Greenery scampers up the walls of the three-storey stone house with its pretty dovecote. Terraced gardens and woodland encircle it: figs and plums, a duck pond, fragrant rosemary and mint. You can dip in the large pool, laze under a parasol, and barbecue under a honeysuckle-strewn canopy – don’t worry about breaking the silence, your only neighbours are deer. Light and airy with splashes of Provençal blue, the shabby-chic living area has a ceramic wood stove to snuggle by, angled lamps, and a gramophone and film projector in place of a TV. You can knock up a feast in the oak-lined kitchen and dine together on one of several terraces. Candles and monogrammed linen add a creative touch to the two simple bedrooms, and there’s space to squeeze more in with two single beds; one in a bedroom, the other on the landing. The hilltop village of Najac and its castle, lit up spectacularly at night, is a 30-minute stroll. The river Aveyron offers swimming, fishing and canoeing, and there are VTT routes and horse-riding nearby. A creative spot to enjoy solitude and silence – or simple fun with family and friends.