Tips and Inspiration for your European holiday

Australian owned holiday French holiday house

Castel Grand Rue is a 3 storey, 3 bedroom holiday house in Olonzac, in the beautiful Languedoc region of France. Lovingly renovated in 2004, Castel Grand Rue has been a wonderful home away from home for guests from all over the world.

Read what some of our guests have had to say about this Australian-owned holiday gite:


“Sorry I haven't got back to you earlier but we have just got home from Europe.  We  started off in Madrid and made our way across Spain to Olonzac where we had a fantastic two weeks at Castel Grand Rue.  After Olonzac we made our way to Toulouse, Bordeaux and up to Paris.

The house was really great and quirky.  We stayed in and used the kitchen a couple of times, but we also tried all the restaurants in the village and also at Homps.

We  drove 2400km in the two weeks we were at Olonzac and covered all the tourist spots such as Montpellier, Carmague, Aiges Mortes, Carcassone. We spent a great day travelling to the Cathar castles Peyrepertuse and Queribus. We also spent an interesting day travelling to Roquefort to see where the famous blue cheese is made. We decided to go there on the back roads and saw some magnificent scenery.  

The wine co-op in Olonzac is really good and the people very friendly and helpful.  We drank a lot of Rose.

The market on the Tuesdays was excellent and gave us an excuse to stay in and relax on the terrace.

We had a great time and would recommend Castel Grand Rue as a great place to stay and visit a great part of France. Thank you very much for allowing us to stay there.”

Bryan H, Victoria - October 2016


“Our stay in Olonzac in Castel Grand Rue was absolutely fantastic.  We met our objectives of settling in and experience community life.  Both houses we ideally situated and stocked to enjoy and relax.

Our first week was spent travelling around the region with our friends (Minerve, Millau, Gorges du Tarn, Haulpool, Andorra, Sete, Arques Castle, Castle Lastours) and then after that we made use of the 1 euro School Bus and visited Carcassonne, Narbonnes and Beziers frequently for the day. We walked along the Canal de Midi, enjoyed the Tuesday market and then had one Saturday Boot Sale Market. Iain visited the Musee Archeologique in Olonzac.

Castel Grand Rue was a good home away from home for us and we would recommend to all our friends as a base for this region of France.  Thanks for the welcoming kit, a very good idea, especially when we arrived on the 1st day.  A very welcoming town.  Both Bakeries were very friendly.  A new Restuarant "Chez Leon" in Olonzac, recommend, along with others.”

Iain and Kay, Bendigo, Vic - April/May 2016

“Everything was superb again and I am sorry I forgot to write in the book this time. Take care till next time.”

Christine, Victoria - April 2016 (repeat guest)


"Just a quick email to say how much we enjoyed staying at your house in Olonzac, back in September! We stayed only four days, due to our efforts at trying to get around France in 3 weeks! We definitely would have liked to stay longer. The house was delightful – and quirky! We thought it had been supplied with everything we could need – including an ice brick to take on picnics. A fantastic location in the village of course!

When we were there it was vintage time and we did enjoy seeing the tractors and trucks going through the village, laden with grapes. The morning we left the wonderful market was in full swing. We regretted not being able to buy some of the delicious-looking paella that a man was cooking.

I think my favourite place we visited while in Olonzac was Minerve. Such a picturesque village. We visited Narbonne which we found very interesting and historic. We also drove down to Narbonne Plage and dipped our feet in the Mediterranean. Of course the weather was utterly perfect while we were there. A bit like northern Victoria in the summer – although maybe not as hot. We did love the clothesline on the terrace and enjoyed seeing our washing drying in the sun and breeze.

Thank you for letting us stay in your house. We would love to return there one day and discover more of the delights of the area – and taste that paella."

Elizabeth, Victoria - September 2015

"Would highly recommend our little home to for the past 10 days to anyone. It has been great, and thank you for your excellent communication. It made it all very easy. Only regret is our stay here is over."

Ann and John, Sydney, August 2015

"We had an incredible time in Olonzac.  It was a delightful town and a great base for us to explore the surrounding area and explore we certainly did. 

Some highlights were: Minerve; Galamus Gorge; Carcassonne; Homps; Olonzac – markets.  Talk about right at your doorstep!; Nimes;  Pont du Gard – we went there twice.

Those are some of the highlights that spring to immediate mind.  There were plenty of others.  We felt privileged to be able to explore a regional area of France in such depth.  Everyday was filled with another little adventure.

The house was great. We had an absolutely spectacular time and thanks for all the advice you gave this novice in the lead up to our great adventure.  

Don’t know when we can repeat it but I hope it’s not in the too distant future."

Kris, Melbourne, July/August 2015 (also reviewed on TripAdvisor)


"We have absolutely loved our stay here & feel very sad about leaving tomorrow (we're heading to Northern Italy tomorrow morning).

We've explored the region extensively, Mark is a very keen historian so I think we have visited most of the Cathar Castles.  Just as well really as it's worked off all this fabulous french bread.

Off to Montpellier today, the last on our list of visits.  We spent four nights in Avignon in the middle of the month, another beautiful region. Trained to Barcelona for a night as well, just because we could.

I'm actually a travel agent so will recommend your beautiful home to any clients that are looking to stay in the area if that's okay.

Thanks again for making this place such a wonderful home away from home.  The welcome pack was a blessing on arrival."

Gayle and Mark - Australia - September/October 2014


"I cannot begin to tell you how happy we both were with your dear little house! I have left you some comments in your Visitors' Book. We had a wonderful time, with many a laugh about finding our way in and out of the village each day. It was a great place to really unwind after the hectic pace of Paris - we just walked around Olonzac in our first 2 days, admiring the ambience and enjoying the friendliness of the inhabitants.

The market was great! We fed ourselves exceedingly well with fresh produce.

After such a wonderful place, Aix-en-Provence has been a disappointment, but the surrounding towns and cities are wonderful.

I would come back to stay in your house again, and would highly recommend it to anyone wanting to go for a peaceful and enjoyable holiday.

The canal du midi is just gorgeous - we found ourselves wandering back that way."

Alexandra -  Warragul, Australia - September 2014


"We thoroughly enjoyed our stay here in Olonzac which is a lovely quaint village. After being on the road for six weeks it was great to spend some quality time in such a relaxing spot.

The house is very well equipped and after a while the stairs didn’t appear to be so steep!

Overall, a very relaxing and enjoyable week."

Bruce and Barb, Toongabbie (Vic), August 2014


“First and most important, thank you very much for allowing us to stay at your lovely house in Olonzac. We enjoyed it  very much, so cosy and central to everything, especially 'Le Café de Poste' The market on Tuesday was also an experience.

The discovery at the Sports Café of Moule fritte was something special for me, I had not had them since Bruges a couple of years ago. We took a cruise up  (or is it down!!) the Canal which was marvellous, we went to Carcasone, and Narbone Plage, although when we got there the Markets were on and you would have thought two MCG full of people were there.

Had a picnic lunch  at the Lake, also visited the Caves at Limousis. Visited lots of villages, although next time we visit France, I must lease a Fiat Toppolino, or a Citroen 2CV….lol.

So, thank you very much again for making us so welcome at 'Castle Grand Rue' and if (when more likely) we are back in France we hope to be allowed to stay there again.”

Charlie and Jose - Australia - August 2014


"Thank you for your lovely email.
The cottage and Olonzac were both delightful and suited our requirements perfectly.  We spent a couple of lazy days in the village but ventured out to Carcassonne, Narbonne, Lastours, Lagrasse and went for a cruise down the Canal du Midi on other days.  We loved the market on Tuesday and bought up big time on all of the fresh local produce.
We will certainly recommend Olonzac to our friends if they are thinking about travelling to France.
Many thanks for all your work before, during and after our stay."
Louise and Don - Australia - July 2014

"The house was a fabulous base for our stay in Languedoc and had all the comforts of home. Sun terrace a great place to relax at the end of the day with a local vino of course!

Thanks for sharing your lovely gite with us."

Glenda & Rod, Susan & Ian, and Ann, Victoria (Aust.), July 2014


"We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Castel Grand Rue. Loved the house and the weather was good so we took full advantage of the sun roof. It was lovely up there in the afternoons. We found the area offered plenty of variety to explore. Having the canal so close a bonus. The house was immaculate. So glad we found olonzac it will remain a feature of our stay in France."

Lyn and Frank - Perth, Australia - April 2014



"I feel terrible that I haven't communicated you about our stay in Olonzac. But I think that's because we have been so busy with biking, sightseeing, eating, resting, etc that it has slipped our mind. The place has been a great base for our travels. A special thank you to your management staff who welcomed us with some coffee, tea, milk and MUCH appreciated pasta and sauce. The flowers were also a warm, welcoming touch. We're ending this section of our trip but I will always fondly remember our daily workouts up and down the stairs. Much thanks, Carla."
Carla - Canada - September 2013

"Castel Grand Rue is a delightful house in the lovely small French town of Olonzac. The house is beautifully decorated and spotlessly clean. It has 3 floors with bedrooms situated on the first and second floor .There is a lovely roof terrace and everything you need for a super holiday in this beautiful part of the world, only a short walk away from the vineyards and the Canal Midi.

“The Main Street has all the shops you need and there are some super cafes serving delicious food and inexpensive local wines. It is ideal for adults and teenagers, but I would not recommend it to those with small children as the rail on the sun terrace is quite low and there are no protectors on the windows to stop a small child falling out.That apart I would have no hesitation in recommending this holiday accommodation.”
Peter B - UK - August 2013

"We really enjoyed the week in Olonzac and your house was very comfortable, even the exercise regime with the stairs, the toilet half way up being a novel idea.   Sorry we didn't remember to write in the visitors' book but we had a good holiday, the markets on the Tuesday being a real highlight, as well as close proximity to the Canal du Midi where we enjoyed a canal ride.  The park in the middle of the town is lovely with the lagoon and swans.  My only concern is that we miss so much by not being able to speak the language well enough to converse with the locals!

"Thanks for your hospitality and we would have no hesitation in recommending Olonzac and your house as a very handy part of France to spend some time. "
Bruce and Trish - Queensland - July 2013

"We have thoroughly enjoyed our week's stay here at Castel Grand Rue. It has been a wonderful experience that we would love to repeat sometime in the future. Thanks to Carolyn and Jurgen and Cameron and Michelle for making this lovely house available. The Olonzac area really grows on you and there is so much to see - thank you again."

Jeff and Betty - Victoria, Australia - June 2013


"I stayed at Castel Grand Rue for a week with my brother and partner (we were in the area for a family wedding) and we were all absolutely delighted with the house. The owner, Carolyn, was very helpful (via email) from start to finish and the house was comfortable (all the mod cons) and had lots of character.

"There are narrow stairs curling up through the house and the rooms are all different shapes and sizes. The stairs may be a little challenging for elderly or disabled guests but my brother has difficulty walking and he managed fine as there are handrails. We especially loved the power shower, the terrace and the bed in the main bedroom upstairs - it was so comfy we found it hard to get up in the morning! There is also a washing machine and line outside (very useful), a coffee machine and free WIFI.

"The house is situated right in the centre of Olonzac so it's just round the corner from the main square where we enjoyed many beers and coffees on the street as well as some lovely food. I highly recommend this house for a family or group of friends. It is also great value for money. I would stay there again."

Vikki - Malaysia - August '12 (as reviewed on TripAdvisor)

"Your house is lovely, as is the area.

"We have really appreciated our time here, & with Helen being a historian, there is added resonance."

Richard and Helen - UK - July '12

"It's been a wonderful place to live; thank you. Although, as I'm sure you've heard, the weather was rather cold for several weeks. The house held up well, though. Wonderful to have heating that we could control in each room.

"We'll certainly recommend your abode to colleagues looking for paradise in Southern France."

Rena - Canada - Feb '12

"Yes, we had a lovely time. The house was great for older and younger adults, with plenty of space - except in the kitchen! As everyone else says, the market is a real highlight. As we normally live 2 miles off a B road and a long way from a restaurant etc it was lovely being able to nip out to the shops and cafés etc."
Sylvia - UK - August '11

"We have two children aged 14 and 9 years old. Good days out for them were obviously the Lac de Jourres but for things a little more adventurous, we loved kayaking at Roquebrun and the O2 Adventure Park at Carcassonne which consists of a lake with boats and an 'inflatable park' on the water. Also there was a tree climbing section which was not for the faint hearted with the full run taking 2-3 hours. It had a system similar to skiing with different coloured runs and zip wires over the lake.

For ourselves we did all the other local attractions like Minerve, Olonzac Tuesday market, Carcassone (night and day), hired bikes from Parazza along the Canal du Midi, swam in the river at Lagrasse and Beze, visited and purchased from the local vineyards. We even enjoyed a chilled night playing boules in the park and calling for a glass of rose wine on the way home. As for eating out, we enjoyed lots and did not have a bad meal at all. Our favourite for a good lunch was La Guinette by the canal side at Argens."
Rose and Kevin - UK - August '11

"Well it's quite a while since our exchange of emails and we have now had our holiday at Castel Grand Rue. I thought I would let you know that we all had a wonderful time and pretty good weather apart from one day of drizzle.

We loved Olonzac- it’s the real deal. Everybody was very friendly. Most mornings and evenings we were able to sit up on the balcony and enjoy watching the swifts swooping and diving . Excellent boulangerier in Boulevard de Minervois. Olonzac is such a good base – everyday was different. We visited all the usual places – Bages ( saw loads of flamingos), Peyriac de Mer, Minerve, Carcassonne, Reiux Minervois, Sete, the MARKET (fab), Canal du Midi, (loved En Bonne Compagnie in Homps) etc and of course the stairs at the house prepared us for the trek at Peyrepertuse!!!!"
Ingrid - Devon - June '11


We look forward to welcoming you to Castel Grand Rue and Languedoc - the region we love!

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