Carcassonne - a Tale of Two Cities - Review by South France Holiday Villas

Visiting the Medieval City of Carcassonne

La Cité de Carcassonne” is a medieval city located in Carcassonne, a city in the Languedoc. Sitting on a hill on the right bank of the River Aude, it is one of the most visited locations in the region.

Getting there by car is very straightforward, all that is needed is to go onto the motorway and follow the signs towards Carcassonne, once you get into the city, follow signpost for “cité” and you’ll end up in one of the few car parks around the attraction.

You will be able to see the city as soon as you park. Follow the paths up to the main entrance, you can enter for free. Once you’re in, you’ll find the Office de Tourisme near the entrance, where you can pick up maps and other brochures and also get any information you may need.

Restaurants and Shops

The city itself is full of life and activities. There are many bars and restaurants, all serving delicious food. Some of them are in the most beautiful courtyards, surrounded by flowers and breath taking views. There is a main square where you will find lots of restaurants all next to each other; but if you would prefer something a little quieter, just take a walk through the many side streets and you will find somewhere to dine to away from the bustling crowds. The menus and prices vary massively; you can very easily find somewhere to have a cheap snack but you’re never far from a posh restaurant.


Shopping in Carcassonne is fun but can be quite pricey; there many little independent ‘artisanal’ shops selling the most beautiful things. If you’re looking to bring back a few souvenirs for your family then this is definitely the place to find them. There are also some clothes shops around, some of which are all home-made and most are beautiful, these clothes are a bit more expensive.

Carcassonne is famous for its sweet shops, there is one in particular which sells the most delicious sweets, and everything is so beautifully displayed, it could give Willy Wonka a run for his money!

The medieval city is bustling with things to do; there are multiple museums, churches, cathedrals, a haunted house, tours around the city in a horse and carriage, walking tours, an old school, an amphitheatre reserved for concerts and shows and so much architecture you won’t know where to look.


A day out for all the family

Carcassonne is an absolutely wonderful day out and will entertain the entire family. If you’re interested in going there, I would do it on a sunny day when you have a spare afternoon, as walking around the medieval city can take quite some time, especially if you’re interested in going in the museums etc.

Open all year round

It isn’t just for in the summer though, the city is open all year round and is especially fun at Christmas and Halloween. During Christmas time most of the shops and activities are closed, but you can still wander around the streets and enjoy all of the decorations, bars and restaurants. There is even a Santa Claus who rides around the city on a donkey, handing out chocolates to the kids.

During Halloween, the entire city feels eerie and scary, the bars are open and people are there to celebrate, but all you need to do is walk down a street away from a bar and you will feel like you’re the only person wandering the streets late at night. The haunted house is especially good at Halloween, everything is twice as scary.

Carcassonne has always been one of our favourite places to go, as it is fantastic for a day out with family or friends.

Where to Stay

There are many quiet and picturesque towns and villages surrounding the Carcassonne, all within a short drive. Take a look at the map of our holiday villas to rent in the Languedoc and see whether there’s something to suit your taste, budget, and group size.

Gina Evans-Forte
Gina Evans-Forte
Articles: 65