Tourisme du pays cathare au pays catalan - País Cátaro© Gullen Perez

From Cathar country to Catalan country

From the ramparts of the medieval city of Carcassonne to the beautiful coastline around Collioure, this itinerary is filled with surprises. You’ll marvel at historic monuments from legendary eras, works by the greatest painters of the 20th century, and incredible feats by daring kitesurfers.
There is truly something for everyone, whatever piques your curiosity!

La cité médiévale de Carcassonne - The city of Carcassonne - La ciudad de Carcasona© David Nakache

The city of Carcassonne: 2600 years of heritage!

Although the first inhabitants of Carcassonne were Gauls, the city did not become well-known until the Roman period, and it was not until the Middle Ages that Carcassonne – the theatre of a major crusade against Catharism – took its place in history.
Stroll through the ages, marvel at the stunning architecture of the monuments, and indulge in a tasty break: pretty cafés and restaurants line the small streets, waiting to introduce you to local specialities.

Blanquette de Limoux : le vin mousseux de l'Abbaye de Saint-Hilaire© Discover Carcassonne Flickr

Effervescence at Saint Hilaire Abbey

In the 16th century, a strange phenomenon caused some agitation among the monks of Saint Hilaire Abbey: their white wine suddenly became effervescent!
You will have the pleasure of tasting one of the first ‘AOC’ products created in France – Blanquette de Limoux, famous for its bubbles and fresh spring notes tinged with green apple and honey…

Mondial du vent : kitesurf à Leucate - The Mondial du Vent - El Mundial del Viento© Tourisme Leucate

La Franqui and Leucate: the best kitesurf spots

In Leucate, a steady wind blows 300 days a year over its wide sandy beaches. Kitesurf fans, look no further! Leucate and its neighbour, La Franqui, are the best spots for practicing your kitesurfing and windsurfing techniques, or watching riders in action!

The best competitors in the world converge here annually to take part in the Mondial du Vent – the famous World Championship held here each spring.

Palais des rois de Majorque - Perpignan - Palace of the Kings of Mallorca - Palacio de los reyes de Mallorca© Jean Pierre Dalbera Flickr

Perpignan and the Palace of the Kings of Mallorca

During the Middle Ages, the kingdom of Mallorca embraced the Mediterranean.

King James II designated Perpignan as the capital and had a magnificent palace built there. Admire the splendour and refinement of the Palace of the Kings of Mallorca. Then, you will surely fall under the spell of the Mediterranean wonders of the 18th century!

Collioure : exposition de peintures

Collioure as seen by artists

How lovely it is to stroll leisurely through the fishing port of Collioure! Like Monet, Matisse, Picasso, Chagall and other great painters, let the picturesque colours and unique light inspire you.

The exhibitions and art galleries tucked away in this seaside town will give you a close-up look at works by some of the greatest painters of the 20th century. We particularly recommend Chemin du Fauvisme, an itinerary that takes you through the city to see nineteen reproductions of works by Matisse and Derain.