How about a long, sunny stay in an authentic Provençal villa, where you can sit on your own terrace at night, sipping free wine to the sound of the cigales?
If you’re driven by great experiences and not afraid of a little work, this could be your ticket to an unforgettable rent-free summer.
Workaway.info lists nearly 10,000 volunteer placements worldwide from caring for elephants in Sri Lanka to walking the huskies in Lapland. In return for four to five hours work a day, you get food and board, and an immediate in to local life! It’s a win-win situation. Perfect if you want to immerse yourself in a different culture and improve your language skills without parting with lots of cash.
How do I sign up?
You start by registering on workaway.info for a small fee, valid for 2 years: 23€ for a single person and 30€ for a couple or two friends. Then write up your profile, contact the hosts and boom! You can link your profile to your friend’s or partner’s and volunteer side by side with your buddy.
How long can I stay?
Placements last from a week to several months. All year round.
So, what can I do in the South of France?
The options are endless and extremely colourful.
If you’re good with your hands, you could assist with the upkeep of a chateau in Languedoc, help renovate an old Provençal farmhouse in the Luberon, or do a spot of gardening at a hotel just outside Cannes. Love kids? You could help with childcare in Antibes, teach English to a teenager in Marseille or help out at a holiday camp. Or if you’re looking for a real rustic adventure away from the world as you know it, you could experience life as a shepherd in the Vallée des Merveilles, sheep farming and selling cheese! Heidi eat your heart out.
Remember, whatever you do it’s only for 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week. The rest of the time you’re free to explore, make new friends and enjoy the local cuisine… for free.
[From L to R: Work in a café in a medieval village in the Var, or help around the house in Mougins]
Of course, you may come across some pretty unique opportunities too. One reads: “I live alone in an apartment in Aubagne in the suburb of Marseilles. I am 61 years old and a nudist (when I am warm enough) because I can no longer practice real naturism as I had a stroke a couple of years ago and I can no longer drive to go to a nude beach or a naturist summer resort as you always need a car to go there: they are not next door. So, I practice nudism at home, better than nothing, if the temperature allows me to and if there are no visitors. That’s why I prefer a nudist or a boy because boys are less likely to be offended by male nudity than girls. […] I need help cooking, cleaning and talk with human people and a good motivation to walk downtown.”
Anyone have a workaway story to share with us?
[From L to R: Do handy jobs at a chateau in Le Lavandou or become a shepherd!]
[From L to R: Paint and garden in Vence or help out at a hostel in Cassis]