Plan Your Visit to Carcassonne Castle

Carcassonne Castle | A Medieval Fortress in France

The imposing Carcassonne Castle is located in the fortified city of Carcassonne in the Languedoc-Roussillon region of southern France. This is a mediaeval fortress that dates back to the Gallo-Roman period was primarily constructed in the 12th century by the Trencavel family. When you visit Carcassonne Castle you will see that it is built mostly from stone and it is renowned for its massive double walls and 53 watchtowers. Each of these towers are over 3 kilometres in circumference.

Originally, the Carcassonne Castle served as a strategic military fortress which provided protection and control over the surrounding region. Today, it stands as a UNESCO World Heritage site and a major tourist attraction. It draws visitors from around the world with its well-preserved mediaeval architecture and historical significance. You can enjoy stunning views of the surrounding countryside from the Castle. Take in the beauty of the Pyrenees mountains and the Aude River valley as explore the magnificence of this ancient Castle.

Best Time to Visit Carcassonne Castle

Weekday vs. Weekend: Weekends tend to be busier than weekdays, attracting both local and out-of-town tourists. Opt for early morning visits on weekdays to dodge the crowds and queues.

Peak Season vs. Low Season: Carcassonne hits its peak from June to August, especially during the festive Bastille Day in July. For a quieter experience, spring (March to June) offers fewer crowds and pleasant weather.

How to Reach Carcassonne Castle

By Train

For the quickest and most convenient journey to Carcassonne Castle from Paris, the train is your top choice. Operated mainly by SNCF and TGVinOui, multiple trains depart from various Paris stations, such as Gare de Lyon and Gare de l'Est.

By Bus

For a budget-friendly option, the bus is ideal for reaching Carcassonne Castle from Paris. Departing mainly from the Quai de Bercy bus station in Paris, buses typically take around 10-12 hours to arrive at the Carcassonne bus station.

By Car

Carcassonne Castle is approximately 770 kilometers from Paris, and driving non-stop via the A20 takes about 7.5 to 8 hours. The A20 is the fastest and shortest route. Alternative routes via A71 and A75 are longer and take more time to traverse.

Know Before You Go To Carcassonne Castle


Narbonne Gate: The Narbonne Gate serves as the eastern entrance of Carcassonne Castle, where its towers unite to fortify the inner walls.

Rodez Gate: Situated to the north of Carcassonne Castle, the Rodez Gate boasts several reinforced Roman towers.

Saint-Nazaire Gate: Located to the south of Carcassonne Castle, the Saint-Nazaire Gate provides a splendid view of Carcassonne town.

Aude Gate: Formerly known as the Gate of Toulouse, the Aude Gate is the most aesthetic and impressive entrance, offering a more tranquil experience compared to other entrances

Washrooms: Carcassonne Castle features multiple toilets, including facilities for disabled visitors.

Bookshop: Visitors can purchase books on Carcassonne’s history, the castle, and other significant landmarks.

Parking: Reserved parking is available for holders of European parking cards, GIG, and GIC badges.

Guides: Options include self-guided tours, discovery tours, and conference tours.

Audio Guide: Available in English, French, and Spanish.

Adapted Tours: Dedicated tours for visitors with disabilities can be arranged based on specific needs.

The Carcassonne Castle has multiple ramparts at different entrances.

Self-guided tours are partially accessible by wheelchair.

The ramparts are not recommended for individuals with reduced mobility.

Booklets in Braille and large print are available for visually impaired visitors, detailing the history and architecture of Carcassonne Castle.

No stringent dress codes, but appropriate attire is advised for visitors.

Pets are not allowed, except assistance dogs for visitors with reduced mobility and impaired vision.

Touching artifacts and woodwork is prohibited.

Picnics are not allowed inside the castle.

Flash photography is prohibited inside the castle.

Bar Restaurant Le Sénéchal: Shaded by grapevines, renowned for its wines, artisanal ice creams, charcuterie, cheese, and warm staff.

Dame Jeanne: A cozy cafe near Carcassonne Castle, famous for delicious coffee and the infamous cassoulet.

L'Ostal: Among the best for traditional southern French cuisine, known for stews, cassoulet, and foodwire-cooked dishes.

Adélaïde: Ideal for diners seeking Instagram-worthy dishes and desserts.

When you visit Carcassonne Castle make sure to wear comfortable footwear and clothes. The terrain inside the castle is uneven with cobbled stone paths. 

If you are travelling with children then opt for a baby sling instead of a pram as the Castle has cobbled stone paths mostly. 

Dogs or any other pets are not allowed inside the Castle

There is a free shuttle from the Carcasssone to the city centre that runs every 10 minutes.


What are the opening hours of Carcassonne Castle?

The opening hours of Carcassonne castle is from 10am to 6:30 pm between April to September and 9:30am to 5 pm from October to March. Last entry is 30 minutes before closing time. 

How much is the entrance fee for Carcassonne Castle?

The entrance fee for Carcassonne Castle and its Ramparts tickets starts from INR 990 per person. Free entry is there for children below the age of 18 and for EU nationals upto the age of 26.

Are guided tours available at Carcassonne Castle?

Yes, guided tours are available for Carcassonne Castle. These tours focus on the history and architecture of the castle. With these tours you can explore the military complex, the complex alleyways of the Castle, the towers and ramparts.

Is there parking available near Carcassonne Castle?

Yes, parking is available near Carcassonne Castle. Some of the closest ones are Parking Fontgrande Cité Hôtels Carcassonne, P0 Parking Delteil and CarPark, Carcassonne.

Are there any dining options within or near Carcassonne Castle?

Yes, there are quite a few dining options within and near the Carcassonne Castle. Le Trouvère is a restaurant located within the castle walls. Famous restaurants near the Castle include La Barbacane, Le Jardin de l'Evêque, Le Blé Noir and Restaurant Le Parc Franck Putelat. When you visit Carcassonne Castle try out the Cassoulet which is a famous delicacy here. 


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