Le Petit Charme (LPC) is situated in the medieval village of Argens in the Minervois wine-growing region of Languedoc-Roussillon, an-up-and-coming viticultural and tourism region situated between the historic cities of Narbonne and Carcassonne in southwestern France.
Argens-Minervois offers visitors the opportunity to unwind and turn back time. It’s quietly tucked away on the sleepy banks of Le Canal du Midi in the department of the Aude on 463 hectares (approximately 1,060 acres) between the towns of Olonzac and Lézignan-Corbières.
LPC is adjacent to flourishing vineyards spanning more than 200 hectares (500+ acres). A series of country roads and trails through the vines provide guests with scenic walking, hiking, running, and cycling routes.
Argens-Minervois is built on a small hill dominated by a 12th-century chateau. It was the local stronghold against the political and religious conflicts of those times, including that of the Albigensian Crusade against the Cathars, begun early in the 13th century. The Cathars survived in the Languedoc region, but were finally annihilated by the Inquisitions of 1260–1325.
l’Église de St. Roch
A village landmark when illuminated at night, this church was originally built in 1880 and recently restored in 2000. Inside there’s an ancient bell and a baptismal font; outside is a beautiful cross dating from 1649.
Le Canal du Midi
Le Canal du Midi, a World Heritage site that stretches 240 kilometers (150 miles) from Toulouse to Sète, meanders through Argens. There are two locks in the village: the Pech Laurier lock, a particularly beautifully site, and the Argens lock, which marks the beginning of the longest stretch (52 kilometers [32 miles]) without another lock until Béziers.
The Canal is only a 5-minute walk from LPC. A well-worn path runs along one side, providing guests with a beautiful and tranquil exercise route for walking, running, and biking.
Le Lac des Aiguilles
This manmade lake to the north of the village—about a 5-minute walk from Le Petit Charme—stands at the bottom of the garrigue (shrubland.) Fishing competitions are held here, and it’s also a tranquil place for walking along the GR77—a proper footpath for those who like to meander through the countryside. Near the lake are the ruins of an early 20th-century tile works. Along the way, visitors are likely to see a few signs of modern times, including the local convenience store, a bar, and a restaurant.
Guests are encouraged to bring their tennis racquets and reserve a court for a game canal side.
Argens-Minervois is one of the few canal villages that has a harbour where visitors can rent a cruiser. It’s a relaxing way to spend an afternoon, particularly if guests take along their picnic hamper from Le Petit Charme.
Cafes, Restaurants & Stores
Enjoy a café canal side. See the People & Places page for more village amenities.