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Domaine de Pradines

· Lanuéjols, Occitanie
45 acres hosted by Virginie B.
6 motorhome/tent pitches
If you like your campsites to come with a healthy dose of history, check out Domaine de Pradines

If you like your campsites to come with a healthy dose of history, check out Domaine de Pradines. According to official documents connected to the property, the site was once owned by a certain M. Cambacères, a key official in Napoléon’s government. Indeed, Napoléon is said to have stayed here during the period of his Egyptian campaign, for which Cambacères planted some trees following the outline of the imperial eagle as a welcoming gesture.

Not impressed? Well, architectural evidence shows that the site harks back at least to the Knights Templar. Still not enough? Okay – how about the discovery of a 4th-century Roman coin on the grounds? (Yes, it really happened.)

Today’s incarnation of the campsite is in the capable hands of Virginie (from France) and George (from Scotland), who have been in charge of the place, along with their respective families, since 2006.

Situated slap-bang in the middle of the Parc National des Cévennes and Parc Régional des Grands Causses, Pradines is as idiosyncratic as they come. It boasts Turkmen yurts, a series of vaulted buildings that date back to the 13th century, wooden chalets, and an almost unbelievably large tract of land (370 acres/150 hectares) that’s mostly left wild.Almost.Seventy-four acres (30 hectares) have been reserved for the main camping site, a vast and fairly unruly space that has a touch of the savannah about it, helped by the African-style BBQ-eating area and tall, blonde grass.

 Campers can choose to take one of the huge spaces around the periphery of the field, or lose themselves completely in the woods. Either way, it’s unlikely you’ll be disturbed by your neighbours unless they’re shouting through a megaphone; and unless you have powerful binoculars, you won’t be seeing many of them either.

 While the owners admit that the rugged feel of the site isn’t for everyone, it’ll certainly suit anyone with a sense of adventure or with a yen for nature. Besides, it’s not so rough really – the amenities include a shower block ensconced in a charming old vaulted stone barn, a kids’ playground, a pool, a restaurant, a reception with a well-stocked shop... you can even get wi-fi here if you need to.

 The real idea, though, is to get a bit closer to nature. To take a memorable hike or adrenalin- pumping raft trip through one of the nearby gorges – the Tarn, Jonte, and Dourbie are all within easy reach – outdoor playgrounds that offer a multitude of activities, from climbing and hiking to kayaking, rafting, and canyoning. You can even paraglide if you want to see the area from a bird’s-eye perspective. Or explore the forests, granite hills, and magnificent caves of the Cévennes; a decidedly different landscape, also in close proximity.There are places like the charming holiday town of Meyrueis to visit. Or try Millau, once the largest pottery-production site for export throughout the Roman Empire and home to the marvellous Millau Viaduct, the highest bridge in the world (designed by Sir Norman Foster).

Guided walks and maps are available from reception. Plus there’s canoeing, climbing, parascending, horse-riding, potholing, and caving nearby, and, of course, the campsite’s expansive terrain, which includes wild flowers (including 30 species of wild orchid among other rarities), birds, and butterflies. Maybe you’ll find something older than a coin from the 4th century bc. A dinosaur footprint maybe?

We have 50 spacious pitches set amongst a wide open meadow, edged by pine forests on either side, or in the forest, set within the Cevennes National Park.  The photograph shown gives you an idea of the character of the pitches we offer, but is not necessarily the pitch we will have.  We will send you a description of the different areas of the campsite and decide with you what the best pitch will be depending on your needs.                Domaine de Pradines is a stunning campsite, a truly tranquil escape from the busy lives of today, with nothing but the stars to light your way at night. The campsite has no roads next to it, making it a very quiet and child-friendly escape.              The campsite has so much to offer, including an outdoor swimming pool with paddling pool, tennis courts available to rent, ping pong and an outdoor play park for the children. It's a large, wild and natural playground for young and old!  This is an idyllic, tranquil and beautiful setting within the Cevennes National Park, with a wealth of activities to do in the area from canoeing to river bathing and exploring, hiking, horse riding to paragliding, plus some lovely food markets in various nearby villages and wonderful, dramatic scenery.  A feast for the eyes!               In July & August, a vaulted dining room in an ancient Templar building is the on-site restaurant, serving locally sourced food - a beautiful space to wine and dine.  There is also a small shop selling essentials and fresh bread on order. The campsite setting is beautiful, surrounded by woodland with wild orchids and rare bird species, plus stunning views of the incredible Cevennes National Park. It's an ideal base for any outdoors enthusiasts - with a few luxuries along the way!                The price quoted for camping includes one pitch for the specified number of people, car parking and access to hot shower and toilet block, pool etc. Head torches are a must, as shower blocks can be a little walk (300m) from some of the furthest pitches, but the peace and tranquility certainly makes up for these extra steps, as does the starry night sky up above. Please be aware that there will be a taxe de séjour to be paid in French campsites. This Holiday Accommodation Tourist Tax for your holiday must to be paid in the campsite with a minimum and maximum range set between from €0.20 to €1.50 person/night.
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3 Ratings · 30 reviews
Eamon ?.recommends
September 1, 2022
Grass Pitch
A billion stars
How can this be a 2 star campsite? I counted at least a billion from my hammock! Definitely one of the highlights of our road trip, Pradines was a joy to stay at and explore. We camped deep in the woods and the children ventured off on their bikes to the play areas and pool each day. The family that own and run this site have created a very special place, wild and welcoming at the same time. We will return.
Helen ?.
August 28, 2019
I'm hesitant to write this review as I don't want anyone else finding out about this campsite! Totally beautiful area. Isolated campsite with large pitches. Wish we had stayed for longer. Lots of local wild swimming spots. Wish we were still there.
Stephanie D.
August 28, 2019
We enjoyed everything about this campsite. The huge pitches and feeling of space are fantastic and give a feeling of wild camping but the facilities are great and useful when you want to use them. We enjoyed the restaurant, the takeaways, the communal barbecue area and the shop. George and Virginie were really helpful with suggestions and even booking activities for us. There is lots to do in the area and the scenery is stunning. We enjoyed canoeing, climbing, canyoning, the House of Vultures, the Grotte de Dargilan and swimming in many beautiful rivers. We stayed for two weeks but could easily have stayed two more and will definitely be coming back.
Maximilien ?.
July 22, 2019
This is the best campsite I have ever been to. It offers everything you could want, ping pong, tennis, restaurant, takeaway meals, pool... The pitches are absoltely massive and I really do mean massive, we could not see our neighbors. The owners are extremely helpful and accommodating. For those who do not like camping, they also have number of other accommodations inculding chalets, yurts, and mant other original builds. I highly recommend that you visit this place because it is truly fantastic, I will be back without a doubt !
Martin F.
August 23, 2018
This is a great campsite; it is quiet, peaceful, remote, rugged and beautiful, set in the upland Causse (plateau) of the Cevenne. 
John S.
August 20, 2018
Having been camping in Ireland Britain and France for thirty years our stay here for a week in August proved that the right campsite beats the best hotels hands down. The site is truly like wild camping with pitches in the savannah clearing, the woods or in small isolated fields. The natural grasses mean that butterflies and crickets fill the air while there are views of distant hills and the most amazing night skies where meteorites are guaranteed on clear nights. The sites’ wonderful hosts have a loan-library of information on local activities while summer weekly wine tasting and a lovely restaurant and shop which sells all basics- including local wines by the bottle - ensure guests need not leave the site. We swam in the pool at midday with no other bathers for company and spent hours just relaxing at camp enjoying the wildness, tranquility and silence. The site is off a quiet D Road and the nearest village has a boulangerie - a half hour drive takes in towns with bigger supermarkets.Good canoeing on the Tarn and Dourbie rivers are within a 40 min drive. The site is relatively isolated but therein lies its appeal- go now to experience it’s beauty.
Lanuéjols, Occitanie, FranceTo respect the Host's privacy, the precise address of this land will be provided after booking
Hosted by Virginie B.Joined in January 2016
From the host
Domaine de Pradines, is a unique place - that's what we are told by visitors! We feel priviledged to live here surrounded by unspoilt nature with wild spots for you to discover and for us to share with you. Silence, tranquility, dark skies, loads to space left wild, little traffic, insects, authenticity, no queues, good local products, time for yourself and to be together, feel cut-off from routine, time to come back to what really matters, take the time. We are situated in the beautiful and diverse Cevennes National Park, 35 mins from the pleasant town of Millau and access to the A75, 2hrs from Montpellier, Béziers or Nîmes. Some practical information: When making your booking we encourage you to look at our website and the description of the campsite. You can tell us what your preferences and needs are and we will do our best to select the right pitch. Most pitches can have electricity (4€/day) but bring a long electric lead. Also, dogs are accepted (vaccinated, held on a lead, mess picked up even in long grass) 2€/day. The local tourist tax of 0.25€/adult/day is to be paid when you arrive.
Nearby attractions

An embarrassment of riches awaits. There’s the Grotte de Dargilan caves (00 33 4 66 45 60 20) or the famous Roquefort cheese caves (00 33 5 65 58 56 00); the Mont Aigoual which rises to 1500m alt. and all its outdoor activiies in the Pôle 4-Saisons; the Templar villages across the Larzac plateau; the Micropolis Insectarium will appeal to creepy-crawly lovers of all ages (00 33 5 65 58 50 50). Fremyc (00 33 6 58 13 48 48), in Meyrueis, organises rafting, canoeing, walks, bike rides, speleology tours, via ferrata, and more. Airzone Parapente (00 33 6 60 84 76 23) can organise tandem rides over Millau and the Grands Causses. Randals Bison (00 33 4 67 82 73 74) offer cowboy-style riding on their bison farm. Great walks and wild river swimming are easy to find and there are a variety of activities such as canoeing down the Tarn river, hiking, horse riding and visiting Templar strongholds all locally accessible.

Food and drink

Pradine’s auberge serves food in July and August (check opening-closing dates) in an ancient building with an impressive stone vault. It has a pleasant grassed terrace and there is also a small shop on site which serves fresh bread daily, basics and local produce. The village of Lanuéjols has 2 restaurant-bars called Hôtel Bel Air (00 33 4 67 82 72 78) & La Bonne Adresse, which is informal and family-run. Meyrueis is a bustling village in the summer with a weekly market, shops and wide range of cafés, restaurants and bars such as Hôtel Family (00 33 4 66 45 60 02), Hôtel du Mont Aigoual (00 33 4 66 45 65 61), which has good food and a down-to-earth atmosphere, and Le Jardin des Glaces (00 33 4 66 45 43 75), which serves up local specialities. For local restaurants, try Ferme Auberge de la Tindelle (00 33 5 65 59 18 39) and Auberge de Cadenas in the neighbouring village of Veyreau. Farms in the region rear unique brebis sheep that produce rich milk used to make Roquefort in you've guessed it Roquefort not far from Millau. Try Au Marché Paysan – Magasin de Producteurs Fermiers in Millau (00 33 5 65 61 39 35) as well as Terres d'Aigoual in the Parc des Cévennes also a cooperative of small local producers.

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