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Carcassonne to Sarlat

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Aug 13th, 2012, 01:50 AM
  #1
bil
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Carcassonne to Sarlat

We will have a full day to drive from Carcassonne to Sarlat in October. We notice that there are many different routes on Google and Michelen but wondered which towns/places would be worth visiting. For example, should we go via Albi or Toulouse.....we really do not have much idea and so would appreciate any suggestions.

Thanks
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Aug 13th, 2012, 07:56 AM
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I would certainly go by Albi, and all the wonderful towns in between: Castelnaudary, Graulhet, Revel...don't have my map in front of me, but wandering around in that area is wonderful. I wouldn't do Toulouse with such a short time frame.
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Aug 13th, 2012, 08:42 AM
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Yes I agree with St. Cirq here.With only a day I would choose Albi versus Toulouse. The only issue is that the area going up to Albi isn't that scenic (Castres, Mazamet etc.)

The other route worth considering in my opinion might be to go further East to Beziers and up through the Lot via Millau. The bridge is worth seeing. It is the tallest bridge in the world and the road up. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millau_Viaduct

So if you went to Millau and Saint-Cirq-Lapopie in the Lot, that is a very scenic drive. However, it is around 6 hours http://goo.gl/maps/MvQG4.

You can also skip Millau and go via Toulouse and Albi and that cuts it to around 5 hours.
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Aug 13th, 2012, 08:47 AM
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ira
 
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Hi bil,

We followed StC's advice and took the back roads through Castelnaudary and Graulhet.

Since we were heading East before going to Sarlat, we went through Albi.

For you, I suggest heading North to Figeac, driving through the Tarn valley to Cabrerets for the Font-de-Gaume and then going North to Sarlat. About 6 hr.

See http://www.hominides.com/html/lieux/...t-de-gaume.php

Enjoy your visit.

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Aug 13th, 2012, 08:48 AM
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<<(Castres, Mazamet etc.)>>

Castres is a very interesting town, maybe not classically scenic but set along a river with fascinating old silk worm workers' residences. Mazamet is a horror.
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Aug 13th, 2012, 08:50 AM
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<>

Hi, ira.

You mean Pech-Merle. FdG is in Les Eyzies, in the Dordogne (I know you know that, just saying for the OP).
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Aug 13th, 2012, 10:31 AM
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We also took the minor road from Carcassonne to Albi with first a stop in Castres.

After Albi we took a route to Cordes-S-Ciel. We had a lovely time in the town, all six of us. We were invited into a home by a Frnech Man who showed us inside his home, a beautiful terrace and the valley below.

This was an all day trip on our way to Rocamadour and I think the same could be done on the way to Sarlat.
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Aug 13th, 2012, 12:19 PM
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Bookmarking
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Aug 13th, 2012, 04:28 PM
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ira
 
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Hi StC,

><>

Hi, ira.

You mean Pech-Merle.<

OMG.

I need a new brain.

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Aug 14th, 2012, 02:45 PM
  #10
bil
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Thanks everyone for your fantastic suggestions! We will use them to plan this leg of the journey.

Thank you very much
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Aug 16th, 2012, 06:38 PM
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I'd follow any advice by St. Cirq here. We drove from Carcassone to La Roche Gigeac--some years ago, I think a fairly straightforward route -- oops, no, cirumvented through St. Cirq--turned into a long day. Anyway, it's all a very gorgeous area, how can you go wrong.
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Aug 16th, 2012, 07:40 PM
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Here are some pics of our drive between Albi and Carcassonne.

St Cirq, I am hoping you recognize where this is. We think it is one of the most scenic drives we have ever done.
The name of the road had something to do with (don't laugh) black walnuts trees or something similar.

I think the rescue was happening above Mazamet.


https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4vds2erwefrp4le/WWwisUTHfP
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Aug 17th, 2012, 08:43 AM
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Ttt
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Aug 17th, 2012, 09:46 AM
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sdp, not sure which pic you want me to identify (or which road), but I'll check my map a bit later and get back to you (have a busted left foot at the moment and it takes me awhile to crawl around the house). I see the cathedral in Albi for sure (the breadbox), but not absolutely sure about the other pics. The rescue effort does look like it's taking place on that winding, forested road outside Mazamet.

Will try to figure it out for you!
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Aug 17th, 2012, 10:05 AM
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I suspect you were on the Route de la Montagne Noir, south of Carcassonne, for at least part of the time.
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Aug 17th, 2012, 10:10 AM
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Thanks, St Cirq. From Albi, we apparently went through Mazamet, and along the way took the picture of the name of the town, and arrived in Carcassonne in the evening. My husband remembers the road being narrow and winding, with lots of switchbacks. We hardly saw a soul on that portion of the road.

Take care of your foot. This question is not that important, but the thread brought back some good memories.
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Aug 17th, 2012, 10:16 AM
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bil - Iris mentions Cordes, which DH and I visited many, many years ago on our first trip to France we and thought that it was both lovely and spectacular.

there is of course a possibility that other people have heard about it, but that applies nowadays to almost everywhere.
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Aug 17th, 2012, 10:22 AM
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Oh, I've been to Cordes several times and agree it's a lovely place. Had the best daube de boeuf there ever - the entire market square was redolent with the smell of it coming out the door from a small restaurant. Stayed in the Hostellerie du Vieux Cordes the last time we were there.
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Aug 18th, 2012, 02:57 PM
  #19
bil
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Thanks everyone for these fantastic suggestions! We really appreciate the trouble you have gone to and the exciting possibilities you have dcome up with!

Thank you
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