A Wander Atop the Carcassonne Fortress


I never usually wake up before 8am in the morning unless it’s for work or something cool like going to a fortified city. On the way there, we stopped at a petrol station which, I soon realised, was the same one where I bought a yogurt drink a year ago that left me throwing up into a bin on the Barcelona sidewalk.

Eager to put the terrible memory behind me, we pressed on and some three hours after leaving Aix, we were in the Languedoc-Roussillon region where la Cité de Carcassonne lay. I usually don’t like touristy places but after my elevating experience at Le Mont St Michel in the North West of France, medieval structures grew on me.

It was Romans that had fortified this city in the fifth century, during the Roman-Gallo period. The fortress was restored in 1853 by theorist and architect Eugène Viollet-le-Duc, but it wasn’t until 103 years later, in 1997, that it was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.

The Afternoon

Surprisingly, Diane and I enjoyed the relaxing atmosphere even though we were still buzzing from jumping out of a plane 5km in the air the day before.

The city had some incredibly interesting shops with regional specialties like biscuits and confit (I bought a gargantuan meringue for 2EU50!), while the church provided a beautiful backdrop for some low-light photos.

We spent an incredibly laid back afternoon wandering the cobble-stoned lane ways, shopping and avoiding paying entrance fees. As you can see, we really enjoyed our day.


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