Help locating a destination

Having been deprived of a visit this year by the Chinese Lurgy we are thinking about next year to cheer us up. Its a mix of holiday and hopefully future location search…
So any recommendations so very gratefully accepted!
Looking for a gite in midst-Pyrenees say between Lourdes and Foix in a small but alive town with basic shops and a couple of bars in the central square close to mountains.

Hi Steve,

When you say close to mountains, how close do you want to be?

It’s worth knowing that between Lourdes and Foix there is a big difference in terms of your proximity to the mountains. You mainly get villages closer to the mountains and some smallish towns.

Bigger towns are more inland as it were and vary greatly from each other.
For example I live close to the mountains, (15 minute walk) but there are no shops, one post office and a restaurant for the whole valley of 13 villages.
I wouldn’t however want to live in Lourdes or Tarbes. I lived in different areas of Lourdes for 6 years and I will never return.
I would also never want to live in Tarbes. In fact I avoid it like the plague.
Bagnères-de-Bigorre is a lovely place if you want something fairly active and close to the mountains but it’s the wrong side of Lourdes for you.
This is all subjective of course as people perceive different areas in different ways.
If you plan to come down as far as me, I can play local guide with pleasure. If nothing else you will know what you don’t want as well as what you would like.




And if one poster is to be believed, there’s a lot of dog poo and people who don’t stop at zebra crossings…not forgetting the noisy scooters :woman_facepalming:t2::stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

1 Like

Only spent a day there, waiting for a flight, but it struck me as the dullest place I’d been to in France.


Hi and thanks! Agree about Lourdes and Tarbes! We’ve been all along Pyrenees from Carcassonne to Basque country and still to find our place however love Cathar country and sort of the middle as it were.
I think to satisfy both of us means as far into mountains as we can but still as described :laughing:
Closest so far would be Argeles-Gazost and Arrens-Marsous but we’d like a bit further East…

1 Like

Also thanks for you very kind offer!

1 Like

Well you can further after Tarbes, Trie sur Baise area and beyond towards Maubourguet etc but then you are moving away from the mountains.
Argèles-Gazost can be quite expensive property wise but the villages around it less so.

Oh now there’s a “spoilt for choice” area! Ax-les-thermes but you’re well into the mountains, Luchon although it’s expensive but has pretty much everything and is central, Bagnère de Bigorre never really did it for me (sorry Dee!) but it has everything and is well located too. So much depends if you want to be in the mountains or on the plain looking at them :wink:

1 Like

Best Saturday market I’ve ever found in the area but different strokes for different folks @an_droo. We can’t all like the same things :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye::pray:

1 Like

Been to Ax a few times certainly nice especially for tired feet! Bit too “skiing” and busy for us though… Might have been to Luchon but not sure will look at that online too.
I suppose what we want is a short drive 15-30 minutes to mountains.

A bit big for us and we want to be south of the A64 really, thanks though. certainly Argèles-Gazost is nice but also on the big side…

If you think Argelès is on the big side, you’ll be needing a village so compromise will be the key :joy:

Perhaps my terminology was wrong! But small, few basic shops, couple of bars, central square sort of thing! What we really need is to do what we met someone doing a few years ago - touring for six months with a big camper and a motorcycle in the largest cupboard of it!

Either that or rent to start with until you find somewhere you want to stay. That’s what I did.


What’s the problem with Tarbes ?

I’ve been quite a few times and found it ok without being spectacular.

I have been to worse places ie. Mont de Marsan, La Roche sur Yon and Barnsley to name but a few.

Visiting and living are two very different things. It is not the kind of place I would want to live, and as I previously stated, that is just my personal opinion @Peter_Bird.

we are just outside mirepoix - purely incidentally with a gite. On the St. James Way (GR7) which is one of the octopus tentacles leading to Santiago de Compostela. Good location for easy access to rail and airports; mountains (walking and skiing) and Med. without being too isolated if you are looking for property. Just google.

1 Like

Yes, Mirepoix is very nice, a great market.

1 Like

Quite agree.
I’m looking to move to somewhere closer to the Pyrenees so that’s why I’m interested. I used to spend a lot of time in the area but only as a visitor. That’s why I would be interested to hear the pros and cons of living there or thereabouts in the future.