La Solane

Europe France Languedoc-Roussillon Pyrénées-Orientales

Remote camping in the middle of the Pyrénées
La Solane means ‘on the sunny side’ in Spanish, which says a lot about this marvellous site hidden away in the French Pyrénées. Facing south towards the nearby Spanish border, it’s perfectly placed to catch the sun as it rises behind the Spanish peaks. The simple pleasure of waking up to watch and feel the sun’s golden rays as they filter through the site’s chestnut, linden, and fruit trees and across the scenic mountain landscape is reason enough to stay here. And there’s not a trace of civilisation to be seen.

Dutch couple Eva and Jeroen converted the site from an overgrown tangle of mountain vegetation and a couple of abandoned farmhouses into the beautiful place it is today.They cleared the area and carved terraces into the hillside to pitch your tent. Being eco-minded, they collect water from a natural source and constructed solar panels for electricity.

The eight generously sized, atmospheric pitches are all well spaced out and either well shaded surrounded by trees or nicely poised in the sunny. Each has its own wooden picnic table. Except for the large, new swimming pool, there’s just a reception area, a couple of hot showers, and a washing-up area (and a nice campfire area, where guests can mingle at night). There’s no playground, as such, but the kids will love the trampoline or exploring surrounding woods and sploshing around in the nearby river.

Guests can enjoy a leisurely glass of wine on the terrace or join their hosts for home-cooked evening meals and pizza out of the traditional wood fired oven. There's also a steady supply of fresh organic produce in stock here – though meat-eaters will have to suppress their carnivorous cravings as all meals are veggy/pescetarian.

The pièce de résistance however is, without doubt, La Solane's magnificent treehouse. Sitting 7 metres above ground in the loving embrace of a 250-year-old chestnut tree, this feat of eco-engineering sleeps a family of up to 6. It is fully equipped with kitchen, bathroom (including shower and toilet) and even has a terrace for soaking up the breathtaking views.

Elsewhere, there's also a gorgeous, secluded wooden cottage (sleeping 4) with it's own kitchen, bathroom and conservatory. Finally, a caravan-under-canopy with outside kitchen is ideal for that romantic retreat (or you could squeeze in a family of 4). An indoor pool and sauna are also planned, but the owners promise that it won’t impinge on the site’s sun-kissed, natural vibe.

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