Friday, 24 July 2015

Please pass on our thanks to James for our wonderfully informative and interesting tour of Carcassonne on 5th July. He really brought the architecture, history and human emotion of medieval life during the Albigensian Crusade to life for us. So much so, that we went on to visit most of the major Cathar sites over the next two weeks. In fact, I'm just I'm just in the middle of reading the book on Montaillou which he recommended and it's an absolute revelation on what went on in those mountain villages at the time.
So, we had a wonderful day with James and really appreciated his erudition, laid-back style and obvious love of his subject. Please tell him that over the subsequent weeks we never encountered salad "mountains" like those we had that day...definitely a "Carcassonne one-off"!
All best wishes to you both and hope that your Cathar tours business continues to thrive.
We're recommending you to all our friends, of course!

H McCann, Wimbledon, London

Thursday, 26 March 2015

March Review

I just wanted to thank you and James so much for making my time in Cathar country so illuminating, interesting, and ... tasty! Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, I got to eat a delicious meal in a castle! So very special.

Monday, 24 November 2014

New Review

Testimonial (Carcassonne & Lastours)

James was so wonderful and passionate about what he does and his knowledge of the interesting history of it all is amazing....please thank him very much for me. Is he by chance going to that Belevedere view spot near Lastours with anyone else soon where I can join.

Monday, 17 November 2014

One day tour Montsegur and Puivert

Visit to the Castles of Montsegur and Puivert

A full day visiting two Châteaux about an hour's drive south-west of Carcassonne, both with strong Cathar connections.

Montsegur is the iconic Cathar Castle, the "head and the seat" of the Cathar Church. Its fall to a crusading army in 1244 following a 10-month siege signalled the end of significant Cathar resistance. It was besieged by the French army in 1243 and fell in 1244.  In addition to ascending to the castle and a visit to an informative local museum, the tour includes details about the death of over 200 Cathars who were burned alive after refusing to renounce their faith.

lunch is at a secluded restaurant in the village which specialises in traditional food with local produce.

After lunch we visit Puivert, a castle owned by a Cathar family who are known to have been patrons to many troubadours. This well-preserved castle has strong connections to both the Cathars and the Troubadours, sophisticate poet-musicians who sang the praises of such innovative themes as courtly love, chivalry and the fundamental equality of all people, regardless of gender or wealth.  It was besieged by the Crusaders during the Albigensian Crusade in 1210. The family fled and a new Catholic lord installed, who built a new castle next to the old one.  Our visit illuminates their enduring contributions to regional and European history in spite of the castle’s fall to a crusading army early in the Cathar Crusade.

Model of Montsegur II