Painting holiday

South West, Gascony, France

8 days from
per person

Average user rating

About the location

Lush meadows, rolling countryside, field upon fields of sunflowers and deep woodland expanses, all with the Pyrenees mountains standing tall in the distance, is what to expect on these unique glass, jewellery making, painting and cooking holidays in the South West of France.

Set in the heart of Gascony surrounded by 50 acres of private unspoilt meadows, the retreat is tucked away between the pilgrimage route to Saint Jacques de Compostelle and la Chevauchée d’Henri IV. Although the school is a rural retreat, the bustling picturesque towns of Nérac and Condom are within easy reach making it the perfect location for your holiday.

This retreat is run by Caroline and her husband, Adam. Caroline, is a qualified jewellery making teacher from the UK. She and her husband moved to the area looking for a change of lifestyle and now run their hugely successful jewellery making business from Baron-Figués, where you will be staying.

Caroline’s husband Adam is a serious gastro enthusiast, as much in love with the local seasonal produce as the Gascons, and entirely committed to cooking the most incredible traditional dishes for guests as well as providing wonderful cooking courses. A passionate teacher, he can show you how to make traditional dishes such as Brandade de Morue (salt cod and potato) or Garbure (vegetable soup).

For the painting course, the are joined by passionate local artists with huge knowledge and experience of the area as well as art to ensure you are taken to the right places to inspire your paintings.

Gascony is an undiscovered region of South West France, so there’s no chance you’ll have to wrestle with crowds when you go to sample the wonders that make this region just that bit more special. While there, you will quickly learn why Gascony is famed for its sumptuous local produce and seasonal recipes and you will realise that the locals take their food very seriously indeed. And if you’re partial to a cheeky little treat, Gascony is one of the main producers of foie gras.

It’s not just mouth-watering food you have to look forward to though. You can’t visit Gascony without trying out the fruits of the vine. Wherever you walk, you’ll be able to see the many vineyards sprawling over the hills and valleys and discover for yourself the wines are individual, full of character and exquisite.

During your course, you will stay in Baron-Figués which is part of a gorgeous 150-year old farmhouse with three beautifully appointed guest en-suite twin/double bedrooms, and one of the main attractions of this farmhouse is its large open plan traditional kitchen. Guests can sit around the homely table, that seats 14 guests, and share delicious meals prepared by Caroline’s husband. There are also no single supplements for solo travellers to have a private room!

Attached to the farmhouse is a recently renovated gite. The gite has been sympathetically restored to a very high standard and also contains two twin/double bedrooms. So if you are travelling as a group, this is ideally suited to your needs and offers the wonderful traditional French feel to it. If you are travelling solo, there’s nothing better than the farmhouse, where you will share the accommodation with Caroline and her husband and meet likeminded people who share your passion for the French way of life.

All extracurricular activities on your jewellery making holiday are free. So if you don’t feel like taking a trip after your jewellery making lessons you can try on site table tennis, basketball, shooting, archery and cycling, or you may just like to relax by the heated pool with a glass of that soul warming Armagnac. There are also a great selection of board games that will amuse as you while away the warm nights and share company with other guests.

This creative and culinary retreat combines the wonders of rural Gascony and modern home comforts of a traditional French farmhouse and unbeatable food and wine experiences that will live with you forever.

These holidays make great singles holidays for solo travellers, as well as friends or couples travelling together. The friendly group atmosphere makes everyone feel welcome.

- Tranquil and relaxing rural farmhouse set in the heart of Gascony
- Set in 50 acres of parkland
- An area of incredible natural beauty famous for its gastronomy and wines
- Heated outdoor swimming pool (12m x 6m)
- Free activities: shooting, archery, cycling, board games
- Local markets and a wide range of delightful restaurants from auberge (an intimate Inn) to Michelin star
- Superb luxury renovated farmhouse with 3 double bedrooms
- Luxury renovated gite with 2 twin/double bedrooms
- All twin/double bedrooms have private ensuite bathrooms
- No single supplements for solo travellers
- Open plan farmhouse kitchen and large living area with TV
- In house fully equipped jewellery making studio
- Table tennis, basketball, shooting, archery and cycling facilities on site (free of charge)
- Small group courses giving you maximum attention and tuition
- Close by there are a range of activities from horse riding, kayaking, karting, theme parks and casinos
- Also available locally are wine and Armagnac tasting
- Optional gourmet food course
- Throughout the year there are numerous fetes, music festivals and exhibitions
- Further afield you can visit some wonderful beaches along the Atlantic or Mediterranean coast
- Wi-Fi available
- Easy access from Agen train station (30 min), Bordeaux airport (1hr 40 min) or Toulouse airport (1hr 40 min)

Guest feedback
I want to thank you again for a wonderful time on my learning holiday! I could not have asked for a better environment and teacher! The course with your instruction was excellent, and I am still processing all the information and thinking of ways to put it to use once I get home. I was having so much fun that there were times in the beautifully designed airy and sunny studio that I could not remember if I had gone outside for a break or not! I enjoyed every minute of it and the time really did fly by!

Thank You! Thank You!

- Gloria, May, 2017