Da Vinci Experience
If you are a fan of the Da Vinci Code or the book ‘Holy Blood’, ‘Holy Grail’, you will love our private Da Vinci Experience, a Guided Tour of the Occitane and Cathar region of the South West France.
Cathar countryside has an enigmatic presence with hilltop settlements and medieval citadels, not forgetting of course the world famous walled City of Carcassonne.
About Carcassonne Town
In the shadow of its smaller but more famous sibling, the ‘La Cité’ citadel, Carcassonne’s (lower) town dates back to the Middle Ages. It features typically French bars, shops, cafés and restaurants, as well as all the standard services and amenities you’d expect, and as such it’s the perfect antidote to the tourist attraction that towers above it. Sample the town’s charms by simply strolling through its streets. Drink in the atmosphere and enjoy the authentically gallic experience; this part of Carcassonne is home to a handful of charming boutiques, several great places to eat and a couple of unusually stylish overnight options.
Set high up on a hill, Carcassonne’s ancient walled city is Disneyworld-perfect. This fairytale collection of drawbridges, towers and atmospheric cobbled streets was reputedly the inspiration for Walt Disney’s The Sleeping Beauty, and it’s a must-see on any trip through this part of southern France. Its medieval core, the cité, was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1997.
Although both the Romans and Visigoths were here, Carcassonne really flourished under the well-to-do Trencavel family of the late 12th century. In 1355 the lower town was burnt to the ground by the Black Prince, one of the key figures in the Hundred Years’ War of the Middle Ages, miffed at his failure to capture the citadel. Carcassonne’s key role in cross border trade with Spain, however, dried up with the signing of the Treaty of the Pyrenees in 1659, when Roussillon was restored to France.
As trade dwindled, the city walls, no longer needed for protection, fell into disrepair and it wasn’t until the architect Viollet-le-Duc began restoration in the 1800s that things started to improve. It was this project which helped save Carcassonne and ensure that the city of today is so outstandingly beautiful.
Our trail will take you to Fanjeaux and Mirepoix close to the Pyrenees which was an important Cathar centre too and Monsegur is probably the most well known of all Cathar Castles.
Rennes le Chateau, a castle in a small hilltop village, is the centre of many Conspiracy Theories involving The Merovingians, The Knights Templar, The Cathars, The Priory of the Sion, The Holy Grail, Mary Magdalene and the remains of Jesus Christ.
This full day tour will astound you!
£150 per person
- Full day with lunch.
Why not combine your Da Vinci Tour with a stay at our beautiful Gites, Maison de la Roche, close to Carcassonne.
Maison de La Roche is in the heart of Ferrals les Corbieres, a rural village, in the Aude within the Languedoc Rousillon. We offer an intimate yet child friendly nest of three charming holiday gites close to all amenities in the glorious South of France. They may be booked together or individually. Off season they can be rented by the night for those seeking a midweek break.
For more details please do get in touch with the inspire me travel team by contacting us here.
• The above experience can be customised to suit your requirements
• We offer Hotels from 3 stars to 5 stars as well as self catering where possible
• Number of nights are flexible
• Please contact us for your bespoke quote