Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Location Location Location

Before we'd ever heard of Aspiran we spent a week in a small Hamlet near Olargues in the Haut Languedoc. The views across and along the valley of chêne vert forested hills were spectacular and the 1000m plus high Espinouse could be walked up from the back door. Pretty idyllic, but the modest remoteness had drawbacks. The boulangerie was a 20 minute round trip. It took 5 minutes to reach the main east-west valley road and the options were turn left or right. The supermarket was nearly half an hour away. Going north to nowhere, or south to Beziers, involved seriously scenic but narrow winding roads.

By complete contrast, Aspiran sits it rolling foothills nicely between Clermont l'Herault and Pézenas. Montpellier's tramway is just over half an hours drive away, as is central Béziers.

Five roads leave the village and seven neighbouring villages are reached directly without passing through others. An eighth, Belarga, counts when the Herault is low enough to walk over the weir. The A75 (Clermont Ferrand via Millau to Beziers autoroute) skirts the commune but is well away from the village and ensures the RN9 is a quiet local road. There are oak woods, a pine tree wood, garrigue and, of course, vines. Along with a baker are a few other commerces, tabac, post office, pharmacy and two bars. Supermarkets and brico sheds at Clermont are 10 minutes away.

Overall a pretty ideal compromise between open spaces, scenery, services and access to the department's facilities.

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