LOCAL ATTRACTIONS

Within 20 Minutes Drive

The Village

Laroque des Alberes is in the foothills of the Pyrenees, 10kms from the Mediterranean coast. It is a 'living village' with a permanent population, schools, and several shops including a bakery, butcher and newsagency. There are also 5 cafes/restaurants in the village. There is a supermarket about 5 mins drive away.

Town 1800s to present day

These are shots of the town and tower from the 1800s to present day.

The Laroque Tower

The Laroque Tower.

Laroque Town Square

Laroque Town Square.

15 minute walk to the cool pool.

15 minute walk to the cool pool.

The Laroque Town Hall

The Laroque Town Hall.

The Laroque Church

The Laroque Church.

The Mediterranean coast

There are the holiday beaches at Argeles and St Cyprien which have all the facilities for a beach holiday and are popular in the summer months. There are also the coastal villages of Collioure, Port Vendres and Banyuls sur Mer which are where the mountains meet the sea-very scenic and interesting to explore especially Collioure with its links to many artists including Matisse , Picasso and the Fauves movement.

Collioure

This is one of the 3 beaches at Collioure - there are sandy areas, which is quite good for a French beach! Other beaches 10 mins drive from the house are wide open sandy beaches which are very busy during the summer holidays.

Collioure Art

The Pyrenees

We are at the eastern end of the Pyrenees. There are many possible excursions depending on your interests. The ski fields around Andorra are about 1.5 hours drive but there are a lot of closer attractions, eg The Little Yellow Train at Villefranche.

Pyrenees

Between Collioure and Spain (and beyond), the Pyrenees meet the Mediterranean Sea. The road is narrow and very windy with spectacular views. Visit Port Vendres - a large modern fishing port - with a commercial fish market. The road makes the Great Ocean Road feel inadequate!

Road to Andorra

This is a shot on the road to Andorra - early Spring time. Lots of snow, fantastic scenery. Imagine cycling this in the tour de France.

View from Yellow Train

Down hill! View from the Yellow Train.

The Yellow Train

A wet day, high in the Pyrenees, on the Yellow Train. Great for the kids.

Spain

The Autoroute de Sud is accessible 10 km away at Le Boulou. Travel time to Barcelona is 2hours and it is 1 hour to Gerona. Alternatively you can drive along the coast which is slower but prettier.

Barcelona

Gaudi's famous architecture dominates Barcelona - just 2 hours drive on the autoroute away. In 2008 a new TVG route will open - Perpignan to Barcelona in 40 mins!

Jean Miro Art Gallery, Barcelona

The Jean Miro Art Gallery, Barcelona. Easy to find and in a pleasant spot where parking is reasonably easy.

EASY WALKS

  1. Turn left out the house and follow the well marked track for approximately 10mins to the small reservoir. Look in and see the gold fish!
  2. Turn right at the reservoir and follow the small water course for approx 10mins until there is a well marked track up and off to the left. Stop here! You have 2 choices:
  3. Walk straight ahead for a few minutes to bring you to a small rock pool - which is deliciously cool in the summer.
  4. Turn RIGHT and downwards along a slightly less well defined path to cross the river, then follow the path to the right and up to a narrow lane. Turn right into this lane and in 10 mins you will arrive back in Laroque.
  5. Turn LEFT and upwards - an interesting, quite steep in places but easy, through abandoned vineyards and cork plantations for approx 15 mins and you will come out to a stony steep track. Turn LEFT and downhill down a windy track which eventually takes you to Sorrede, where you turn LEFT and follow the road back into Laroque (total about 1.5hrs).
  6. An alternative, at 4. Turn instead LEFT into the narrow lane, at the end of which, near a garden gate, the track turns RIGHT and ascends steeply. There are marvellous views over the plain to Perpignan, the Mediterranean and you can even see the airport on a clear day. Follow the track for about 20mins, towards The Domain (hill-side villas), which you can clearly see. Pass a small water fountain and 200 metres further on to the RIGHT is a track (nominally gated) which descends steeply into the Domain. Once you hit the tarmac road, follow your nose downwards and then along a pleasant country road to return to the outskirts of Laroque.

NOTE: Laroque is a popular base for walking in the Pyrenees. The tourist office in the main sqaure has all the maps and details. We haven't done it yet, but it is possible to walk to the Spanish border at Le Pic de Nueglos (which is the tower you can see from our front door) to join GR10 which is the long distance walk from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean.