The Midi-Pyrénées and Languedoc-Roussillon: Places to Explore

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  • Albi

    Toulouse-Lautrec's native Albi is a busy, beautifully preserved provincial market town. In its heyday Albi was a major center for the Cathars, members of a dualistic and ascetic religious movement...

  • Béziers

    Béziers—centerpiece of the Canal du Midi and the Languedoc's capital du vin (crowds flock in for tastings during the October wine harvest festival)—owes its reputation to the genius of native son...

  • Carcassonne

    Poised atop a hill overlooking lush green countryside and the Aude River, Carcassonne’s fortified upper town, known as La Cité, looks lifted from the pages of a storybook—literally, perhaps,...

  • Céret

  • Collioure

    The fishing village where famed painters Henri Matisse, André Derain, and the Fauvists committed chromatic mayhem in the early 20th century, Collioure is still the jewel of the Vermilion Coast. A...

  • Cordes-sur-Ciel

    A must-stop for many travelers, the picture-book hilltop town of Cordes-sur-Ciel appears to hover in midair when mists steal up from the Cérou Valley below, hence the name—sur-ciel means "in the...

  • Montpellier

    Vibrant Montpellier (pronounced monh-pell-yay), capital of the Languedoc-Roussillon region, has been a center of commerce and learning since the Middle Ages, when it was a crossroads for pilgrims on...

  • Narbonne

    In Roman times, bustling, industrial Narbonne was the second-largest town in Gaul (after Lyon) and an important port, though today little remains of its Roman past, except an impressive...

  • Perpignan

    Salvador Dalí once called Perpignan's train station "the center of the world." That may not be true, but the city certainly is the capital hub of Roussillon. Perpignan tends to echo its...

  • Prades

  • Salses

    Salses has a history of sieges. History relates that Hannibal stormed through the town with his elephants on his way to the Alps in 218 BC, though no trace of his passage remains.

  • Toulouse

    The ebullient city of Toulouse is the capital of the Midi-Pyrénées and the fourth-largest city in France. Just 100 km (60 miles) from the border with Spain, Toulouse is in many ways closer in...

  • Vernet-les-Bains

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