Vibrant past to discover
Visit Aude and Ariège between culture, heritage and nature
Discover the Cathar castles and their history
Staying at the Chalets du lac Belcaire is going on vacation in a region with a rich historical past. In the heart of the Cathar country, attack one of the heretical bastions and admire breathtaking panoramas. You will be seduced by these citadels perched above the void. Discover these little-known castles and learn more about the crusade against the Albigensians:
- Visit the remains of the castle of Usson as well as the heritage house, place of memory and discovery, with its archaeological remains and models.
- Discover the castle of Lordat, a unique site that offers many activities : shows, stargazing, raptor flight…
- Set on the top of a rock, the castle of Montségur rises to 1,207 meters above sea level. The castle walls and the keep are still standing. In addition to the visit, discover the history of Montségur thanks to the dedicated museum.
- Stroll through the narrow streets of Puilaurens, arguably the best-preserved royal fortress established in the region. The walls and towers marked by time are steeped in stories and legends.
- The castle of Arques consists of a quadrangular enclosure pierced by a Gothic gate and an elegant keep, flanked by four turrets, making it a masterpiece of medieval Gothic architecture.
- Peyrepertuse is at the top of a limestone cliff enjoying a magnificent panoramic view. The scale of its remains and the quality of its constructions make the castle the most important and remarkable example of military architecture of the Middle Ages of Languedoc.
Natural curiosities: the essentials to visit during your stay
Discover the treasures of natural architecture, geological singularities and their legends, known or unknown, which will be all atypical and unique outings. Among the natural curiosities not to be missed:
- Solve the riddle of the fountain of Fontestorbes. The water that comes out of the cave flows intermittently. The river cascades for 36 minutes and 36 seconds and then stops for 32 minutes and 30 seconds.
- Classified and protected, visit the Aguzou cave with a guide. Tours are in small groups for a day or half day. Play caving and explore the underground world to discover its wonders.
- Recognized as one of the largest in Europe, the cave of Lombrives fascinates visitors with the immensity of its galleries, the impressive size of the stalactites and the intoxicating color of its lake.
- A walk allows you to admire the Roches Tremblantes. These bulky stones would have the power to tremble when pushed, at least according to legend. 500 meters away is the Devil’s Chair, a rock carved into the shape of an armchair. It is said to be a very old place of worship.
- The Niaux cave is one of the last in France to allow access to more than 80 prehistoric paintings.
- The immensity of its cavities, the modern lighting and the prehistoric remains it contains are all wonders to discover in the Mas d’Azil cave ! Upon arrival, the interpretation centre allows you to discover the life of the first men. Then, leave for 1 hour of guided tour that will make you relive the excavations of archaeologists.
Curiosities to explore.