Stéphane and Amparo have taken over the family’s rambling, honey-coloured 17th-century farmhouse; some old-fashioned touches, and their personal welcome makes it feel more like home than hotel. First to greet you are the sounds of birdsong and rushing water, then, perhaps the head-spinning scent of orange or cherry blossom from the lovely redolent garden. There are two comfortable sitting rooms, one with its original beams, both with paintings, cool terracotta tiles and places to read and relax. Many bedrooms, larger in the main house, are reached by unexpected ups and downs; all have shower-in-bath systems. There are some fine antiques, a few little terraces, and woods and mountains beyond. The largest room has magnificent views of the Canigou mountain, the spiritual home of the Catalan nation; cheaper rooms are quite small. Breakfast on the sweet terrace with homemade fig or apricot jam or in front of a crackling fire on chilly days. Down by the river there are fine views of the mountains and an intoxicating feeling of space.