October 2007 France trip (Carcassonne)



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Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7
Day 9
Day 10


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In October 2007 we done wonderful trip to south of France (Carcassonne), we would like to share it with you...

Enjoy ! we certainly have.

@ The beginning

Planning the trip was easy - starting with AutoRoute 2007, France is fully covered by it,

Leaving home on the bike (some call it motorcycle or motorbike. I call it MY BIKE) for a long trip is always so exciting. I am going over and over in my head what to take with me and the route I am going to go.


Day 1

Getting up @ 6am, so very excited, filled petrol the night before and packed my stuff, so just an easy ride to Dover.

Driving via Paris. As legend and experience says ‘it is always busy there’ - don't know what would I do without 'Jane', my trusted satellite navigator.

To Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines

We don't know how to eat Cuscus;

Went for an evening meal. Happily, found Moroccan restaurant. They did not speak much English but offered to cook some vegetarian cuscus. When the dish was put on the table we were disappointed that it was a bowl of plain cuscus sitting on another bowl of what we thought was hot water. We almost ate all cuscus before discovering that the bowl of water was in fact a bowl of delicious vegetarian soup.

 Day 2

Motorway driving to Ibis Montauban - No pictures from there or the way on the motorway

Long Motorway driving

Day 3

Via Albi, Caster and Mazamet to Bouilhonnac where we stay the week

Entering Mid Pyrenees, very nice road, start of mountains, ruins, castles, churches and history, history and history… Stopped in small village Pradelles-Cabardès for lunch – our staple from now on: bread, cheese and fruit. Lovely houses, ruins of some castle and church.

Later on from the road we see, high up in the mountains first famous Cathar Castle Lastours. 

See Photos 

Day 4

To the market place in Mirepoix - some pictures but do we remember it?

We take the trip to Mirepoix that holds big local market on Mondays. It is big – fruit, veg, bread, heaps of cheese and garlic. Also other stuff like jewellery, clothes etc. Lovely houses surround the square. We don’t spent much time there as…let’s not talk about this.

The town looks really lovely with wood-beamed, painted houses with their upper storeys overhanging the walkways and open cafes below.

Looks like you can spend nice few hours there sipping drinks in cafes and watching world pass by but we didn’t….

Day 5

The weather is great; not hot but sunny, October the perfect month to visit these parts.


This is incredible and a bit too ambitious day. It is easy to forget that 50 km in mountains is not the same as 50 km on flat roads. We have big plans to ride through the mountains, gorges and see high up abbeys but we have to abandon the abbeys as time gets short and we would need another day to do it. But, what a landscape!  First, the gorge – high rocks on both sides of the road and a river floating drop below.

Then the fortified village of Villefranche-de-Conflent, Tal’s favourite.  Really nice to walk about, especially that October does not see so many tourist; some shops and cafes don’t even bother to open. Really well restored, the whole town is surrounded by fortifications with lovely streets. Apparently it belonged to both French and Spanish in its time and has changed very little since rebuild in 17th century. Above it there is Fort Liberia but did not have energy to climb up, instead sipped coffee and coke in the square.

We ride back through the mountains. Nobody on the road but us; up and up, feels there is no down, behind each bend of the road there is another one and still going up.

Day 6

Tried to be less ambitious and actually make time to go to the castle. But first lovely road to the medieval village of Lagrasse. The road is scenic, through the mountains, by the river but I guess after what we have seen the day before does not made such breath taking impression. This medieval village is on the bank of the river, you cross over beautiful, stoned bridge into cobbled, narrow streets. There is an Abbey on the other side. We walk about and I like it very much.

Then two Cathar castles – Termes and Viellerouge Termenes. We skipped the first one but the second one was a bit disappointing, compared to others. This is not so much a castel as a cathar for. Only slightly raises above the village and not easy to see at first. Very well preserved, 14th century. It’s raining a bit.

Day 7


Day 8

All day Carcassonne and the Midlevel Cite


Day 9

On the way back

Day 10

Back home




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This site was last updated 24-Oct-2007