Rosie and Hugo who walked in the Pays Cathar in September

Hi Rosie and Hugo ! You have not long come back from your trip «  From Cathar Castles to Mediterranean Collioure »... Could you introduce yourselves ? 

My husband Hugo is crazy for castles.
We both love walking. I’ve wanted to go back to the Pyrenees since walking in the foothills with my aunt, many years ago. She talked to me in Latin for most of it and we had a wonderful time. 

Why did you chose this particular walking trip ? What gave you the idea ? 

Hugo has been interested in the Cathars for years. 
The mere mention of the siege of Montsegur brings tears to his eyes. I googled walking and Cathars and found Purely Pyrenees who offered exactly what we wanted. 

Montsegur

Could you just tell us a bit about the best bits and your favorite memories of this holiday ? 

The absolute highlight for me was the castle of Peyrepetuse.

It’s magnificent, impossibly positioned like a ship wrecked on a sheer cliff. The view, all the way to the Mediterranean, was absolutely awe inspiring.

Peyrepetuse

For Hugo it was the approach to Montsegur through the woods.

The forbidding drop from the castle heights makes it impossible to imagine how the crusaders actually took it. 

Our walk through the gorge was magical - the narrow winding passage through vertical cliffs and a jump into a rock pool. There was no-one there.

In fact in our first six days of walking we saw barely anyone at all. The terrain was varied and never more than we could manage.

We were supplied with an excellent walk book giving detailed descriptions of where to go and markers along the way. 

How was your first experience of travelling with Purely Pyrenees ? 

We managed to leave the entire kit that Purely Pyrenees had sent us on the plane when we landed in Toulouse... disaster ! But Purely Pyrenees were incredibly elegant and efficient about it and sent us replacements to our second hotel. That meant we did our first walk without the walk book and managed to get lost, but it was quite a hoot and we still managed to make our meet time ! 

The hotels were very varied but all very comfortable and clean. The one in Cucunan was our favourite. The most beautiful medieval village and a wonderfully understated hotel front that belied the comfort and prettiness within. An amazing restaurant in the beer cellar too ! 

We absolutely loved our holiday. It was beautifully organised and lacking in any sort of pretentiousness or fuss. We wanted low-key but comfortable with delicious food, and that’s what we got.

Food

If you could do another walking trip where would you go ? 

We are talking about going back to the Pyrenees.

I feel there’s so much more to explore. We both love Italy too, and so will probably walk there at some point.

But the main thing is that we’ve discovered a holiday format that we both really enjoy and want to do as much of as we can before we get too creaky !

Walking in the cathar country
 

See our walking holiday From Cathar Castles To Mediterranean Collioure
All our walking holidays in the Cathar Country and in the Pyrenees
How do we choose the traveller of the month ?