Car hire in Carcassonne
Hiring a car in Carcassonne
Looking as though it is a picture taken from a book of fairytales, Carcassonne is a delight for anyone with an interest in history. The Medieval fortified city rests on a hilltop in southern France, giving the impression that you are driving toward a Disney castle.
Carcassonne is a popular destination for tourists, with millions heading toward the fantasy-esque city each year. As it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is often top of the list for anyone who enjoys historic locations.
What you need to know
When it comes to hiring a car in Carcassonne you have a number of choices in terms of company and pick-up location. There are six car hire companies available in the city, but some of these only have one collection point.
You can make it easier to find the right hire car for your needs by using Holiday Autos' booking tool. This will show you which companies have cars available for the dates of your trip, as well as what vehicles you can choose from.
There are no hidden costs and we provide free cancellation, as well as 24/7 support for all customers.
Where to pick up your car
The best option when hiring a car in Carcassonne is to collect your car from the airport. All six companies offer collection from Carcassonne Airport (CCF), with car hire desks located in the terminal. This means you can simply pick up your car and get on with enjoying your holiday.
For those arriving at the city by rail, Avis offers pick up from the train station. Some car hire companies also have collection points elsewhere in Carcassonne, so you should check what your options are prior to travel.
“The pick-up was easy, it took 5 minutes from arriving at the desk to driving out the car, and the return took even less time.”
Where to go
Once you have your car, you can start exploring the beautiful historic fortified city of Carcassonne. It isn't hard to see why so many people venture here each year, as it really is something spectacular.
Beyond the city, wine country opens up before you, with great towns within a short drive, allowing you to really experience the south of France. From the flat roads of Aude to the mountainous Pyrenees Orientales, there is so much to explore that you'll be happy to have your hire car to hand.
You don't need to travel far from Carcassonne to find an interesting place. Just 30 minutes on the D620 will take you to Caunes-Minervois, a charming Medieval town filled with winding streets. Surrounded by vineyards, the sand-coloured town is a truly beautiful place, offering charming restaurants serving local wine and numerous photo opportunities.
Another lovely and ancient town to visit is Bram, which is just over 20km away via the D33. The town has a centre that is arranged in circles, which looks beautiful when viewed from above. It is also the crossroads for two historic roads, with the site being inhabited since the second century BC. Bram is full of historic sites that are worth a visit in order to truly understand the area's long past.
It is definitely a good idea to head even further afield into the south of France, with Carcassonne offering a good location from which to travel to other places.
The Mediterranean town of Perpignan is just over an hour away via the coastal route, following the A61 before turning onto the A9. The route has tolls but it means you can get to the sunny town much quicker. With a strong Spanish influence, Perpignan is wonderful to explore. It is home to the Palace of the Kings of Majorca, as well as great seafood restaurants.
To enjoy the seaside, drive the 60km down the A61 to the beautiful coastal town of Narbonne. Previously a Roman port, Narbonne is now a relaxed location that houses gorgeous stately buildings. Beyond the canals and gothic-style buildings, Narbonne offers stunning sandy beaches. Here you can soak up the sun or enjoy a swim after taking in the history of the town.
Top attractions in Carcassonne
Hiring a car allows you to explore the beauty of Carcassonne to its true extent, giving you the opportunity to see its top attractions. It will also open up the south of France to you, showing you what this amazing area of the country has on offer.
Eating and drinking
There is no chance of you going hungry in and around Carcassonne, as the area is well-known for its great food and drink. One of the specialities of the town is cassoulet, which offers a flavoursome and filling meat casserole unlike any you will have tried before. You'll also be able to try perfect duck confit, as well as classic goose, which you can wash down with stunning glasses of wine that will have been produced close by.
If you want to try cooking for yourself during your stay, head to the markets, which have a slightly historic feel due to the live poultry on offer. Here you can choose from local, fresh produce, including pink Lautrec garlic.
Things to do
If you're a fan of wine, you can head to a winemaker workshop to find out all about the art of producing a good glass. You'll learn how the grapes are grown and prepared and may even get the opportunity to try a tasty tipple or two.
Those who wish to find out about the fascinating history of Carcassonne should head to the Chateau Comtal Museum. Here you can learn all about the fortifications and how the city came to be.
Of course, you can also just take in all the beauty of Carcassonne on foot, as there is plenty to see and you don't need to go far to do so.
One of the most obvious sights of note in Carcassonne is Château Comtal. The restored Medieval castle is the largest of its kind in Europe and is extra incredible as its city walls are still intact. This imposing site is what gives Carcassonne its fairytale-like appearance and offers wonderful views of the city if you walk the ramparts.
You should also head to the Basilica of Saints Nazarius and Celsus to explore its beautiful gothic architecture. Known for its stunning stained glass windows, which come to life when the sun shines through, the church is a national monument that can't be missed.
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