Sunday 3rd May
Today we did the touristy thing to do in Carcassonne – go and see the castle.
We had heard from Eric’s parents that Carcassonne had the castle to beat all castles. And I can tell you, it’s pretty good. Think Kingdom of Heaven meets Diagon Alley. Look how far away we had to be to see all of it!
What you can really see here is the outer fortress. Inside the fortress are very charming narrow cobbled streets, which are now full of restaurants, souvenir shops and other touristy things.
In the middle of the fortress is the actual castle.
The history of the castle is very interesting. It was built in stages over hundreds of years, beginning with the Romans and ending with a massive restoration by a famous French architect in the 20th century. Like quite a few castles we’ve seen, by the time it had finished being built by the aristocracy who last owned it, it had lost its usefulness as a strategic position, so despite it being awesome it basically became useless.
Some nice views from the castle walls:
After that it was time for lunch, and then we couldn’t resist a visit to one of the extortionately-priced pick n’ mix shop because of all the sweets in barrels!
Carcassonne itself is very pretty. It’s centre is full of lovely rustic houses, rough around the edges in that very charming French way.
That was mostly it for the day. Part of the evening was spent trying to get on the campsite’s terrible wifi. I miss good internet, to quote my dad: it’s a human right!
Monday 4th May
We had set aside today to relax a bit and prepare for our trip to Barcelona.
Because of our recent bike issues we had decided to take a little break by storing our bike in Carcassonne for a few days and taking the train to Barcelona.
Today we bought train tickets, sorted accommodation to Barcelona and found someone on Airbnb who was happy to store our bike for a few euros.
Next stop… Spain!