If you’ve read Peter Mayle’s best-selling book A Year in Provence about the pleasures—and travails—of moving to the countryside of France and fixing up a villa, then you know that buying a home abroad is not quite the walk in the park that you might have initially envisioned.
Still, it’s not impossible, and these castles—all under $1 million—prove that real estate treasures abound if you think outside the confines of our country’s borders.
So without further ado, here are 10 castles and chateaus in the countryside of France, presented in ascending order of price, that you can purchase for less than the cost of many (much smaller) homes in cities like New York and San Francisco. We’ve already attempted to entice you out to the suburbs with Victorians and other historic homes, so why not dream even bigger and take your home-buying fantasies across the Atlantic?
Price: $442,000 (€399,000)
The first of two castles in Lavaur, a commune in the Tarn department and about 20 minutes northwest of Tolouse in southern France, this 20-room, 9,700-square-foot 19th century estate sits on two and a half acres of lush land.
2. Gentilhommière Saintongeaise in Saintes
Price: $499,000 (€450,500)
This charming castle located in the historic town of Saintes in southwestern France features two towers, seven bedrooms, and more than 4,800 square feet of living space.
3. Castle in Pays de Cocagne, Saint-Sulpice-la-Pointe
Price: $531,000 (€480,000)
Also located near Lavaur, this handsome residence overlooks the river and retains many original details, that, if lovingly restored, would bring this 11-bedroom castle come to life.
4. Castle between Castres and Lavaur
Price: $548,000 (€495,000)
This incredible 19th century castle located between Castres and Lavaur is undergoing a complete restoration and includes two large outbuildings on the property. It sits on over seven acres of waterfront land.
5. Chateau in Gaillac
Price: $869,000 (€785,000)
Bright, airy, and recently renovated, this lovely five-bedroom chateau is the ideal vision of a French countryside getaway. Located in a small village near Gaillac in the Tarn department, the home even features a walled garden and swimming pool.
6. Castle in Saint-Brieuc near Val André
Price: $881,000 (€795,000
This impressive 18th century castle in Saint-Brieuc near the Val André resort in Brittany in northwestern France with seaside views features nine bedrooms over 3,400 square feet of living space, a winding granite staircase, a caretaker’s house, outbuildings, and many other original details.
7. Castle in Carmaux
Price: $897,000 (€810,000)
Located in Carmaux by the Tarn river, this 17th century, six-bedroom stone castle features a tower, high beamed ceilings, many original details, and over 5,000 square feet of living space.
8. Chateau in Angerville
Price: $985,000 (€890,000)
Only an hour away from Paris, this gorgeous 18th century chateau sits on over 23 acres of land and features beautifully manicured gardens, stunning original details, and antique Versailles-era parquetry.
9. Castle in Quimperlé
Price: $993,000 (€896,750)
This dazzling 19th century castle can be found in Quimperlé in South Brittany. It features nine bedrooms spread over three floors, and 6,500 square feet of living space, salons, a reception room, manicured gardens, a tennis court, and a swimming pool.
10. Chateau L’Isle-en-Dodon
Price: $993,000 (€897,000)
This elegant chateau in L'Isle-en-Dodon in southwestern France recently underwent a renovation and features 10 bedrooms and a total of 32 rooms spread across more than 12,300 square feet of living space. The manse itself sits on 17 acres of land that includes a large outbuilding, swimming pool, and small lake.