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Earthsky Guest Cottage

Bedrooms 1
Space 484 sq. ft.
Property type cottage
Minimum Stay 2 - 7 nights


About the property

Romantic mountain cottage, set in terraced garden with fabulous sunset views.

Set in a wild mountain garden, Earthsky is a rustic domain, offering fabulous sunset views, both from the cottage and from her terraces.

She sits above a picturesque hamlet called Le Lau, in the heart of the Parc Naturel du Haut-Languedoc, an area of great natural beauty, which is steeped in Roman and Cathar history.

Le Lau is one hour's drive from several Mediterranean beaches, and there are rivers and lakes to swim in much closer to home.

Other attractions of this area include exploring local medieval towns and villages, colourful markets and flea-markets, fabulous walks in the Caroux mountains, rock-climbing in the Gorges d'Heric, horse-riding, mountain bike rentals, kayaking, tennis, golf and spa treatments.

There are also some excellent restaurants in this area, and a multitude of quality local wines to be savoured !

Le Lau is a fifteen minute drive from Roquebrun, a large village on the River Orb, which is famous for it's beauty, its' river beaches, and it's Mediterranean gardens and micro-climate.

Fifteen minutes in the other direction takes you to Mons La Trivalle, another vibrant and attractive village, with excellent facilities and easy access to the fabulous and not to be missed Gorges d'Heric.

One hour's drive will take you to the historic cultural centre of Pezenas, with it's maze of back-streets hosting very attractive shops, art-galleries, museums, musical happenings and some fine restaurants.

Close to Pezenas you may find one of my favourite haunts, the Jardin de St Adrien, a tastefully landscaped oasis, created in an old stone quarry over the last 30 years, which has won the prize for the most beautiful garden in France on several occasions now.

In short, Earthsky is well off the beaten track, but also well placed as a base from which to explore this fabulous area.

She is essentially an inspirational rural retreat, well loved by sporty, artistic and creative types.

You will need to be reasonably fit to enjoy this location.

You should leave your high-heels at home,

and bring with you good walking shoes and an efficient torch.

The access is rough and quite steep.

But once that is negotiated you will find a picturesque venue,

providing homely, rustic comfort,

for those seeking a peaceful oasis in the clean heart of nature.

The cottage is comfortably furnished for two people,

and each terrace equipped with a barbecue, a parasol,

table, chairs and sun-loungers.

Here you may appreciate leisurely breakfasts,

accompanied by the sounds of bird-song, cicadas, and wood-peckers

tapping across the valley.

Or evening barbecues, whilst relishing the very fine sunset views.

Later a canopy of stars and the sound of owls calling.

More Details

Sally Stephens
Member since: 2011
Speaks English, French
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
3 May, 2017

About Sally Stephens

I was a wandering soul until I bought Earthsky.

Brought up near Sevenoaks in Kent, I took a year out when I left school in 1973,

and travelled overland to Nepal, and back, a great adventure which left me with a thirst for foreign parts.

I then studied literature at Sussex University, where I managed, by some miracle, to scrape through with a 2/2 degree.

I pursued a career in residential social work for a few years, but never stayed anywhere for very long, always restless for new places and new experiences,

and always pursuing a vision of establishing a small retreat centre, somewhere warm, unspoilt and welcoming.

Sally Stephens purchased this cottage in 2002

Why Sally Stephens chose Saint-Chinian area

I fell for the raw beauty of the Roquebrun area while visiting friends there in the late 90s.

I love the spaciousness and variety of the landscapes here, the cleanliness of the air and water, the pristine nature, the skyscapes, the local markets.

There is much to explore here, and to inspire my artistic soul.

Earthsky presented itself to me, as a location where I may realize my vision of a rustic rural retreat, somewhere where I, and others, could find an oasis of calm, to regenerate, and in which to be creative.

Three dilapidated cottages set in a wild mountain garden, with world-class views over the Orb Valley, were on offer for a song. I thought!

Several songs and ten years later, the cottages are now comfortable and the garden space half-tamed.

So we are open for visitors.

At last!

What makes this cottage unique

Rustic, bohemian comfort. Tranquility. Bird-song (day and night). Spring water tapped in. Fabulous views. Easy access to an area of devastating natural beauty,

prize-winning medieval villages, colourful local markets, and ample opportunities for many and various outdoor activities.

A quirky patrone, who lives on the property and is happy to share with you her love of the area.


Accommodation and facilities for this holiday cottage in Vieussan in Herault

Property Type:
  • cottage (detached)
Accommodation Type:
  • Guest House
  • Self-catering
  • Housekeeper Optional
Floor Area:
  • 484 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 2
  • non smoking only ...
  • pets considered ...
  • not suitable for children ...
Location Type:
  • mountain
  • rural
  • village
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Budget
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Activities Guide
  • Basic Soaps
  • Firewood
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Laundry Soap
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room ...
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Paper Towels
  • Parking ...
  • Parking On Street
  • Sofa Bed
  • Thermos Flask
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine ...
  • Wireless Internet ...
  • Wood Stove ...
  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Cooking Utensils ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Freezer
  • Ice Maker
  • Kitchen ...
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob ...
  • Toaster ...
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 2 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure
  • The en-suite shower-room/wc is light and spacious. It contains a large wardrobe with hanging space and shelves.
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 2
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 Double Bed
  • There is a double bed on the mezzanine, which leads into an en suite wash-room. There is also a sofa-bed in the living-room.
  • Books ...
  • Books - Fiction / Non-fiction
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games ...
  • Radio
  • Stereo ...
  • Video Player
  • Video Library ...
  • Deck Chairs
  • Bicycles ...
  • Terrace ...
  • Golf ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Large Cooler
  • Garden ...
  • Barbecue
  • Tennis ...
  • Terrace
  • 2 bicycles
  • 2 garden chairs
  • not suitable for elderly or infirm
  • wheelchair inaccessible ...
  • autumn foliage
  • botanical garden
  • caves
  • churches
  • forests
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • winery tours
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • horse riding
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • groceries
  • massage therapist
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • mountain climbing
  • mountaineering
  • caving
  • swimming
  • tennis
There is no vehicle access to Earthsky. Cars are parked in the village below, and access is via a foot-path which is steep and rugged. I have a motorized wheel-barrow and will help you with your luggage ! To enjoy Earthsky you will need to be sure footed and wear very sensible shoes. A good flashlight is also necessary. Smokers are respectfully requested to step onto the terrace and enjoy the magnificent views whilst indulging.


Wonderful! 4.8/5 -
(21 traveller reviews)

Canterbury, Kent

Rural Retreat

  • 4 of 5

If your idea of holiday accommodation is marble floors, IKEA furniture, a TV with 2000 channels and a swimming pool - with a restaurant just around the corner and a hypermarket five minutes away....forget it. Rustic is the word Sally uses, and rustic it is. Pretty remote at the end of a valley and up a steep unpaved path, you need to be reasonably able bodied to get up to this stone built hideaway. But when you do, the views down the valley are stunning and the peaceful silence truly healing. All necessary services worked well for us - water (even after a dry summer , it was still flowing from the spring that serves the property), shower, cooker, fridge freezer (vital in the heat), internet. No TV, which was a real bonus! Sally took a load of washing away for us and it came back crisp and ready to wear. It's in a wonderful area, of course with lots to do and see if you do want to venture afield, from lovey old towns and villages to activities such as walking and canoeing. Sally was a helpful hostess and her two companions, who always seemed to turn up at mealtimes, added to our pleasure. Thanks, Sally, for a lovely time.

  • Review Submitted: Sep 21, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Aug 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: And thank you both for the pleasure of your company here@Earthsky. I do hope we will meet again :~)
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A little piece of rustic heaven!

  • 5 of 5

The cottage was a delight just as described and tucked into the hillside in a small hamlet. Simply but adequately furnished and with absolutely everything you could possibly need. Cotton sheets on a comfy bed, wonderfully natural outdoor sitting space with lovely views , comfortable recliners as well as table and chairs. Total peace and it was tempting to just stay put and soak it all up! Sally was always on hand for help and advice about places to visit, but never intrusive. This is a wonderful part of France, beautiful medieval villages, many lovely river swimming spots and the Gorge d'Heric which offered a great walk as well as river swimming. We visited the higher mountains and swam in a lake that wasn't far from villages with a real Alpine feel.. We need to return to explore this area in more depth, there was no time to visit the vineyards but we did enjoy shopping in several of the nearby markets. All in all a perfect break. Thank you Sally, you have created a little haven with Earthsky!

  • Review Submitted: Aug 1, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Jun 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Bless you both ! It was an absolute pleasure having you here :~)
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  • 5 of 5

Myself and my partner were looking for a quiet, away from it all gite in the south of France and that's exactly what we got. We hired a car and Sally, the owner provided us with bikes which got well used. Sally, could not have been more friendly and helpful. I celebrated my 50th birthday there and could not have spent it in a better place. The views from the gite were amazing, the surrounding area was lovely, great Lakes for swimming in and the gite itself was perfect plus we had fabulous weather. I could not fault our time there in any way and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking for some time out!

  • Review Submitted: May 22, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Jul 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: What a lovely review ! Bless you & thank you.
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2 0

Hidden paradise in Languedoc

  • 5 of 5

Sally owns one of the most beautiful spots we visited in France, with awsome views on the green scenery, close to some nice old French villages in the hills between Roquebrun and Vieussan. The atmosphere is absolutely relaxed and clean, you can hear the birds and enjoy the great landscape from the terrace. The cottages are authentic and restaurated with elegance and good taste. Sally is a very kind and perfect host who takes care of her guests. She was so kind to carry our suitcases with her machine and supplied us with wood and a new gas tank. We enjoyed every day of our stay in this beautiful part of France.

  • Review Submitted: May 7, 2016
  • Date of Stay: Apr 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you so much for all your kind words. Your gentle presence here was most welcome and I look forward to meeting you again.
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2 0

Pleasent stay

  • 4 of 5

In juni we stayed a week in this beautiful cottage. In fact it was to short. We enjoyed the nature, the beautiful views, the nice local people, the long walks, and of course the local wine. It is a quiet and peaceful place. Sally is a friendly hostess.

Dettie & Rob

The Netherlands

  • Review Submitted: Jun 17, 2015
  • Date of Stay: May 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thanks guys. It was an absolute pleasure to meet you both, and I'm happy that you enjoyed your time here@Earthsky :~)
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A unique place!

  • 5 of 5

To say it shortly in the first place: we spent two weeks in July at Earthsky, we came with high expectations after studying Sallys announcement - those beautiful pictures! - and all our expectations became fulfilled. Definitely five stars.

Read Sallys description of the place, look at the photos of landscape, views, house: it's all true, it's real, all this you will get when you choose Earthsky. And furthermore you will meet a rather kind and helpful hostess, a person a pleasure to get to know.

To say it more detailed: it is a calm place. In daytime you hear birds and bees, at night there is entire stillness, interrupted just from time to time by an owl or a dog barking somewhere and another one somewhere else answering him - which all the more assures you that you really are in the countryside, far away from cities and highways.

The house is spacious and cosy, you can spend there easily rainy days or cool evenings - this can happen, even in July - without getting depressed. It is furnished and shaped with taste and sense of the locality: solid ancient wooden furniture, french linen bedclothes, high quality towels and here and there a beautiful coloured eyecatcher - not at all the ghastly bog-standard you meet in so many holiday homes. You may not find every modern comfort you're used to - but surely all conveniences you need at your holiday.

We loved spending our time on the terrace, enjoying the views to the hills on the far side of the valley or into the terraced mountain garden that developed under Sallys hands between the old stonewalls. We had our meals there and relaxed in the light shadow of the fig tree until finally the moon shone through the leaves. Spectaculous starlit sky!

Of course you can do lots of other things in the nearest surroundings or just go to the sea - it's about an hour and a half to drive and each village you come through is charming and worth visiting. But for those informations read your guide or, better, ask Sally.

Conclusion: at Earthsky, you come close to the nature of Southern France - in the most pleasant and comfortable way. And you can feel in good hands with the person who put a lot of her love and energy in creating this unique place.

We spent a wonderful holiday there, and we surely wish to come back next year.

  • Review Submitted: Aug 9, 2014
  • Date of Stay: Jul 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you so much for this kind, eloquent and informative review :~) It was an absolute delight to host you here, and I look forward very much to your next visit. Cordialement Sally
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1 0



Prices & Availability

Rental rates

Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event Price
Spring 2017
1 Apr 2017 - 15 Jun 2017
2 night minimum stay
for 2 nights
Summer 2017
16 Jun 2017 - 14 Sep 2017
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights
Autumn 2017
15 Sep 2017 - 30 Nov 2017
2 night minimum stay
for 2 nights
Winter 2017>2018
1 Dec 2017 - 31 Mar 2018
2 night minimum stay
for 2 nights

Additional pricing information

Refundable Damage Deposit £126.33
Cleaning £29.48
Pet Fee £0

The rates listed above are for up to two people.

I charge 5 euros per day for any pet that you bring with you,
on the understanding that your animal is clean, does not wander,
and is well behaved.

Bed-linen and towels are included in the rental price.

Firewood and fuel are charged for according to consumption.

The damage deposit is refundable,
on the condition that the cottage is left as clean and tidy as you have found it,
and that nothing has been damaged.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.
Enter dates for accurate pricing
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Special Offers

Partner Offers

Portable wifi hotspot

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