A white turreted château flanked by pool and terrace, a backdrop of woods and sweeping gardens. Look out over vast vineyards to the royal Chinon fortress – masterful. Neil and Vicki, who live in the gatehouse, are warm and welcoming and will help make you feel at home. At the château’s heart is a big family kitchen with large table and open fire: step out to the terrace or retreat to plump sofas. It’s a pleasure to eat in the smart dining room with views to Chinon. Up winding wooden stairs are six light and spacious bedrooms, two with little turrets for peeking out at long valley views, one with a trio of original oils – guess the famous painters! This is no museum however, the atmosphere is easy – and it’s very child friendly with a well-stocked playroom. So kick back and relax: roam winding woodland paths and build tipis in the gardens, barbecue at sunset, tour vineyards and the Loire’s châteaux, explore by foot, bike and canoe. This is a magical spot.