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What to see and do in Languedoc

 

Sightseeing in LanguedocSightseeing

Information on the region's many tourist attractions.

ActivitiesActivities

See what activities are available, from ballooning to walking.

Eating and drinkingFood & Wine

Taste great cuisine & discover the Languedoc's wine.

Holidays and tours in the South of France Tours & Courses

Choose from many activity-based courses, tours and holidays.

Mediterranean BeachesBeaches

Reviews of sea, river and lake beaches. Beach restaurants & bars.

Travel and flight information for the LanguedocTravel Information

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What to see and do in Languedoc

 

Languedoc Wine History Wine Tours

Learn more about Languedoc's wines with a guided tour.

Languedoc Wine RegionsRegions

Read about the wine regions, & what makes them unique.

Languedoc Wine CertificationsLe Terroir

How technique, soil and weather shape a Languedoc wine.

Languedoc Wine HistoryThe History

From the Romans through to Phylloxera to today.

Languedoc Grape Varieties Grape Varieties

Discover the differences between appellations.

Buying Languedoc WineCertifications

The complex and confusing part of wine in the Languedoc.

wine tasting in languedocWine Tasting

Taste fine wines. The best wine domaines to visit.

wine courses exhibits Courses & Exhibits

Learn more about everything to do with Languedoc wine.

Buying Languedoc WineWine Shop

Languedoc's best wines - cherry-picked by expert Wendy Gedney - delivered with no excise duty.

Languedoc tourism information
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Languedoc tourism information

Sightseeing

The very best of what to see in Languedoc - from beautiful villages and historic castles to the Canal du Midi and Camargue.

Activities

Choose from a wide range of activities. Cycling and canoeing are favourites. Ski the Pyrénées, or find a local golf course.

Holidays & tours

There are plenty of activity holidays in the Languedoc. Photography, music, cookery and sailing are just a few.

Beaches

Information on every one of Languedoc sea beaches, river and lake beaches and beach restaurants and bars.

Eating & Wine

Languedoc cuisine is rich with seafood & good wine. Find out where to find the very best that the region has to offer.

Traveller Info

Everything you need to plan you trip, including flight information, car hire, regional weather & city guides.

The Languedoc CrossThe Languedoc-Roussillon region is sometimes referred to as the 'Real South of France' - thanks to its largely unspoilt countryside, traditional wine-making villages and slower, Mediterranean pace of life. The contrast with the 'bling' of the Côte d'Azur and the often prissy artifice of Provence is marked - Languedoc still feels very traditionally French, with villages that aren't emptied in winter, good food and wine that doesn't cost the earth, and countryside that is as beautiful as anything in the Luberon or Tuscany. Here, you'll find unspoilt landscapes of undulating vines punctuated by rocky outcrops and rocket pines, often with a stunning backdrop of snow-capped mountains.

 

Collioure, in Roussillon
Colliour on the Côte Vermeille - Languedoc's answer to Cassis

So beautiful an area with such an amazing history naturally offers a huge amount to see and do for tourists. The challenge we've set ourselves with this Languedoc tourism section of the site is to cherry-pick the very best that is on offer, to ensure your experience of this beautiful part of the world is as rewarding as possible. The main sections within this 'Languedoc Tourism Information' area of the site are listed above. You'll find everything from the very best sights, activities and beaches to more practical information on flights and car hire and general background information on the region's geography and weather.

 

 

 

Our hot tips on visiting the Languedoc

 

Villages in the south of France
Visit Languedoc's villages for a trip back in time

One of the problems with the internet is that it bombards you with too much tourism information - so planning a trip abroad can be a stressful experience. Will you end up at some ordinary touristy restaurant? Will the church you've planned to see be at all interesting? Will your family end up on an ugly, over-crowded beach? To help make planning your holiday quicker and more pleasurable, we've tried to filter out the mediocre, the ugly and the boring, and only present you with the very best that Languedoc-Roussillon and the south of France has to offer in terms of tourism.

 

The Languedoc-Roussillon region excels at the traditional, the natural and anything to do with wine. Most of the villages here are very much working villages, usually dominated by wine-making. Drive through any small town, village or hamlet, and you'll notice the imposing 1950's 'cave cooperative' on the edge of town, and probably get held up by some vigneron on his tractor. The larger villages still have their bakeries teeming with inexpensive and delicious breads, old fashioned butcher / delis, and cafe-restaurants that spill out onto leafy central squares. But let's not forget all that isn't associated with tourism at all, a school packed with beautifully-dressed children, the local post office, old ladies gossiping in the queue for the tabac and that group of men downing tall glasses of Pastis in the local bar. It's all here - right out of the pages of a book, and sometimes it feels as if time stood still at some point in the 1950's.

 

Head for the hills

 

Languedoc vineyards
Vines for as far as the eye can see - now producing far better wines

Languedoc is also very beautiful - possibly one of the most beautiful regions in the world. Like Tuscany and Provence, the Mediterranean landscapes here are expansive and wild, with gently rolling hills carpeted with vines and the local 'garrigue' - a perfumed scrub of broom, rosemary, lavender, euphorbia and other dry-weather plants - dotted with olive trees, Mediterranean oak, almond and cherry trees and, of course, the mighty 'Platins' or plane trees. As well as finding the odd giant plane tree in the countryside, you'll also find them lining countless country lanes and canals - their panoply of green (which turns orange and red in November) creating tunnels of green that run from village to village. Head north into the hills, and the vines and garrigue give way to massive forests of pines. From up here, you'll be treated to spectacular views across the valleys below to the snow-capped Pyrénées and the coast.

 

There are regional differences, of course. South of the Canal du Midi, the Corbières offers a rockier, wilder, more remote version of Languedoc to tourists - as well as some of the region's best wine. Just head for the village of Lagrasse to see it at its best. The foothills of the Pyrénées offer abbeys teetering on cliffs, walled towns and batterred medieval castles. The Gard, bordering Provence, is criss-crossed by crystal clear rivers and some of Languedoc's prettiest villages, thanks to their cut-stone facades (villages in other areas are made of river stones). Or head down to Europe's biggest river delta, The Camargue, with its red lakes, pink flamingoes, white horses and black bulls.

 

Two coasts

 

The 'etangs' of Languedoc
Oyster beds fan out on the Etang near Leucate

Of course most who come here head for the coast. Don't expect to find the romantic undulations of the Côte d'Azur or Amalfi Coast. Bar a short stretch between the Spanish border and Perpignan (La Côte Vermeille), most of Languedoc's coastline is flat and rather uninteresting, often scarred by cheap holiday developments build when the region was slated to become the French Costa del Sol back in the 60s. But all is not lost. There are plenty of pretty villages and good beaches to head for. Our beaches guide sorts the good from the bad and ugly (it's the most thorough review of Languedoc beaches in the world). In effect, Languedoc offers two coastlines - one that abuts the sea itself, and another further inland along the shores of the area's many inland salt water lagoons or 'Etangs'. It's along this inner coast that you'll find the best seafood towns and villages, such as Bouzigues, Mèze, Marseillan, Bages, Fitou and Gruissan.

 

A lot of history

 

L'Abbeye de Fontfroide, near Narbonne
L'Abbeye de Fontfroide - the region's most beautiful

The Languedoc-Roussillon is one of the most historically interesting regions in Europe. Our History Page in this tourism section of the site offers a good outline of the area's ups and downs over the years. Suffice to say that for visitors, thousands of years of war, religious fervor and conquest have endowed the area with some of France's most spectacular and interesting historical sights, from the massive Roman Pont du Gard and the crumbling remains of Cathar strongholds, to the elegant carved cloisters of medieval abbeys.

 

Wine, and lots of it

 

Our wine section gets bigger by the day - thanks to Languedoc booming 'wine tourism' industry. To say that wine dominates Languedoc is no overstatement. Once the world's largest wine-producing region, Languedoc has recently swapped quantity for quality, and is now Europe's 'wild south' - with wine makers from all over the world pitching up here to experiment with everything from rare grape varieties to burying cow horns full of manure under the vines - all with the aim of producing some of France's best and most interesting wines. As well as giving you a good background to the wine world here, our wine section introduces you to the best places to go wine tasting, lists wine tours and courses, and even domains in which you can stay and see wine production first-hand.

 

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