Affordable luxury: four of the best self-catering properties in France

Affordable luxury: four of the best self-catering properties in France

*this post is an advertorial in collaboration with Novasol.*

France is a favourite destination among British holidaymakers. It’s easy to see why. The country boasts exquisite wine, a more hospitable climate than the UK, and arguably the best cheese in the world. Even better: a ferry crossing from Dover to Calais can be as short as 90 minutes, or just 25 minutes with Eurotunnel. And then, with your car loaded up with all the games, colouring books and audiobooks you need for a family road trip, some enticing self-catering properties are only a drive away.

From the historic shores of Nord Pas de Calais to the heady, rolling countryside of Aquitaine, France has something to offer every family. Here is a selection of a few delectable but affordable French holiday properties from Novasol. To help you plan your trip, we’ve found properties that range between a one and an eight-hour drive from Calais.

A one-hour drive from Calais would take you to Marles sur Canche, in Nord Pas de Calais.

self-catering properties in France

Marles sur Canche is a restored forge close to the pretty ramparted town of Montreuil-sur-Mer. This traditional cottage with original features and a large garden has four authentically furnished bedrooms, with space for eight people to stay. It’s available from just £340 per week.

Things to do nearby: Nord Pas de Calais is sometimes overlooked when people drive through from the UK on their way further south. But the region has plenty to offer families. The Nausicaä National Sea Centre is one of the largest aquariums in Europe. You can see sharks, sea lions and mesmerising fish from across the planet. Outside the aquarium, seals are a common sight along the shoreline. Nature-lovers can see the coast on horseback, on a trek along the beaches, or at Berck nature reserve.

Nord Pas de Calais

A three-hour drive from Calais would take you to Ocquerre apartment, in Île-de-France.

With a large shared swimming pool and tennis courts, Ocquerre apartment gives visitors a taste of the high life once lived in this eighteenth-century manor house. With four bedrooms and space for seven guests, it’s available from just £521 per month.

best self-catering properties in France

Things to do nearby: Ocquerre is just an hour away from Paris by car. Ocquerre’s visitors can continue the quest for opulence and luxury by paying a visit to the Palace of Versailles. Those in search of natural beauty and tranquility can explore the 150,000 acre Oise-France Regional National Park, whose hiking trails, gardens and castles hold many treasures.

self-catering properties in France

Ocquerre apartment is situated inside this 18th century manor house.

A six and a half-hour drive from Calais would take you to Taulé in Brittany.

Quaint and traditional, Brittany is a French region beloved of British visitors. Novasol’s Taulé holiday property is located in the village of the same name. The house is just a fifteen minute drive from the beaches of Carantec. For prices starting at £436 per week, visitors can enjoy the four-bedroom 17th century house. It’s big enough for seven guests, and boasts a games room as well as a spacious garden.

self-catering properties in France

Things to do nearby: The popular Océanopolis aquarium is in Brest – we enjoyed the day we spent there, and you can read about it here. For history buffs there’s Quimper Gothic Cathedral. Nature lovers can enjoy a trip to the Jardin Exotique de Roscoff botanical gardens, or a cliff walk on the Pointe du Raz peninsula.


Brittany’s seaside towns are quaint and distinctive.

An eight-hour drive from Calais would take you to Saint Amand de Coly in Aquitaine.

Covering both the Dordogne and the coastline around Bordeaux, Aquitaine is a region famed among Brits for its blissfully long, sunny days. The Novasol holiday home at Saint Amand de Coly is an 18th century sandstone cottage that comes with its own private pool. Of all the self-catering properties in this feature, Saint Amand de Coly’s is perhaps most well-suited to smaller families. It has two bedrooms big enough to sleep four. Nestled in a tiny hamlet, the house is available to rent from £549 per week.

self-catering properties in France

Things to do nearby: Aquitaine is a land of adventure and beauty. Visitors to the region can go kayaking along the Vézère river, see the Font-de-Gaume prehistoric cave drawings, or visit the pools, lakes and parkland in Périgord Limousin Natural Regional Park.


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properties in France

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  1. Pam Smith
    March 29, 2018 / 8:12 am

    Marles sur Canche sounds perfect for our young grandchildren. It isn’t a long drive from the ferry and there’s lots to do with children of their age

  2. Frances Sunshine Hopkins
    March 29, 2018 / 9:13 am

    They look beautiful, with so much to do around them! Would be perfect for the kids

  3. Melissa Lee
    March 29, 2018 / 10:36 am

    Saint Amand de Coly has such a beautiful pool area – so peaceful and private

  4. March 29, 2018 / 4:24 pm

    This would be ideal for my vast travels in the next months.

  5. March 29, 2018 / 4:35 pm

    Ocquerre looks like a lovely place to take my children they’re water babies and would love that pool!

  6. Sandra Bald
    March 29, 2018 / 6:04 pm

    Saint Amand de Coly would be ideal for our smaller family of 4.
    The pool would be great for our 2 water babies.
    With all the things to do nearby like kayaking along the Vézère river or visiting the Font-de-Gaume prehistoric cave drawings, it looks like a great holiday destination.

  7. Fiona jk42
    March 29, 2018 / 11:42 pm

    I’d pick the property in Brittany as it’s an area I’d love to visit.

  8. Jade Hewlett
    March 30, 2018 / 2:01 pm

    I like that Ocquerre has a pool and looks like a great place to take family

  9. Lyn Geddes
    March 30, 2018 / 5:28 pm

    Marle sur canche because it’s quirky and spacious and looks like a good place to go to get away from crowds

  10. natalie Crossan
    March 30, 2018 / 11:47 pm

    Saint Amand de Coly has the most incredible pool area xxx

  11. Kim Neville
    April 1, 2018 / 2:23 pm

    I like the Ocquerre apartment as lovely and spacious, wonderful surroundings and a nice pool for my kids to play in

  12. Kirsty Umney
    April 1, 2018 / 8:40 pm

    Wow what beautiful places

  13. Catherine Balazs
    April 1, 2018 / 9:58 pm

    What a fab way to get in the holiday mood! Would love to win!

  14. Solange
    April 2, 2018 / 12:12 am

    I love that Saint Amand de Coly has its own private pool and that it’s most suited to smaller families. A home from home.

  15. Marisa R Foster
    April 3, 2018 / 1:54 am

    Thanks for the chance to win these lovely prizes 🙂 Fingers crossed!!!

  16. Marisa R Foster
    April 3, 2018 / 2:00 am

    Saint Amand de Coly – I love that this is an 18th century cottage and of course the private swimming pool 🙂

  17. April 3, 2018 / 8:43 am

    I’d find it hard to choose between the beaches of Carantec and romantic Brittany, or Aquitaine where I’ve never been and would love to discover.

  18. Kirstie
    April 3, 2018 / 8:25 pm

    Id probably go for active Aquitane. Sounds like a summer treat.

  19. Kirstie
    April 3, 2018 / 8:25 pm

    Id probably go for active Aquitane. Sounds like a summer treat.

  20. Prerna Gupta
    April 5, 2018 / 5:53 pm

    Marles sur Canche is beautiful! not a long drive and so much to do!

  21. Lydia Alfred
    April 6, 2018 / 2:40 pm

    The private swimming pool in Saint Amand de Colyn sounds incredible!

  22. April 8, 2018 / 11:42 am

    I love the sound of the Ocqerre apartment as the pool looks great, it is not too far to travel and it has room for larger families like my own x

  23. April 13, 2018 / 2:27 pm

    The Saint Amand de Coly holiday home looks amazing. It’s superbly French country chic and it looks as though we could really live there! x

  24. sharon martin
    April 20, 2018 / 9:40 pm

    Taulé in Brittany as its beautiful and traditional with great gardens

  25. hannah wood
    April 20, 2018 / 11:43 pm

    Holiday home – Saint Amand de Coly, France

  26. April 23, 2018 / 11:11 am

    All amazing properties! Particularly love the Saint Amand de Coly sandstone cottage, that pool looks very inviting and the nearby canoeing sounds great fun! #MondayEscapes

  27. April 23, 2018 / 11:58 am

    I love France. We’re off to stay in the Nord Pas de Calais at half term – I wish we were staying in that lovely house though! #MondayEscapes

  28. April 23, 2018 / 9:17 pm

    Beautiful photos – as a Francophile it’s definitely got me itching to return to France! Love the ‘things to do in the area’ to go with the places too – great idea. #MondayEscapes

    • Nell
      April 23, 2018 / 9:26 pm

      France is fab, isn’t it?

  29. April 24, 2018 / 1:32 pm

    The bed in that first place is just incredible! I am looking forward to being able to explore France again now that we are much closer for a while! 🙂

  30. April 25, 2018 / 8:27 pm

    There are some fabulous places here that are so much nicer than I would gave expected. Thanks for linking up to Monday Escapes

  31. April 27, 2018 / 1:37 pm

    We love the Aquitaine region so I think that is my favourite out of of the four – although they all look amazing! Fab competition too, I’ll be sure to share this with fiends and family.

  32. April 27, 2018 / 5:43 pm

    This brings back memories of childhood holidays in France – all starting with a ferry and a drive. I’d love to explore Brittany and visit nausicaa too.

    • Nell
      April 30, 2018 / 1:42 pm

      France is our favourite! We usually end up heading there several times a year.

  33. April 28, 2018 / 10:04 am

    we absolutely love Brittany and there are so many gorgeous places to stay there.

  34. April 28, 2018 / 4:28 pm

    I just love the rustic features of Marles sur Canche, I just love France and there are so many great suggestions here. Its the perfect place to visit as its not to far yes so beautifully sunny x

  35. April 29, 2018 / 10:09 am

    I’m going to France next month and can’t wait! Thanks for the tips x

  36. Lesley Prestage
    April 29, 2018 / 11:06 am

    Saint Amand de Coly – oh I can just picture myself relaxing around that pool!

  37. Ruth Bugg
    April 29, 2018 / 11:27 am

    Marles sur cache as my son loves birds and nature so having the Berck nature reserve and beaches plus aquarium to visit he would be a very happy boy.

  38. Jessica steele
    April 29, 2018 / 11:35 am

    The conservatory area in the home in taule looks lovely to sit and have breakfast with the family

  39. Anna
    April 29, 2018 / 4:49 pm

    I’d choose a property in Brittany, as we’ve never been, and would like to explore it.

  40. April 29, 2018 / 6:43 pm

    What an awesome giveaway! We’re from Kent originally and I do miss just popping over to France. I haven’t been to Brittany since I was a kid though and would love to take my boys there!

  41. Phil Bowell
    April 29, 2018 / 8:26 pm

    Love to go

    • Nell
      April 30, 2018 / 9:55 am

      It does sound mega-easy, doesn’t it?

  42. April 29, 2018 / 9:15 pm

    Ocquerre apartment looks great and the pool would really appeal to my two little ones who are both total water babies LOL!

  43. Kelly-ann Smith
    April 29, 2018 / 9:39 pm

    Wow what beauitful places

  44. Claudia Wren
    April 29, 2018 / 10:26 pm

    The Holiday home in Taule looks absolutely beautiful. Such an amazing setting and the fact that it is a restored French Manor house just adds to the feeling of luxury.

  45. Joanne Heath
    April 29, 2018 / 10:38 pm

    The Ocquerre apartment looks perfect for my two who love swimming. Had beautiful surroundings and a few hours from Calais. Fantasti

  46. Lynsey Buchanan
    April 30, 2018 / 2:00 am

    I love the look of Taulé, France I’m a massive fan of architecture and the Manor Home if grand but not brash being tucked away modestly amongst the nature Greenery.

  47. Tasha Hamilton
    April 30, 2018 / 7:52 am

    Marles sur Canche its so LOVELY and there’s things to do for the whole FAMILY

  48. Diane Wood
    April 30, 2018 / 8:40 am

    I love the look of Saint Amand de Coly, it retains the old character but has been modernised, it looks amazing! And with plenty to nearby but being able to go back to the peace and quiet – perfect!

  49. April 30, 2018 / 9:22 am

    What great places to stay. After visiting France last year I’m so keen to return! Great giveaway too!

  50. Sam macaree
    April 30, 2018 / 9:25 am

    They all look beautiful

  51. April 30, 2018 / 10:17 am

    Saint Amand de Coly – love a renovation project, just like our barn at home (but sunny and has a pool!)

  52. caroline mccabe
    April 30, 2018 / 10:50 am

    Ocquerre apartment appeals to me as it is close to Paris and I would love to take our daughter to the Palace of Versailles. The apartment itself looks lovely and we would love the pool and tennis courts

  53. Mrs Sara Brown
    April 30, 2018 / 12:03 pm

    They all look lovely, love France

  54. Mrs Sara Brown
    April 30, 2018 / 12:03 pm

    They all look lovely, love France

  55. Mrs Sara Brown
    April 30, 2018 / 12:03 pm

    They all look lovely, love France

  56. Mrs Sara Brown
    April 30, 2018 / 12:03 pm

    They all look lovely, love France

  57. Laura
    April 30, 2018 / 12:15 pm


  58. Katie walters
    April 30, 2018 / 1:50 pm

    Marles sur canche sounds great. The sea life centre and seals on the beach would be so appealing to my children

  59. Keith Embleton
    April 30, 2018 / 3:11 pm

    Some of the properties are great. Would love to go.

  60. April 30, 2018 / 4:05 pm

    So many fantastic options! I can’t believe that Marles sur Canche starts at £340 per week! I’m trying to talk my husband into the journey – lovely to have so many options so close!

  61. melanie stirling
    April 30, 2018 / 4:25 pm

    The Marles sur Canche appeals to me.Not only is it very beautiful and have lovely gardens,it has ground floor bedrooms and bathrooms which I need as my mobilty problems mean I can’t climb stairs.

  62. Dave Mills
    April 30, 2018 / 6:03 pm

    Fantastic prize

  63. Cat Sims
    April 30, 2018 / 7:04 pm

    The sunlight and the chance to lie by the pool!

  64. Cat Sims
    April 30, 2018 / 7:04 pm

    The sunlight and the chance to lie by the pool!

  65. April 30, 2018 / 7:48 pm

    Wow there are some really beautiful properties here! And I love France and really want to try to get there this year if we can squeeze it in.

  66. Victoria Hanratty
    April 30, 2018 / 7:59 pm

    Would love to win this amazing prize

  67. April 30, 2018 / 8:18 pm

    I love the Holiday home – Saint Amand de Coly, France, the view from the pool is amazing

  68. April 30, 2018 / 8:19 pm

    I love the Holiday home – Saint Amand de Coly, France, the view from the pool is amazing

  69. Emily Smith
    April 30, 2018 / 8:58 pm

    Apartment – Ocquerre, France looks lovely. It’s a grand building with beautiful features. It also has gorgeous grounds and a pool.

  70. Joshua Brown
    May 1, 2018 / 7:39 am

    What a fabulous article. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this.

  71. Lauren
    May 1, 2018 / 9:07 am

    Wow Marles sur Canche is so close to calais

  72. Lian Hunt
    May 1, 2018 / 3:15 pm

    Ocquerre apartment reminds me of a school trip from many years ago, it looks beautiful

  73. Laura Theobald
    May 1, 2018 / 8:17 pm

    They all look so beautiful and relaxing.

  74. May 1, 2018 / 9:53 pm

    I love the look of the Ocquerre apartment because of the space and pool – it would tire my boys out!

  75. Erika
    May 1, 2018 / 10:09 pm

    They all look fab

  76. Sarah
    May 2, 2018 / 10:36 am

    I love France so much so love reading your suggestions. Can’t wait to take my sons for a holiday to France.

  77. J howard
    May 2, 2018 / 5:46 pm

    I love the sound of the Ocquerre apartments – my little girl loves swimming and that would be fantastic

  78. Kate
    May 2, 2018 / 5:53 pm

    Ill definitely consider these places as we have dipped our toes into France alway love it. Useful to know travel times. My fave hol ever was in Eymet near Bergerac. Hope I win your comp too!

  79. May 2, 2018 / 11:20 pm

    They all look great, but I think the Ocquerre apartment in Île-de-France is where I’d most like to go.

  80. Sarah Ebner
    May 2, 2018 / 11:20 pm

    Ocquerre with the pool – and a trip to Versailles!

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