Gîtes d’Etape: Rustic French Budget Lodging

Posted in: France


photograph courtesy of lludovic

Renting a gîte (a private French country residence) doesn’t usually sync up with the budget-minded agenda. Luckily, there is a rustic getaway option for Cheapos, too.

Gîtes d’etape are the budget counterpart of the traditional French gîte. While you won’t have a house all to yourself, you should be able to choose between an exciting slate of outdoor activities. Many gîtes d’etape sponsor a range of outdoor adventure sports. Mountain biking, hiking, climbing, kayaking, surfing, and horseback riding are all typical offerings, though some gîtes d’etape also provide skydiving and sailing opportunities.

Most gîtes d’etape provide dorm facilities and a limited number of private rooms, making them similar to hostels in terms of accommodation. The good news is that rates also remain hostel-standard: typically €12 to €16 for a dorm bed and €30 to €45 for a double room. Dining options run the gamut from guest kitchens to in-house restaurants, half board to full board.

For more information on gîtes d’etape, directories, and practicalities, check out our Guide to Gîtes d’Etape on EuropeanHostels.com.

About the author

TJ developed a taste for travel while living (and ostensibly) studying in Rome. He soon began catching bargain-basement Ryanair flights to various European destinations, where he would immediately scope out the dodgiest bar upon arrival. (He also saw some art along the way.) After returning to SUNY Albany, he developed an independent study in travel writing, which was mostly an excuse to drive cross-country. The 7200 mile trip, made in 11 days with two friends in a very small red car, culminated in a collection of essays called MOVE!, which he describes as incredibly self-indulgent and quite un-publishable. After moving to Manhattan, he found his way to EuroCheapo and has spent most of his time writing reviews for the New York City listings.

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