On the Canal du Midi
This list of interesting sites to see are within an hour's drive from the magnificent walled fortress of Carcassonne. There are towns and villages along the Canal du Midi that flows past Carcassonne to Narbonne (63 km), Cathar castles in the hills to the south, around Limoux (26 km) and sites to the north towards the Montagne Noire with Caunes-Minervois (22 km). Our photo (above) is the Carcassonne fortress viewed from the town.
Argens-Minervois [47 km] A very small, Medieval village perched beside the Canal du Midi; ruins of an old chateauand a very pretty church.
Carcassonne [0 km] This famous Medieval walled town is as great to see as its reputation. UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Carcassonne Town [0 km] This famous Medieval walled town is as great to see as its reputation. UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Castelnaudary [38 km] This ancient market town is the capital of cassoulet stew; a large basin and the locks of the Canal du Midi here give it a seaside feeling.
Caunes-Minervois [22 km] An ancient village with ab 8th-c abbey; Medieval old-town with narrow streets and ancient houses, fountains, lavoirs; several very good restaurants.
Couiza [42 km] A small town 40 km south of Carcassonne in the hills where Cathar castles abound.
Fontfroid Abbey [58 km] A great 12th-c Cistercian monastery in the eastern Pyrénées; with a magnificent church and a beautiful cloister.
Homps [33 km] A very small village, and very lovely area of the Canal du Midi.
Lagrasse [36 km] Medieval fortified village, picturesque with stone bridges and an ancient and active Abbey; good restaurants. A "Plus Beaux Villages de France".
Lastours [19 km] Tiny village and the site of 4 ruined 12th-c castles from the Visigoth and Cathar wars.
Lézignan-Corbières [38 km] An active market town between Carcassonne and Narbonne.
Limoux [26 km] A large town on the Aude, with ancient sites, lovely center with many events, wonderful Automats museum and piano museum; and a bubbly wine.
Narbonne [63 km] A very interesting and lovely town, full of ancient sites, Medieval palaces, Roman artifacts and a pretty canal; too much for only one day.
Quillan [53 km] A town on the Aude south of Limoux with shopping possibilities and a collection of cafés and restaurants.
La Redorte [27 km] The old village part has narrow streets and an old church with a tall bell-tower steeple; an active port on the Canal du Midi.
Rennes-le-Chateau [46 km] A small Medieval village perched overlooking Couiza and the Aude valley; an ancient church and a mystery-mystical history.
Saint Hilaire [17 km] Small village famous for the Abbaye de Saint-Hilaire in the town center.
Trèbes [8 km] A small town just east of Carcassonne, popular as a port facility on the Canal du Midi; cafés, restaurants, small shops.