For the 2019 season, Locaboat has opened a new base at Bram for cruising on the world-famous Canal du Midi. Bram is a former Gallo-Roman citadel and Languedoc’s largest circular village… when you stop here to explore the unusual back streets and alleyways, it feels like stepping back in time. Ideally located between Carcassonne and Castelnaudary, Bram is the starting-point for a memorable canal boat cruise that will wake up all your senses: it’s perfect freedom on the waterways.
Yum! Enjoy the local food
The department of Aude is delicious and serves itself up on a plate! On your canal boat holiday, don’t miss the famous Languedoc speciality that you can sample in and around Castelnaudary: cassoulet. Carcassonne and Toulouse also vie for the title ‘world capital of cassoulet’, but this dish was invented in the back streets of Castelnaudary during the middle ages. To cope with famine, the inhabitants decided to pool their reserves of bacon, pork, beans, sausages and other meats… the recipe for cassoulet was born, and it filled people’s bellies so well that the locals claimed it helped them to defeat the English!
Mmm! Enjoy the flavours from top-notch vineyards
Whether you’re a real wine-buff, a keen amateur or just interested in wines, you’ll enjoy the bouquets and flavours along the wine trail. Even from your boat you can admire the vineyards with their perfectly aligned rows of vines. When you go ashore, all the well-known appellations are at your fingertips: the discreet perfume of a Fitou, the complex and overwhelming bouquet of Languedoc’s famous Corbières, or the fruity notes of a Minervois. Just breathe it all in. Our tip: stop off at the Quai des Tonneliers beside the Canal du Midi and head to the ‘Maison des vins du Minervois’, a wine discovery centre where growers can introduce you to their own selection of wines.
Wow!… Admire the majesty of Carcassonne’s towers
Carcassonne is famous for its majestic medieval citadel, which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and symbolises 2000 years of conquest. Today, this relic of the crusades exists side by side with the lower town. Moor at the central station and in ten minutes you’ll reach the Place Carnot, with its very English tea room. Then head for the Prosper Montagné market to fill up your basket with all the best local produce, which you can enjoy later that evening on the pontoon as you watch the last rays of the springtime sun.
Fascinating…Touch relics of the past
Many boats cruise straight past the port of Bram, but we really do advise you to stop there, to explore this former Roman village. It was called Eburomagus in ancient times and its most beautiful relics are now displayed in the archaeological museum in modern-day Bram, just a few hundred metres from the Canal. The museum contains hundreds of objects from the village’s Gallo-Roman past and makes a fascinating visit, together with the circular walk around the old streets and the rows of well-preserved façades.
Tadaa!… Spotlight on the Canal du Midi
• “One of the wonders of the world” (UNESCO listed in 1996)
• A taste of the Mediterranean, minus the salt and with extra sunshine
• Free as the air on a getaway holiday in the open countryside outside Carcassonne
• View the world through rose-tinted glasses: see the famous pink facades of Toulouse
• Green, yellow, blue; the colours of nature, the gentle shade of an olive-
tree, the dazzling spectacle of a field of sunflowers, all framed by thousands of plane