This agricultural department and labelled Cathar Country multiplies the attractions, the sea and the greenery, the Canal du Midi and the medieval fortified city of Carcassone, Narbonne and Castelnaudary, without forgetting the gastronomy of the Southwest. Go on the cassoulet route and the Aude wine route (Corbières, Minervois, Blanquette de Limoux...), seafood and local produce. Enjoy oysters and eels, beef from the Pyrenees, capon, pork and lamb from the Cathar country, fattened duck and beans from Castelnaudary, rice from the pond of Marseillette, sheep and goat cheeses, potatoes from the Sault region... And above all, take the time. For example, by discovering the Aude river from the Canal du Midi and the Robine. You will also enjoy the coastline, within the Narbonnaise Regional Natural Park in the Mediterranean, with the Corbières maritimes and its lagoons with pink flamingos and white stilts. Added to this is the picturesque Port-la-Nouvelle and Gruissan, the fishing ports.
In fact, each natural region of the Aude, and there are many of them, is marked by a particular landscape. In the lands, the scrubland and scrubland dominate the landscape of the dry areas of the Corbières. The Sault region is covered with beech and fir forests on the mountain floor. To the northwest, it is the Montagne Noire, land of the sheep. In the Lauragais, the cereal grove draws the hills. Finally and of course, in the heritage of the Aude, there are the castles and other Cathar sites, abbeys and villages of character.
When to go to Aude?
Aude is a tourist department with an important historical and cultural heritage and a wide variety of natural sites. Tourism is favoured by a large hotel park of all categories, available year-round. The variety of biotopes added to the richness of the built heritage allows for tourism in all four seasons and for all tastes. In summer, the seaside resort of Port-Leucate is full. Windy, it is appreciated by surfers. You can also swim at Narbonne Plage and Gruissan Plage, but also in the many lakes and rivers of the department. The coast also offers - but to avoid the summer when it is very hot to walk and where naturalistic observations are less interesting - the protected site of the Corbières maritimes and the lagoons crossed by nearly 200 km of paths divided into 30 loops, 10 heritage circuits, as well as 2 GR linking the villages. In the off-seasons the climate remains mild and there are fewer tourists
Throughout the year, the Aude schedules cultural or festive events. The carnival of Limoux, one of the longest in the world. It takes place every weekend from mid-January to the end of March, hosted by bands in costumes of Pierrot (the fecal ones) accompanied by musicians. In the Limoux region, the wine growers of Sieur d'Arques, organize Toques et clochers, their gastronomy festival, the weekend of Les Rameaux. Narbonne and Carcassonne are animated by many shows throughout the summer. Saint-Pierre (29 June), the fishermen's festival, is very lively in Leucate and Gruissan. In this last commune, Saint-Pierre is accompanied by a pilgrimage to Notre-Dame des Auzils. Another pilgrimage, that of Our Lady of Marceille (early October), in honour of the Virgin of Sunday. The Voix d'étoiles festival in Port-Leucate, an international festival of animated film voices, takes place at the end of October.