On our way from Saint Emilion-Montagne to Arles we stopped for lunch in Carcassonne.  My plan because it is about half-way to our evening destination, Arle, and it is the home of Cassoulet, and I planned on seeing if the local production is as good as Heidi’s.  We found a bistro in a largely quiet town with few options owing to the season.  The Cassoulet was good, but not as good as Heidi’s.

We noted that the architecture is distinctly more Mediterranean.  Carcassonne is only 50 miles from the ocean in the valley of the Aude River and the important trade Canal du Midi also runs through it.  As with every town we have visited, the old walled city sits on high ground.  It was an important Roman trading center and still has many buildings in the old city from the Middle Ages.  We did not have time to do any more than a short walk to refresh ourselves before continuing our drive.  We have settled into this rhythm on travel days to shorten any ride of more than 150 miles.