Guest Notes for Episode 411: Watching a stage of the Tour de France in France

Categories: Active Vacations in France, France How To

We spent a week in Barcelona before taking the train to Carcassonne.  No problems with that at all…although I hadn’t realized that Narbonne to Carcassonne would not be assigned seating, so it was a bit of a juggle to find places for our bags.


  • AIrBnb on Rue Trivalle, a GREAT location.
  • Rented bikes for three days (two gravel and one eBike) from Evadeo Cycles and rode along the Canal du Midi.  HIGH RECOMMENDATION
  • Poked around the Tour de France set up Sunday morning before cyclists arrived (we did not have access to the gated VIP area), and rode a bit on the route.
  • Did a run along the Aude River; beautiful riverside park
  • Ate at two restaurants in the Cité, Le Plô (good service and food), and Les Terrasses de la Cité (not great food or service; truly one of the few disappointing experiences); a few in the Carcassone Center, all of which were good food and service, but none that were a “you have to go here” level).
  • Several free concerts offered in Carcassone Center…it seems like they are offered throughout the summer, and not necessarily just because of the Tour.  It made for a very festive and lively city to visit.
  • La Ferme fromagerie.  I love a good fromagerie, but next time…I will tell them the fois gras is for half as many people.  Too much foie gras.
  • A great “locals” boulangerie:  Boulangerie Ancestrale, 234 Avenue Général Leclerc Maréchal de France
  • Never did figure out public transport (it didn’t show up on Google Map directions), but with the bikes and walking, it wasn’t an issue– RTAC
  • Picked up a rental car from the airport…my husband rode one of the bikes out there…doable, but he learned that busy French roundabouts are not fun on a bike…not quite the Champs Elysées, but harrowing enough.


  • Didn’t stay here, just came through to see the Tour (and my son and I got to go to the Chateau).
  • beautiful small town; even with Tour, you could look around.
  • Found a village’s night market on the way to next AirBnb and had dinner.


  • AirBnb…most often used in winter, it had more cobwebs and ants than i’d like to admit.  Still clean, but I doubt anyone did much of a once over before we checked in.
  • Very sleepy town with not much there, but SBdC was just 2 km away.
  • Excellent restaurant Comme Chex Pappa et Maman
  • Grottes of Gargas (French tour with English written translation).
  • Saint Bertrand de Commingles – the Cathedral and Fournil Resistance.
  • Lac d’Oô hike

Returned rental car to Carcassonne, got train (with upgrade to first class due to a strike!) back to Barcelona via Narbonne.

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Categories: Active Vacations in France, France How To