Today our tour group took a bus transfer from Lourdes to Carcassonne to watch the race pass by this historic medieval walled town in southern France. We then continued on to our hotel in Provence, between Orange and Montelimar. Its a beautifully restored set of stone buildings set in the countryside and the staff have been incredibly friendly and accommodating. For anyone who might be visiting this region I would recommend this as a great spot to stay for a night or two.
The website for Les Mejeonnes is www.mejeonnes.com
The front entry to the hotel.
Alfresco dining for a beautiful summer evening.
A view from my bedroom this morning.
The visit to Carcassonne yesterday was one of those "Bucket List" days for me. I've always had a fascination with medieval villages and Carcassonne is probably one of the best known, so the chance for a quick visit before the race came by was an added bonus. Due to road closures we had to park the bus about 2 km from the village, so we hot footed it for a quick 1 hour visit before the riders came down the road. A brief selection of photos gives you a good feel for the place.
A quick snap of Carcassonne from the bus as we barreled down the highway. The walled city was built by a wealthy family, Trencavel's, in the 12th century and then annexed as royal property the next century.
A shot of the entry gates behind the carousel, taken from the wall of a large cemetery, which was outside the town walls.
The main entry.
The first line of defence, the external wall.
The bridge across the moat to the chateau. There is a temporary stage and grandstand in the moat after a recent musical festival.
A crossbow parapet on the wall of the chateau.
The rampart, which leads up from the city gates to the Chateau, and now houses all the retail shops and restaurants. Very similar to the rampart at Mont St Michele.