Not sure if it is the fact that even the street signs are in French here, but I find them very attractive. I like how they look on the corners of the buildings, how they sound when you pronounce them and how they are a part of the city.
I love French language. I am probably just a romantic, however, I easily imagine how people lived in those houses hundred years ago. When I see the castles, I see the cavaliers and the merchants trotting in and out; I feel the passion, the wisdom and the villainy of the people. What a world to live in! Do you also think of yourself as a cavalier on a horse galloping along the castle walls with your right hand resting on your spade before falling asleep at night?
Some of the castles were converted into housing complexes. Like the one you see above, Chateau Villerouge Termenes. Till 1980s people lived there, there were stairs and couple of apartments inside this castle.
It is true that French people love books. There are lots of bookstores in France, in each town, city and village you stumble upon bookstores. And people enter bookstores, buy books, read books in the cafes and on the streets. I love the humming of low voices in the bookstores. Makes it very homely. In spirit I am at least one third French, I entered almost all the bookstores I saw on my way and got books.