Walking the Cathar trail in the Pyrénées to Montsegur
|Cathar Trail: Carcassonne - Quillan - Montsegur - Foix
(H79 standard or plus packages).
Selfguided hiking holidays in the Pyrénées in South of France.
Walking holiday in Cathar Country
|Planning a trip
Cathar Castles of the Pyrenees : From Carcassonne or Quillan to Montségur.
From the Mediterranean to the Pyrenees Ariégeoises in the heart of
the sun blessed Corbières region, or between Montségur is where you
can find the secret trails and Cathar castles. Imposing stone castles
built high up in rocky crags of pogs. These fortresses are the symbol
of a tragic, political intrigue and drama that shook the South of France.
This walking holiday combines a historical interest that stirs the imagination
as well as some memorable walking through lush unspoilt mountains and
Interesting discounts for small groups (3 tot 8 personen).
The price includes: the moving on of baggage between hotels, the dossier containing your maps, route notes and all necessary details needed for your holiday.
The price does not : Drinks, entrance fees, additional transfers and holiday insurance.
Bus/train from Carcassonne to Quillan.
Transfers at the end:
|Planning a trip
|Walk H79 Cathar walk.
Standard** or **plus
|Carcassonne ** BnB or
Carcassonne *** BnB
|Quillan. After visit of Carcassonne,
train/bus at the end of the day to Quillan.
|Quillan ** BnB or
Quillan *** dinner+BnB
|Walk Quillan to Puivert
(overnight in Camurac, 1 transfer)
20,5 km. 5h45. Elevation gains: 200m.
|From Puivert to Belvis.
(overnight in Camurac, 2 transfers)
15,8 km. 4h15 Elevation gains: 400m.
|Walk from Belvis to Camurac.
(overnight in Camurac, 1 transfer)
20 km.5h15. Elevation gains: 270m.
|Walk from Camurac to Montségur.
14,5 km. 3h30. Elevation gains: -400m +200.
|Walk from Montségur to Roquefixade.
17,0 km. 4h15. Elevation gains: -160m.
|Walk from Roquefixade to Foix.
18 km. 4h50. Elevation gains: -300m.
|End of the package after breakfast
You will carry a small backpack only with a water bottle,
camera, picnic and wind jacket.
LODGING: In **hotels and chambres d’hotes in double or twin rooms
STARTING POINT: Carcassonne or Narbonne or the Med at Port la Nouvelle.
END: At the hotel in Quillan or Carcassonne. Transfers to airport or Carcassonne are not included, but we can arrange for that.
SELF-GUIDED: We propose a independent walking formula without a guide. You choose your departure date and we will take care of all the rest. We transport your bags between the hotels, provide the maps and good walking notes.
DATES: Departs day 1: every day all year round.
HOW TO GET THERE
- From Toulouse it is 105 km by motorway to Carcassonne. - By Train
WALKING STAGES DAY BY DAY
Day 1: From Quillan to Puivert
Start at your hotel in Quillan. (If you want a transfer to shorten
this first walk you can get one from Quillan to Nébias. Suppl. €5,-Please
let us know in advance). Nebias is a small Pyrenean village, the walking
trail known as the Sentier Cathare leads all the way to Puivert castle.
In its time this castle was far more festive than military a castle
of troubadours. The surrounding terrain is scrubby, there is a pleasant
vegetation of box tree, and juniper which gives a subtle fragrance to
the air, to be enjoyed in the shade of the oaks. From undulating valleys
and hillsides the castle comes suddenly into view, the imposing site
gets ever nearer. A ridge walk will lead you towards the castle doors,
it’s possible explore the towers, dungeons and the famous hall of the
musicians. This feudal castle was a hive of activity in the XII century,
a meeting and performance place for the most famous troubadours of the
era. The village of Puivert itself also represents an interest and vestige
to the past, the museum of Quercorb is a superb exhibition that really
evokes the life of the area at the end of the last century. There is
a model of Puivert castle showing how it would have been in the XIV
century. (Please note it is also possible for clients to be transferred
directly to Puivert from Quillan and from their chambre d’hote walk
in the village and visit the castle.) Night and evening meal in chambre
d’Hôtes at Camurac.
Day 2: From Puivert to Belvis
Today’s trail is for the most part in the forest, the Cathare footpath
traverses the forest of Lescale and Picaussel in the direction of the
Pays de Sault. A vast, airy wide open plateau situated high up between
950 et 1300m, the plateau is the gateway towards the high mountain summits.
Does, stags, roe deer are at home in these thick fir tree forests, if
you don’t have the chance to observe them you will surely see their
tracks and hear them nearby. The forest is also home to foxes, squirrels
and fouines, just thirty years ago lynx, wolves and bears would also
have been present.
Day 3: From Belvis to Comus
Today we have a section of the walk that offers a wonderful transition
of scenery. The walk will lead you into the county of Ariègeand the
‘Pays d’Olmes‘ by a footpath that was once used at the beginning of
the century by the local inhabitants whether for simple means of communication
and travelling or for commercial exchanges. It was the main route between
the ‘Pays de Sault’ and the ‘Pays d’Olmes’ regions. Night and evening
meal in Chambre d'Hôtes at Camurac
Day 4: From Camurac/Comus to Montségur
The lay of the land dictated the route and the natural route of access
between the villages of Comus and Montségur was by the gorge of the
Frau. For one kilometer the gorge is notched out of high chalk walls,
the path passes between cliffs soaring impressionably straight up, vertically,
towards the sky. The name itself Frau means fear or apprehension.
Day X: Walk Around Montségur
The site of Montségur, the very bastion of the Cathare resistance
certainly requires an additional day for exploring. The village itself
is quite unique, the houses and buildings are in long curved lines one
after another. They flank the mountainside in a well defined pattern
and are linked by small streets and pedestrian walkways. There is a
museum and some art and craft shops. From the museum a pathway leads
to the foot of the pog, a high rocky buttress, it takes about 30 min
to walk up to the summit where you arrive at a sumptuous belvedere.
The panoramic view extends for miles around over the Massif de Tabe,
with the Pic de Soularac and further East the mountain of the Frau.
Having visited the castle a circular walk in the direction of the ridge
of Taulat will allow you to discover high altitude mountain plains,
still used to graze the local cattle. Night and evening meal in Chambre
d'Hôtes in Montségur.
Day 5: From Montségur to Roquefixade
The ‘Sentier Cathare’ or Cathare footpath progresses through the
heart of the region known as the ‘Pays d’Olmes’, in past times a land
renown for the weaving of cloth, wool, fabrics and certainly specialised
in the production of combs made from cows corns.
Day 6: From Roquefixade to Foix
The last section of the sentier Cathare presents the double particularity
of visiting a medieval castle at the beginning and at the end of the
day. The route itself follows for most of the time a ridge walk between
the small village of Roquefixade and the county, country town of Foix.
The town of Foix was a counts town and its castle linked to Gaston Febus
is characteristic by its three towers and high, unusual rocky base.
Foix is the principal town of Ariègeand in during the Summer months
it is a centre of music and animation, a season of festivities and merriment
as well as the colourful Friday morning market. Night and evening meal
in a hotel at Foix.
Day 7 Last visit of Foix
This morning, the last possibility to visit the centre of the old
town and to wander through the old streets and to visit the castle .
2h00 effective walking.
You walk on walking trails with good footpaths and tracks. You need to be used to walking and taking regular exercise to enjoy this holiday. There is between 4h30 and 6h00 effective walking each day. The ascents and descents are constant. There will be between 350m and 750m ascension per day.
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Phone: +31 657 602 708
Walking holiday in Cathar Land
|Planning a trip