Exactly a year ago, we were in the middle of an 11-day road trip around the South of France. It was an absolutely massive undertaking to plan, inspired by cheap flights from Madrid to Toulouse and Lonely Planet's France's Best Trips book. I pieced together many of the different road trip itineraries in the book and added in some additional stops based on blogs and sites I'd read online. The final plan was very ambitious and had us covering quite a bit of southern France, but the end result was...fabulous (if I do say so myself). Now, when I think about going anywhere in Europe on vacation, a few places come to mind, and the South of France is without a doubt at the top of that list.
We spent the second night of our French road trip in the small town of Marcillac-Vallon. I didn't necessarily choose Marcillac-Vallon, it was just on our route and the town I wanted to stay in didn't have any Airbnbs in our price range, so, in a sense, it chose us. I was planning to get into town late and leave early the next morning, just continuing on with our itinerary, and leaving no time at all to see the little village. However, our hosts were the picture of hospitality - and they weren't the first or the last! We encountered this over and over in France! Such kind people inviting us to be a part of their homes and lives and providing fantastic food that we couldn't help put other plans on pause to experience real life with real people - and it was beautiful.