Here are some examples of some of the local outings you may wish to experience.
A trip to Carcassonne in the Languedoc – the fairy tale hill topped medieval, walled castle and village. You will amble around the shops for souvenirs and marvel at the stunning ancient architecture. You will learn that the beauty of this place belies the sad history of its origins. Here the Cathars established a pure and simple religion only to be slaughtered by the Knights of the Templar – during the 13th century. You may have read ‘Labyrinth’ by Kate Mosse which helps bring Carcassonne’s turbulent history to life.
You will visit the medieval Canal de Midi – a piece of engineering brilliance built in the medieval period to connect the Mediterranean Sea with the Atlantic Ocean, for trade purposes. Today, barges and yachts glide gently along the tranquil waters, shaded by Cyprus and olive trees and surrounded by the beauty of the French countryside.
A trip to a stunning Château vineyard in the local wine growing region – Gaillac. There you will learn about the growing of grapes, the ‘vendage’ or ‘grape picking’harvest, and the wine. You will be able to sample their finest wines with an expert who will describe what you should look for when tasting wines.
Every week the local farmers come to sell their vegetables, herbs, plants, bread, meat and livestock at the regional Farmers Market. The place bustles with activity as the farmer’s wives examine produce and farmers, with berets, catch up on local gossip, playing cards and drinking pastis in the cafes. Artisans sell their wares such as olive wood carvings, weaved baskets and hand made garments.
Albi is a medieval town, frozen in time, resting sedately on the banks of the River Tarn. Next to Albi’s cathedral, the tallest brick building in the world, the Bishops Palace has been converted to a free museum dedicated a famous local artists – ‘Toulouse Lautrec’. Time can be spent at the museum, taking a boat down the river, exploring and relaxing at a ‘Salon de The’ in the town’s ‘Place’.
Castres has been the centre of leather production for France during the last thousand years – with the medieval tanneries still in existence along the edges of the town’s river. Castres is a secret gem, off the tourist track, and represents all that is truly friendly and genuine in the life style that encapsulates Southern France.
No holiday would be complete without a visit to our local village ‘bastide’ – Lautrec. The village is certified as one of France’s ‘prettiest villages’ and is world famous for its production of pink garlic [’oeil rose’]. A short walk takes you to the top of the hill in the centre of the village, providing striking 360 degree views.
Depending on the week of your holiday, there will be local cultural fetes and events taking place, such as the Bread Festival, Garlic Festival, Music Festival or local ‘Brocantes’ or ‘bric a brac / antique markets’.
More ideas for your stay are available in a short pdf guide that we have produced: Chateau Brametourte Leisure
The area has a range of restaurants available. Here is a selection:-
Les Terraces bar [5 minutes drive] and restaurant in Lautrec provides pizzas and basic French meals, such as entrecote and frites, at an affordable price of around €10 without the need to reserve a table.
The Cuq Bar Restaurant [5 minutes drive] provides a range of good quality, regional menus – including 3 course meal options between €14 and €25. There is no need to reserve a table and English is spoken.
Les Secrets Gourmands Restaurant [15 minutes drive] in Realmont provides fine dining menu options starting at €21.
Reservations on 0563790767.
Le Pescadou Restaurant [20 minutes drive] in Castres has an excellent range of fish dinners fresh from the coast for €18 plus. Reservations on 0563790767
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