Down a tree-lined drive between tailored lawns you approach this 18th-century mansion built on castle foundations, now a family-run guest château but run more in the spirit of a B&B. The river Oise slides gently by. There are ten lawned, tree’d and statued acres here and, at the back, a brick-walled belvedere terrace with soaring views over woodland, untamed countryside and river. Inside, wander at will between a gracefully decorated dining room, breakfast room and library, and a sitting room with gorgeous soft sofas. Up the spiral oak staircase are the bedrooms, classically decorated, some with more of those views. Strong colours with floral fabrics stand out against striped or patterned fabric walls; smart bathrooms have jacuzzi baths; clusters of antique bottles on the window ledges and an antique hobby horse add whimsical touches to a formal décor. New owners Jedy and Damien have professional backgrounds in hospitality so they welcome you warmly and look after you beautifully – do let them know ahead if you want to have dinner on the first night. Don’t miss the fortified churches and great Gothic cathedrals.