In September 1878, Robert Louis Stevenson set off from Le Monastier, with Modestine the donkey, to walk the 220 kilometres to St Jean du Gard. Towards the end of his journey he stopped off at the Cévennes village of Cocurès, on the river Tarn, just above the National Park. Here, Pierrette runs the country inn started by her grandmother and passed on to her by her parents. Laid-back staff, warm and friendly, handle all comers to this busy hotel. Pierrette herself is hands-on, running the reception, taking orders in the (excellent) restaurant, managing the wine cellar: a trained sommelier, she will pick you out just the right bottle; her cheeseboard is to die for. Bedrooms, mostly a good size, colour coordinated but not twee, have wooden floors, oh-so-comfortable beds and stripey, checked or flowery décor. The small bar with its cheerful bucket chairs is charming, the gardens pretty, the balconies bright with flowers. The whole hotel shines. Take a drink into the garden or play boules, walk in the National Park, follow Stevenson’s trail – on foot, donkey or horseback. Good value, one of the best.