Departure from Toulouse
From 01 April to 31 October
Based in Toulouse, this 5 day tour will introduce you to the most significant sites of the Languedoc region. From brick built Toulouse and Albi to the stones of the mighty fortress of Carcassonne, you will be amazed by the rich cultural heritage this particular region has to offer. Highlights of the tour include private guided walking tours in Toulouse, Albi and Carcassonne, a unique visit of “Pech Merle” cave that still bears 22,000 year old drawings, a private guided tour of the Toulouse Lautrec Museum in Albi, a wine tasting session in one of the oldest wine regions of France and the visit of breathtaking medieval hilltop villages of Cordes sur Ciel and Saint Cirq Lapopie.
Day 1 ARRIVAL TRANSFER IN TOULOUSE
Pick up in Toulouse (Airport / Train Station) and transfer to your centrally located hotel. Check in and night at your hotel.
Day 2 TOULOUSE GUIDED WALKING TOUR / CARCASSONNE VISIT
After breakfast follow your guide on a walking tour of Toulouse to discover the “Pink City” and all its major monuments. Your tour will certainly take you to the central square where the Capitol – the city’s town hall – is located. Visit of the interiors of this impressive building. Your tour will also take you to the largest Romanesque church of Europe, the Saint Sernin Basilica where one can admire some of the earliest examples of Romanesque sculptures. Finally, visit the Jacobins church forever linked with the story of the Cathars also known as Albigensians. Followed by Carcassonne. The medieval fortress of Carcassonne is undoubtedly one of the most outstanding sites for those who dream to find out what medieval times were really about. Declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1997, the ‘Cité’ has preserved most of its Gothic architectural treasures. Upon arrival, follow your guide on a private walking tour of the medieval cité. During the tour you will discover the Count's castle, the church of Saint Nazari, Saint Celsius to admire the most beautiful stained glass windows of southern France and finally the fortifications that surround the city. Return to Toulouse and night at your hotel.
Day 3 ALBI GUIDED WALKING TOUR / CORDES SUR CIEL / GAILLAC WINE TASTING
Breakfast at your hotel then depart for the city of Albi, a newly declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Built around the original cathedral and episcopal group of buildings the historical city centre covers 63 hectares. Among the buildings of the town is the Saint Cecilia cathedral, a masterpiece of Southern Gothic architecture, built between the 13th and 15th centuries characterised by a strong contrast between its austere, defensive exterior and its sumptuous interior decoration. Close to the cathedral, the Palais de la Berbie, formerly the Bishops' Palace of Albi and that now houses the Toulouse-Lautrec Museum (guided visit). Then off to the breathtaking village of Cordes sur Ciel, one of the most charming of the region in which still stand more than a hundred Gothic houses. After a walking tour with your guide in the village, enjoy free time for lunch and personal discovery. Finally, the tour ends in the Gaillac wine region. The traditional red wines of the region are considered able to be kept for 8–10 years. Here, you will enjoy a wine tasting session. Return to Toulouse and night at your hotel.
Day 4 PECH MERLE CAVE / SAINT CIRQ LAPOPIE VILLAGE / CAHORS VISIT
Breakfast at your hotel.
The Quercy region is on your program for today. We first head towards the fascinating cave of Pech Merle that still bears some authentic cave drawings, paintings and etchings, dating from the Gravettian culture (some 25,000 years B.C.). The walls of seven of the chambers at Pech Merle have fresh, lifelike images of woolly mammoth, spotted horses, single colour horses, bovines, reindeer, hand prints, and some humans. Footprints of children, preserved in what was once clay, have been found more than half a mile underground. After this visit we leave for the wonderful village of St Cirq Lapopie, known to be the most beautiful of all the beautiful villages of France. Its position, originally selected for defense, perched on a steep cliff 100 m. above the Lot River. After it was "discovered" by the Post-Impressionist Henri Martin, it became popular with other artists and the home of the writer André Breton. Finally, stop in Cahors to admire the only remaining medieval fortified bridge of Europe, the Valentré Bridge. Return to Toulouse and night at your hotel.
Day 5 DEPARTURE TRANSFER IN TOULOUSE
Breakfast at your hotel then transfer from your hotel to airport or train station.
- 4 night accommodation in 4* Hotel (Twin share occupancy) in centrally located Toulouse including Breakfast
- English speaking licenced Guide/driver
- Private guided walking tours of Toulouse, Carcassonne and Albi
- Visit Cordes sur Ciel and Saint Cirq Lapopie villages
- Entrance fee and visit of the Toulouse Lautrec Museum
- Wine tasting session in Gaillac
- Pech Merle cave visit
- Meals, drinks unless specified
- Entrance fees to monuments, museums, attractions other than mentioned in the program
- Gratuities for the driver/guide
- Price base 2 persons: $3144.71 per person
- Price base 4 persons: $2152.47 per person
- Price base 6 persons: $1819.63 per person