Château d’Aguilar: A true witness to history in a breathtaking landscape

Close to Narbonne, the Occitanie region offers some exceptional sites to visit.

The “Cathar” castles, known as the citadels of vertigo, a jewel of French history and a candidate for UNESCO World Heritage listing.

Château d’Aguilar: A true witness to history in a breathtaking landscape

Perched on the heights of the Corbières in the Aude department, the majestic ruins of Château d’Aguilar offer an exceptional panorama of the wild landscapes of southern France. This 12th-century fortress, listed as a historic monument in 1949, is one of the ‘Five Sons of Carcassonne’, a network of sentinel castles that once guarded the border of the kingdom of France against the kingdoms of Aragon and Spain.

Not far from our charming gites near Narbonne, history and architecture are the order of the day for history-loving walkers.

The history of Château d’Aguilar is closely linked to the conflicts and changes of power that marked the Middle Ages in this region. Originally built as a simple defensive castle in the 11th century, Aguilar was considerably fortified in the 13th century under the reign of Louis IX, following the Crusades against the Albigensians. The double ring of walls, typical of royal fortifications of the period, bears witness to its strategic importance.

The internal structure of the castle reveals an organisation designed for war, with a central keep, courtyard, barracks and chapel, all designed to ensure the survival of the garrison in the event of a siege. Despite its fortifications, the castle changed hands several times, reflecting the political tumult of the medieval era.

Landscape and environment

Château d’Aguilar offers uninterrupted views over the vineyards of the Corbières, a region renowned for its robust, aromatic wines. The contrast between the ancient stones and the vibrant green of the vines creates a remarkable visual spectacle, particularly at sunset when the golden light envelops the ruins.

The area around Aguilar is a paradise for walkers and nature lovers. Marked trails allow you to explore the local flora and fauna, as well as discovering other historical remains scattered across the hills. The Mediterranean climate, with its hot, dry summers, accentuates the rugged beauty of the landscape, making the castle a favourite spot for lovers of history and the outdoors.

Château d’Aguilar is not only a historic monument; it is also a symbol of the cultural and natural wealth of the Aude region. Its silhouette, emerging from the Corbières landscape, continues to fascinate visitors with its tumultuous history and timeless beauty. Aguilar is an invitation to travel back in time, discovering France’s medieval history while enjoying the breathtaking scenery of the south of the country. After this breathtaking visit, you can take a break on the way back to Leucate beach for a swim in the Mediterranean after a great day’s hiking.

Not far from the Domaine de Puychene, gites de Charmes with swimming pool, located between Carcassonne Narbonne and Perpignan, you can enjoy a varied holiday in exceptional landscapes between sea and mountains. You can discover some of the medieval history of southern Europe, and discover the gastronomic and wine heritage of the Aude and Eastern Pyrenees regions.

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