Carcassonne, Cathar Country & Catalonia

8 Days from £729 | September, October

The ramparts of Carcassonne, the mystery of Rennes-le-Château, the surrealism of Dalì’s Theatre Museum, combined with a visit to modernist Barcelona, and stays in unspoilt locations on the Catalan coast and in a pleasant spa town in the hills of Roussillon – this is a holiday to one of the most scenic parts of the Mediterranean. The area is also fabulously rich in history, legend and stunning castles. Discover the land of the heretical Cathars and solve the mystery of Rennes le Chateau – inspiration for Dan Brown’s ‘Da Vinci Code’.

Carcassonne, Cathar Country & Catalonia

Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this holiday* - 92%
* as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details

  • 3 nights hb in Spanish Catalonia, 4 nights hb in the Roussillon area of France
  • Visits to Rennes-le- Château, Carcassonne, and Barcelona
  • Entrance to the Dalì Museum in Figueres, and to the Museum in Rennes-le-Château

Day One: Flight to Catalonia. On arrival, transfer to your hotel on the Catalan coast for two nights half board accommodation. Transfer time 50 minutes.

Day Two: Optional half-day excursion to the Roman city of Tarragona where you can see the amphitheatre, port and beach and stroll through the medieval centre. Under the Romans, Tarragona was the capital of the Province of Northern Spain and home to the Emperor Augustus – a Temple in his honour stood on the site of the current Cathedral. Your excursion includes a walk with expert guide.

Day Three: Today you depart for France. En route you will stop in Dalì’s home town of Figueras with its surreal (in the truest sense!) theatre-museum (entrance included). The Dalì Museum, with its luminous-egg façade, seems to want to stretch your mind even before you enter! From there you proceed to your hotel in Amelie-les-Bains, for four nights half board accommodation. Distance today is 156 miles, mainly motorway.

Day Four: Full-day included excursion to Carcassonne and Rennes- le- Château. Although a longish day, it is packed with interest. You start with a scenic drive past two spectacular Cathar castles – Puilaurens, perched high above the valley, and Quéribus, whose rocky spur saw the last stand of the Cathars in 1255. In Rennes-le-Château you will see the church, presbytery, villa, tower and grounds built by the priest, Abbé Sauniere, at the end of the 19th century. You will discover the true extent of the mystery that has spawned so many books and several tv programmes. You will not be the first to try and solve the mystery – a bye-law had to be passed to stop unauthorised digging in the village by treasure-hunters!

You continue to Carcassonne for lunch (not included), and a free afternoon in the most spectacular walled city on earth. A UNESCO Heritage site, the cité is a remarkable defensive structure with barbican, dry moat, outer and inner walls, inaccessible watch-towers, posterns, loopholes and arrow slits. The last part of your circular route is motorway, and you arrive back at the hotel at approx 1830. Total today is just under 200 miles.

Days Five and Six: There is an optional half day excursion to the walled village of Prats de Mollo, just 12 miles up the Vallespir valley, on the side of Mount Canigou. There is also an optional excursion to nearby Perpignan, the capital of the Roussillon, and to the artists’ resort of Collioure. A port since Roman times, many crusades to the Holy Land set off from here, and reproductions of works by artists who painted in Collioure (Matisse and Dérain in particular) will be found on the quaysides.

Day Seven: Today you return to the Costa Dorada for your last night, again on a half board basis. En route there is a short tour of, and free time to explore, the exciting city of Barcelona, capital of Catalonia. Distance today is similar to Day Three, approx 160 miles.

Day Eight: Free time until your transfer to the airport for your return flight.

We have prepared some brief historical notes about Catharism and the mystery of Rennes-le-Château. You can find them here.

A Walking Holiday in this area is also available. Details elsewhere on our website and in our Walking Holidays brochure.

Carcassonne, Cathar Country & Catalonia

Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this holiday* - 92%
* as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details

NUBAHOTEL ****, Coma-Ruga (first two, and last nights)
The hotel stands close to the broad sandy beach. This unspoilt resort is quiet out of season, rather busier at weekends from June to September when there is an entertainment programme in the hotel, with music on Saturday evenings. A reasonable selection of shops, bars and restaurants is about 10 minutes walk (700m) away, and the railway station with half-hourly departures to Barcelona is about 15 minutes walk. There is also a local bus service to the nearby county town of El Vendrell, birthplace of Pablo Casals: his villa, now an interesting museum, is within walking distance of the hotel. The hotel has a spa centre (a reasonable extra charge applies), restaurant, bar, lounge, and outdoor pool. Rooms, which all have balcony, also have 2 queen size beds, bathroom with hairdryer, phone, air-conditioning/heating, satellite LCD tv, and safety deposit box (charge applies). Free wifi in public areas. (
Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this hotel* - 82%
*as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details
HOTEL DE LA REINE AMELIE ***, Amélie-les-Bains (four nights)
In the rugged Vallespir Valley, alongside the River Tech, Amelie is a spa town 20 miles from the coast and surrounded by pleasant mountain scenery. The hotel has a bar, lounge area, restaurant and comfortable bedrooms with private bath/shower, wc, tv, free wifi, and phone. Some have a balcony too. (
Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this hotel* - 82%
*as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details
Escorted Holiday - Carcassonne, Cathar Country & Catalonia
Holiday code: 7CAM
Supplements per person:
Single Room: Oct 2018 No supplement
Other Dates: £120
Travel Insurance: £44.95
Supplements on some holidays vary by departure date - the applicable price will be shown when booking.

Fly FromDateDaysAirlineDep.Rtn.AvailabilityPriceFly ToSingle

AberdeenThu 06/09/20188BA via LHR11051730Places Available879Barcelona12025ABZ17CAMR4

AberdeenThu 04/10/20188BA via LHR11051730Last few places849Barcelona0 (on request)8ABZ17CAMR6

Belfast IntlThu 06/09/20188Easyjet17252330Places Available759Barcelona12025BFS17CAMR4

Belfast IntlThu 04/10/20188Easyjet17252330Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8BFS17CAMR6

BirminghamThu 06/09/20188Ryanair15451520Places Available759Barcelona12025BHX17CAMR4

BirminghamThu 04/10/20188Ryanair15451520Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8BHX17CAMR6

BristolThu 06/09/20188Easyjet14451415Places Available759Barcelona12025BRS17CAMR4

BristolThu 04/10/20188Easyjet14451415Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8BRS17CAMR6

CardiffThu 06/09/20188Vueling15401505Places Available759Barcelona12025CWL17CAMR4

CardiffThu 04/10/20188Vueling16401605Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8CWL17CAMR6

DublinThu 06/09/20188Ryanair12301820Places Available759Barcelona12025DUB17CAMR4

DublinThu 04/10/20188Ryanair12301820Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8DUB17CAMR6

East MidlandsThu 06/09/20188Ryanair09351450Places Available759Barcelona12025EMA17CAMR4

East MidlandsThu 04/10/20188Ryanair09351450Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8EMA17CAMR6

EdinburghThu 06/09/20188Ryanair06301255Places Available759Barcelona12025EDI17CAMR4

EdinburghThu 04/10/20188Ryanair06301255Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8EDI17CAMR6

GlasgowThu 06/09/20188Jet207351410Places Available799Barcelona12025GLA17CAMR4

GlasgowThu 04/10/20188Jet207351410Last few places769Barcelona0 (on request)8GLA17CAMR6

HeathrowThu 06/09/20188BA14301300Places Available799Barcelona12025LHR17CAMR4

HeathrowThu 04/10/20188BA14301300Last few places769Barcelona0 (on request)8LHR17CAMR6

Leeds-BradfordThu 06/09/20188Jet208401445Places Available799Barcelona12025LBA17CAMR4

Leeds-BradfordThu 04/10/20188Jet208401445Last few places769Barcelona0 (on request)8LBA17CAMR6

LiverpoolThu 06/09/20188Easyjet07001230Places Available759Barcelona12025LPL17CAMR4

LiverpoolThu 04/10/20188Easyjet07051235Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8LPL17CAMR6

London GatwickThu 06/09/20188Easyjet14201650Places Available759Barcelona12025LGW17CAMR4

London GatwickThu 04/10/20188Easyjet14251650Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8LGW17CAMR6

LutonThu 06/09/20188Easyjet07001205Places Available759Barcelona12025LTN17CAMR4

LutonThu 04/10/20188Easyjet07001205Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8LTN17CAMR6

ManchesterThu 06/09/20188Vueling14251345Places Available759Barcelona12025MAN17CAMR4

ManchesterThu 04/10/20188Ryanair06251155Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8MAN17CAMR6

PrestwickThu 06/09/20188Ryanair17302345Places Available759Barcelona12025PIK17CAMR4

PrestwickThu 04/10/20188Ryanair17302345Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8PIK17CAMR6

StanstedThu 06/09/20188Ryanair08151220Places Available759Barcelona12025STN17CAMR4

StanstedThu 04/10/20188Ryanair08151220Last few places729Barcelona0 (on request)8STN17CAMR6

Prices shown are based on the shared occupancy of twin/double standard rooms, and are subject to availability. Please refer to ‘Accommodation’ for details of any room supplements (including single rooms) and extended stay costs that apply to this holiday. Further details in our FAQ.

Data as at 16/08/2018 at 17:47:05

Enjoyable holiday - Very interesting. Pau the Guide made the places seem really good. Food and Staff were great at the Hotel De La Reine Amelie.

Mrs B, Harrogate

My friends and I have recently returned from the Carcassonne holiday which fulfilled and surpassed all our expectations. Great hotels, friendly staff, especially in Amelie. The trips were wonderful and have left us with great memories. A special mention to our wonderful tour guide, who was amazing! Always on hand, patient, informative and sincere. Preferred Travel Services will certainly be our first point of contact for future holidays following this experience. Thank you.

Ms M, Lanarkshire

My Sister and I have just returned from our Catalonia holiday staying in Hotel Vita and Hotel La Reine Amelie. We had a very good and experienced Tour Manager who enhanced the holiday. The hotels were very good and we would recommend Preferred Travel Services to anyone. We thoroughly enjoyed the whole holiday. The priority booking was good and the transfers were brilliant.

Ms L, West Bromwich

An enjoyable holiday to Carcassonne, Cathar Country and Catalonia. The flights, transfers, guides, hotels and Tony our Tour Guide all added to the enjoyment and the timings and arrangements were first class. The coach was very comfortable and driver very skilled and optional excursions good value. Although we all travelled on a single basis we formed a group of 8 all of whom enjoyed the trip and will certainly travel with Preferred Travel Services again. It must be very difficult to organise a trip with so many separate departures from the UK and those involved in the arrangements should be complimented.

Mr S, Wiltshire

We have just returned to Aberdeen from your escorted tour to Carcassonne, Cathar Country and Catalonia. It was so enjoyable that we want to express our thanks. From the start, all arrangements went perfectly and without a hitch. This was due in no small part to your excellent Tour Director and the knowledgeable guides we met throughout the various excursions. Mention must also be made of the coach driver, who transported us everywhere with total professionalism. We look forward to receiving your next brochure.

Mrs B & Mr F , Kincardineshire

Thank you for a very enjoyable holiday. First class; Tour Director and his Driver made us feel very safe and cared for. Loved the village of Amelie-les-Bains, staff were so friendly y. My Friend and I hope we can fit another holiday in with Preferred Travel Services next year. Thanks again.

Mrs M, Northumberland

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Don't forget, we fly from 20 airports right across the UK.
Most of our holidays include half board as standard.
All of our holidays have included visits and tours.

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