their smart, long shutters, give it away. With its lovely main house and 10 separates gites set amid four acres of garden, this place has ‘charming bed & breakfast’ written all over it. To whet your appetite further, there are outbuildings, cellars and a large swimming pool and pool house. Anyone up for a project?

Bungalow, Dordogne
149,999 Euros

A slow pace of rural life continues to characterise the Dordogne region – more or less. Built in 2015, this two-bedroom bungalow in the heart of the area would make the perfect writer’s retreat. The property is unfinished and not yet beautiful. Its layout may need a tweak, but its potential seriously gets the pulse racing. Holing up here, with a maximum of a loved one or two, would be very good for the soul.

Coastal House, Calvados, Normandy
529,900 Euros

With its rich history, landscape and food, Normandy has long attracted artists and holidaymakers. Fifteen minutes’ walk from the famous, four-mile Omaha Beach, this is the perfect French holiday home. The ferry ports of Caen and Cherbourg are within an hour’s drive. This pretty house has six bedrooms, an enchanting courtyard, terraces, ornamental gardens and great proximity to the historic town of Bayeaux. Additional land is available by separate negotiation.

Apartment, Louvre, Paris
1,050,000 Euros

Victor Hugo once said: ‘To err is human. To loaf is Parisian.’ There is nowhere better to loaf than this apartment, located on the third floor of a beautiful stone building. It has two bedrooms, one bathroom, a cellar, a living room with fireplace and a separate kitchen. Near the Louvre, it is in the perfect place to absorb all of the exquisite culture, carousing and cuisine that Paris has to offer.

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March 2020
By Becky Ladenburg

Becky Ladenburg

Features Editor

As the GWG's features editor, Becky has her discerning finger on the cultural pulse. She's also our go-to expert on the property market.