There’s something charming about arriving to a house filled with family knick-knacks, down to the gumboots and riding hats stashed in the porch. The half-timbered house was once part of the raspberry-hued manoir next door, now converted to a cosy home. You’re surrounded by lovely French houses, but shielded from view behind a thatch of conifers – it feels wonderfully private.
There’s plenty of room in the big, square kitchen with its weathered terracotta floors, beamed ceiling and huge stone fireplace – so even if it’s miserable outside you can be gathered in cosily here.
In fine weather families can spill out into the large grassy garden, running about or playing football among the lavender and hydrangeas – there’s a tree house and ping pong, too. It’s close to Caen and 20 minutes inland from Deauville (casinos, horse racing and sandy beaches) and Trouville-sur-Mer (seafood, markets and spas). Arty Honfleur is near for colourful quays, restaurants and galleries.