Carcassone-Worth seeing??

Aug 15th, 2006, 09:24 AM
  #1  
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Carcassone-Worth seeing??

I'm taking a group of 45 to France in January. We have a day trip planned to Carcassone but after reading some of the posts here I'm wondering if I should bother. We will be bussing there from Andorra and it'll be a long ride if it's not all that I originally thought it would be. Suggestions? Comments?
skikat9 is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 09:30 AM
  #2  
 
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I bet your 45 folks will love Carcassonne as much as anything else. I think it's a fabulous place - a perfectly restored medieval citadel - Ersatz yes because it was pieced together from rubble in the 1800s but a totally romantic place any tour group will love IMO.
PalQ is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 12:10 PM
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I don't care how touristy it is...Carcassonne is incredible! Yes, 45 people will want to see it! It's small enough that you won't lose anyone - you can always plan an emergency meeting point at the only main gate into the city.

If you've seen the Kevin Costner movie "Robinhood" then you've gotten a good look at Carcassonne. It is a beautifully restored (OK, not totally historically accurate, but who cares?) medieval walled city. The castle tour is great (though it was only in French the two times I was there) and you can spend hours just strolling around the city, exploring the walls, and having a great meal at an outdoor cafe. Enjoy!
hausfrau is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 12:14 PM
  #4  
ira
 
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Hi Ski,

>I'm taking a group of 45 to France in January.<

You have my sincere sympathy.

Carcassone is well worth an overnight.

See pix 12-14 at
http://www.kodakgallery.com/I.jsp?c=...&x=0&y=-pla2au

ira is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 12:56 PM
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It's very impressive, even though it isn't all that old, having been rebuilt in, I think, the 18th century.
Underhill is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 01:01 PM
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We liked it. Not sure if I'd drive 45 people from Andorra to see it.

Then again, I don't know many things I would drive 45 people that distance to see. In January.

Good luck with that.
mr_go is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 10:05 PM
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skikat9,

I am also taking a group of skiers to Andorra in January!!!I was also thinking of a day trip to Carcassone!!!

I belong to the Nomad ski club out of Chicago. We are goint to Andorra Jan 18. We will be staying at the Art Hotel in Andorra la Vella.

I have also heard that Foix has a nice castle worth seeing.

What is the name of your group. When & where will you be staying?
cheribob is offline  
Aug 15th, 2006, 10:20 PM
  #8  
 
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Ira, your pictures are beautiful! Did you happen to do a trip report? If so, I'd love to read it if you would post the link, please?

Thanks!
Trophywife007 is online now  
Aug 16th, 2006, 12:21 AM
  #9  
 
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Ira, your pictures are stunning!
Toupary is offline  
Aug 16th, 2006, 04:19 AM
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Carcassonne is well worth a visit. You need to read up a little about the Cathars and their fortresses as there maybe some to visit on the way to Carcassonne. Take a look at the website which may give you some ideas:

http://xenophongroup.com/montjoie/albigen2.htm
hubrys2000 is offline  
Aug 16th, 2006, 05:24 AM
  #11  
 
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Restoration of Carcassonne began in 1853, after abandonment of the fortress in 1820. The main totally fake addition in the "new" version are all of the round pointed roofs -- if the restoration had been faithful, all of the towers would have been flat.
kerouac is online now  
Aug 16th, 2006, 10:22 AM
  #12  
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Ira: Thanks for your sympathy!! I may need it. When you're a volunteer, and you've got 45 people who can't always be satisfied, sympathy is a good thing to have. Or a bat to whack them all off the plane/bus! No, no, just kidding. I love my group. We always have a few major crybabies on board (you know the ones-why can't we use the bathroom on the bus, why does the trip leader have to sit in the front of the bus in the seat I wanted, why is my hotel room so small and why can't I get Cheerios for breakfast, why do I think Europe should be like home!?!?!)but for the most part they're a good group. They're skiers and they really are a hearty bunch with a good sense of humor (mostly).

Thanks everyone for your thoughts on Carcassone. I was afraid it was going to be another pseudo historical site (ala Williamsburg), and even tho in a way it is, I think in the end we'll be glad we saw it.
And Ira, loved your pics!! I'm jealous!
skikat9 is offline  
Aug 16th, 2006, 02:04 PM
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I'm a naysayer. You are going to drive over those slippery Andorran mountain passes and then all the way to Carcassone. Sorry, but I'd never do it. Last year we left the Spanish side of the Pyrenees where we'd been staying and drove through Andorra on our way to a cottage we were renting on the French side of the Pyrenees. We had visited Carcasonne in February several years ago and thought that perhaps the weather had something to do with why we weren't impressed. So, since it was now nicer summer weather, we took a day trip to Carcassone thinking perhaps we'd missed something. Still were totally unimpressed.
julies is offline  
Aug 16th, 2006, 03:30 PM
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I enjoyed my stay there and I'm sure your group will as well.
CRAZY4TRAVEL is offline  
Aug 17th, 2006, 03:44 AM
  #15  
ira
 
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Hi folks,

The trip report that goes with my pix is at http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...2&tid=34676645

ira is offline  
Aug 17th, 2006, 05:28 PM
  #16  
 
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Wonderful photos Ira. As always, thanks for letting us have a peek.
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