On this exclusively designed, nine-day sojourn, bask amid the unspoiled landscapes, traditional French villages and lofty Cathar fortresses of the rich historical provinces of Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées—recently redesignated the Occitania region. Immerse yourself in the local culture and delve into the complex history, tradition and legends of the region’s many past inhabitants, from the ancient Greeks and Romans to the Occitans and the Cathars.
Oct. 6 – Depart the U.S.
Oct. 7 – Arrive Toulouse, France/Albi (d) ◆ Check into the Hotel Mercure Albi Bastides.
Oct. 8 – Albi (b,l,r) ◆ Walking tour of medieval Albi with visits to the Cathédrale Sainte-Cécile and Collégialle Saint-Salvi. Cultural Enrichments: ◆ Tour of Palais de la Berbie’s acclaimed Musée Toulouse-Lautrec. ◆ Lunch in a local restaurant.
Oct. 9 – Albi/Gaillac/Noailles/Cordes-sur-Ciel (b) ◆ Full-day excursion to Gaillac and Cordes-sur-Ciel with a visit to the Abbaye Saint-Michel de Gaillac. Cultural Enrichments: ◆ Wine tasting and tour at a family-owned estate in the village of Noailles. ◆ Town & Country Life® Forum in Albi.
Oct. 10 – Albi/Castres/Castelnaudary/Château de Floure (b,l,d) ◆ Afternoon check-in to the Château deFloure. Cultural Enrichments: ◆ Visit to the Goya Museum in Castres. ◆ C’EST BON! CULINARY TRA DITIONS™ cooking demonstration and traditional cassoulet lunch in Castelnaudary.
Oct. 11 – Château de Floure/Carcassonne /Canal du Midi (b) ◆ Walking tour of Carcassonne with visits to the Basilica of Saints Nazarius and Celsus and the Château Comtal. ◆ Canal du Midi cruise in a flat-bottomed boat. Cultural Enrichment: ◆ Time at leisure to explore Carcassonne.
Oct. 12 – Château de Floure/Corbières Wine Region/Abbaye de Fontfroide (b,l) ◆ Guided tour of Narbonne. ◆ Visit to the 12th-century Cistercian Abbaye de Fontfroide. Cultural Enrichment: ◆ Corbières wine tasting and cellar tour.
Oct. 13 – Château de Floure/Caunes-Minervois/Minerve (b,r,d) ◆ Walking tour of the medieval hilltop villages of Caunes-Minervois and Minerve, with guided visits to the Abbaye de Caunes-Minervois and the Église of Saint-Etienne. Cultural Enrichment: ◆ Time at leisure in Minerve.
Oct. 14 – Floure/Toulouse (b) Post-Program Cathar Country Option* or ◆ Return to the U.S. * Available at additional cost.