Even before my youngest son went to live in France six years ago, I had always dreamed of going to Paris. But, as much as I love Paris, one of my very favorite places in all of France is the little fishing village, Collioure. With its location about 15 miles from the Spanish border, it features a mixture of both French and Catalan culture, with traditional Catalan dancing in the square and a bullring right outside the train station.
I love the slow, lazy pace and the amazing beauty. You can do as little or as much as you like, including climbing to the top of the hill above Collioure, or if you're like me, you can take a little "tourist train" up and save your walking for visits to the gelato stand!
My husband and I stayed in a little self-catering house which was originally two little fishermen's cottages. The week we spent there was heavenly! The Lemon Cottage has since been enlarged and renovated to accommodate up to five people. The lovely owner of this property is from Tasmania and is very helpful with local French knowledge. Collioure and the Lemon Cottage are definites on our list of places to re-visit in the next couple of years.
By the way, be sure to leave loads of room in your suitcase for espradrilles! There are a couple of shops that sell a whole colorful rainbow of these comfortable casual shoes at very affordable prices. My suitcase was bulging at the seams when we left.....