Sunsets, natural sites and breathtaking panoramas… We take you on a discovery of 13 must-see Insta spots during your holidays in Occitanie. (First published August 2021)
The Interceltic Festival of Lorient 2022 –
Viewpoints, beautiful gardens, villages steeped in history… Residents of the Occitanie region or holidaymakers, let yourself be surprised by the region’s environment and heritage!
As the start of the new school year is fast approaching, we have selected 13 exceptional places for you to enjoy your last moments of respite with family or friends. And of course, to make your followers salivate on Instagram!
The Saltworks of Aigues-Mortes (Gard)
Welcome to the heart of the Camargue! Visitors will be enchanted by the pink color (and guaranteed without filter) of the marvelous Salin d’Aigues-Mortes, in the Gard. Today, a dozen salt workers continue to harvest salt and Fleur de Sel de Camargue there.
The place is also the largest reserve of pink flamingos in Europe, and hosts nearly 200 species of birds. The flora is not to be outdone with more than 200 plant species on the site, 20 of which are protected.
The Salin can be visited by little train, on foot, by bike or in a 4X4, with or without a guide.
Waterfall of the fan in Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert (Hérault)
The reputation of the Hérault village of Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert is well established. But do you know the fan waterfall? Nestled in the Gorges de l’Hérault, about 500 meters from the Grotte de Clamouse, this marvel of nature will delight lovers of swimming in the river.
Be careful though: the path is difficult and it is important to wear good shoes. After a few minutes of exploring, you can only appreciate the beauty of this waterfall, also called “the umbrella”.
Port-Leucate pontoon (Aude)
On the way to vacation, don’t forget to stop off at Port-Leucate. The Aude seaside resort not only hosts large family beaches, but also promises you pretty viewpoints. This is the case, for example, of its famous pontoon, which juts majestically into the Mediterranean Sea. Your shots will be unforgettable!
The Organs of Ille-sur-Têt (Pyrénées-Orientales)
Breathtaking ! In the town of Ille-sur-Têt, in the Pyrénées-Orientales, “fairy chimneys” of about ten meters were born more than four million years ago, shaped by erosion.
Visitors can come and admire them by taking the small trails. Some may have fun recognizing the shapes of faces or animals in the rock. But be careful: it is not possible to climb these natural columns, as they remain very fragile.
However, do not miss the sunset over the Organs: you will discover all the magic of the place.
Rodez Cathedral (Aveyron)
An Aveyron gem, Rodez Cathedral was built between the 13th and 16th centuries. 87 meters high, its imposing bell tower was erected between 1513 and 1526 at the request of Bishop François d’Estaing.
Between 2002 and 2007, seven stained glass windows were changed and replaced by the creations of the Franco-Swiss artist Stéphane Belzère. Between tradition and modernity, this building is a great discovery that is worth the detour!
The talc quarry of Trimouns (Ariège)
This year, the Ariège career of Trimouns could not open its doors to visitors. In 2022, however, you will be able to discover this impressive talc production site, one of the largest in the world and the only one in operation in France.
In total, nearly 400,000 tonnes of ore are extracted there each year, then processed for sale at the Luzenac plant. This rare, almost unreal landscape will amaze you.
The Japanese Garden in Toulouse (Haute-Garonne)
In Toulouse, don’t miss the fabulous Japanese Garden, located between the Saint-Sernin Basilica and the Canal du Midi. Created in 1981 on the initiative of former mayor Pierre Baudis, this 7,000 m² park is home to many botanical varieties from the Far East. Inspired by the gardens of Kyoto, it is notably composed of several islands, a lake and a tea pavilion.
Ideal for recharging your batteries and taking your prettiest holiday photos… without going to the other side of the world!
The medieval city of Bassoues (Gers)
Located in the heart of Gascony, the bastide of Bassoues was born in the 13th century. However, it will be necessary to wait until the middle of the 14th century to see the ramparts of the city, the castle and the fabulous keep appear.
Today, the medieval city has lost none of its charm. Between the Church of Our Lady of the Nativity, the half-timbered walls and the surprising 16th century hall, you will find an anthology of perfect places to feed your Instagram account.
The fortified mill of Cougnaguet (Lot)
Listed as a historical monument, this 14th century mill, built by monks, is still in perfect working order. Located in the heart of the Dordogne Valley, a stone’s throw from Rocamadour and Souillac, it is possible to visit it until October 31, 2021.
Pretty river and Lot heritage: this is the perfect setting for a beautiful souvenir photo!
The Aven Armand cave (Lozère)
If you are passing through Lozère, a visit to the Aven Armand cave is a must. A listed site since 1941, this jewel is known internationally for its forest of 400 stalagmites: the highest of them reaches 30 meters and is now considered the largest stalagmite in the world.
The “Marvel of the Cevennes” has a single room, 100 meters underground, the size of a cathedral. Visitors can discover every nook and cranny in a fun way, thanks to a fabulous sound and light show on the theme “Journey to the Center of the Earth”.
This colorful escapade will remain an unforgettable memory and will certainly please all budding speleologists.
The gardens of the Palais de la Berbie in Albi (Tarn)
Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010, the Episcopal city of Albi was entirely built with terracotta. It is therefore not for nothing that it is nicknamed the “red city”.
The Palais de la Berbie, the former residence of the bishops, was built in the 13th century. Its gardens, characteristic of classical gardens, are treated naturally and delight visitors. Their breathtaking view of the Tarn makes it one of our favorite spots in the capital of the Tarn.
The village of Auvillar (Tarn-et-Garonne)
Do you know Auvillar? This adorable village of some 1,000 souls is ranked among the most beautiful villages in France. It is also an important step on the way to Saint Jacques de Compostela. We love its superb grain market, the Saint-Pierre church and the unforgettable Clock Tower.
Halfway between Montauban and Agen, the pretty little streets of this ancient Gallo-Roman city will not disappoint you!
The Pic du Midi de Bigorre (Hautes-Pyrénées)
Finally, it is impossible to miss the Pic du Midi de Bigorre and its 2,876 meters of altitude. The panoramic terraces offer you an incredible view of the Pyrenean peaks. The Pic du Midi, where lunar mapping was done for NASA in 1969, is also the oldest high mountain astronomical observatory in the world.
There is no doubt therefore: your photos can only be successful!