A holiday is so important – it’s something we look forward to from the moment we book and it’s over in the blink of an eye. For most of us, life is a fast paced juggling act, so a holiday is a time when we choose what we really want to do. We call the shots, even if they are just to say pass me another book to read or what t-shirt shall I wear today?
Of course, holidays mean different things to different people, especially when it comes to finding the right holiday rental for your needs. It’s always good to work out what kind of holiday rental guest you are, as it can make the process of finding the perfect place much easier.
Have a look at the following 4 categories to see which one best describes what you want from your holiday rental property:-
Chilled Out and Laid Back
Even if your favourite saying about your perfect holiday is “I want to do absolutely nothing”, you will rarely mean it. If you want to do very little, then your close surroundings will be so much more important to you.
- Choose a gite with plenty of indoor space, which is light, airy and comfortable, so you can have time to just relax.
- Outdoor space is also important, so you can lie on a sun lounger or float around in the pool. I would recommend buying an inflatable chair from a local supermarket for about 15 euros so you can bob around on top of the water.
- If the pool is important to you then make sure you have confirmed with the owners that you have sole use of the pool.
- Choose a tranquil location so you can enjoy the peace and quiet, but be close to places with some hustle and bustle that you can dip into when you want.
- Pick an area with great food to buy and prepare, so you can eat and cook when you want but still have good restaurants to visit when the mood suits you.
- Although I would never encourage the availability of the internet during a holiday, it can be a useful aid if you want to enrol on that online yoga class you’ve always wanted to do. Check out what technology is available in the rental such as free wifi, dvd player and TV.
Live Like a Local
Choose a traditional house to give that authentic feel of what it is like to live in the area. Don’t think you have to compromise on luxury and comfort just because you have chosen an older property. Shop around as you will find that you can have both, but book early to get the best choice.
Pick a location where you can mix with the local people and do what they do. There are many Marché Gourmands, Fetes and general get togethers in most French villages during the summer months, where you can eat, drink and dance the night away.
Enjoy shopping in the local markets where you can buy what’s in season and use the fresh ingredients to cook local recipes.
Seek out the little restaurants tucked away, where the locals eat – they are an absolute joy to experience.
Curious about Culture
If you are into music, then choose a holiday rental that has a good sound system, or space to play your own musical instruments, some may even leave instruments for you to play.
We leave a set of conguitas in our home and I would defy anyone to pass them without tapping out some kind of rhythm.
Choose a location with music, dance or theatrical events and find out if there are special events that you would enjoy, as this could be the deciding factor in choosing when you want to visit.
We have the Cahors Blues Festival near us which is a great event.
Visit vineyards and learn about the wine culture – no visit to France would be complete without taking time to learn more about winemaking and wine tasting. (link to wine tasting blog)
Search for Chateaux and other places of interest where you can learn about the history of a location.
Visit the Local Tourist Office to find out about local crafts people and designers of ceramics, jewellery and metalwork or carpentry.
Visit the many museums and seek out the museums which celebrate more unusual subjects. Our region of the Lot has several places where you can learn about truffles, fois gras and lavender.
Explore and Experience
If your motto is “I haven’t done everything, but it’s on my list”, then you definitely fall into the Explore and Experience category. Everyone has a different threshold where enjoyment of adrenalin filled activities is concerned, so choose an area where there is a varied mix of levels.
Choose an area where you can enjoy wonderful scenery, tranquility and perhaps a bit of history. In our region, we have many books about various local walks available from the Tourist Information office or many rentals will have created their own information packs. We have a lovely walk where you can leave our house using quiet, seldom used trails through forests, arriving at a local village just in time for lunch. You can then walk back home at your leisure without ever setting foot on a pavement or public highway.
If you enjoy cycling then search for cycle companies where you can rent bikes and they will advise you on the best routes which suite your ability. Again the local tourist information offices are a good place to start your research or the home owner should be more than happy to advise you.
Canoeing is a great experience as you don’t have to do it alone if you don’t want to. You can learn the basics very quickly and find rivers with calmer water so you can practise in a safe environment.
For those who want to take to the water in something bigger, then choose places where there are larger boats offering organised tours. Some have lovely restaurants on board where you can enjoy a wonderful meal as you travel serenely on the river.
There are some places which offer the hire of a vintage car to discover the area. You can just hire for a day or even half a day and feel like you have stepped back in time, as you explore the quiet roads and sleepy villages.
There is nothing better after a busy day, than to have dinner in a lovely restaurant. Foodie’s need their fix of good places to eat and although they enjoy cooking, there is no substitute for the excitement of visiting a really good restaurant for the first time.
So, if food floats your boat, then make sure that there are places locally that you can visit for those gastronomic experiences that all foodies crave.
Need Help Snapping Up Your Next Holiday Rental?
It would be very rare if you were 100% of one of the types I have suggested. In reality you will be a mixture and if you are going as a family, then there will be even more of a combination.
However, if you know what you think is important, then you have a much better chance of getting exactly what you want from your holiday rental and its location, so that your holiday is memorable for all the right reasons.
I would love to know which kind of holiday rental guest you are, so please let me know in the comments box below.
Also, what do you find most challenging when you are searching for a holiday rental?
Perhaps I can help, so please get in touch.