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Review: Montferrier

City/Town/Region/Island

Ariege, France

A pleasant small village and a good base

  • By SilverTraveller ESW

    2468 reviews

    Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon

  • May 2013
  • Husband

110 people found this review helpful

We were wanting a base in the foothills of the Pyrenees and the area around Foix seemed to be a good choice. Brittany Ferries had two properties in the area. We quickly dismissed on which would have involved a 15 minute drive along a narrow and winding road at both ends of the day. We chose Hameau de Barthale in Montferrier. This proved to be a good choice. Barthale is a small hamlet, a continuation of the slightly larger Montferrier, signed south off the D117, Foix to Lavelanet road. The ski resort of Les Monts d’Olmes is a shot drive to the south. Château de Montsegur is an even shorter drive to the south east.

It is a workaday village set in a steep sided valley with mixed woodland. The narrow main street is lined with plaster or stone houses with wooden shutter. Walls are painted in a rather drab shade of beige which can give the village a rather dour appearance.

It had been a fortified town with a castle but all that is left are some stones at the top of rue du Château. The square, lined with tall houses, contains the war memorial.

The church has clocher peigne with a 3-2-1 arrangement of bell holes with a double row of bells in the lowest row. There is a tall plastered nave with a buttressed apse and lower sacristy on the south wall. There is a large stone porch over the west door. The church always seemed to be ocked and we never did manage to get in it.

There is a small restaurant at the start of the village which had very limited opening hours in May.

For the self caterer, there are two food shops. Proxi is the larger and the proprietor speaks English. The shop sells bread, some fruit and veg, groceries and a good selection of local cheese. Au Petit Bonheur d’Odile is smaller and stocks bread, some fruit and veg, a selection of French cheese, some groceries and household items. Both shops are open early and close about 7pm.

The nearby town of Lavelanet has a couple of big supermarkets for the bigger shops.

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This review is solely based on the opinion of a Silver Travel Advisor member and not of Silver Travel Advisor Ltd.

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