So wonderfully French, and yet so obviously Mediterranean, the unspoilt beauty and sleepy ambience of Languedoc and Roussillon have made this region a firm favourite with Keycamp holidaymakers for many years.
With vast stretches of gently sloping, golden, sandy beaches, lapped by warm waters, Languedoc and Roussillon are perfect for family sunshine holidays in the South of France. At the same time, those seeking out watersports will not be disappointed. Indeed, this southern tip of France is particularly well-known for providing great windsurfing opportunities.
The Languedoc region stretches from the Rhône to the Garonne, with Montpellier proudly holding the role of capital of Bas Languedoc, an area covering the Mediterranean coast. With a coastline reaching out from the Camargue to Catalonia, it’s hardly surprising the locals consider themselves more Catalan than French.
This is particularly evident in the mouth-watering regional specialities, which rely heavily on olive oil, garlic, as well as all those aromatic Provencal herbs. Cassoulet is a local favourite, as is Aligot, made with mashed potato and cheese. The region is particularly famous for its honey as well as many well-known French wines including Minervois, Corbières and Fitou.
In recent years a string of lively, modern resorts such as Cap d’Agde have been developed along the coastline. Inland, life has remained unchanged for generations, and you can enjoy the unspoilt beauty of the landscape dotted with sleepy villages, vineyards and river gorges with secluded beaches and caves. The ancient walled city of Carcassonne, and Béziers with its beautiful old quarter, are within easy driving distance of the coast as are Spanish Catalonia and the Pyrénées.
For a day out in excellent walking country, pack a picnic and head over to this spectacular gorge in the Pyrénéen foothills. If there’s time, why not cool off with a swim in one of the rock pools around Sorède?
The capital of the region, Perpignan blends elegant pavement cafés and tree-lined avenues with a bustling commercial centre. Home of the French-Catalan people, Perpignan is rich in museums, and Catalan is still spoken in the Old Quarter. The last key city before the Spanish border, it’s not surprising to discover that the essence of Perpignan is Catalan through and through. During your visit, take a stroll along the elegant Promenade des Platanes, the Place de la Loge (a hub of town centre life) and the lively Place Arago, with its palm trees and magnolias. The 15th Century Palais de Députation is also worth exploring.
This delightful old town and fishing port sits on the Côte Vermielle in the foothills of the Albères. A final outpost before the Spanish border, Collioure boasts cobbled streets and a fortified church that, at first glance, appears to be sat in the Mediterranean. During your visit, explore the Port d’Amont (Old Port), with its fishing nets drying in the sun and numerous brightly painted boats. Then head to the flower filled streets of the old district behind the church. Along the town’s seaside promenade, pavement cafés provide the perfect place to rejuvenate. The two small beaches are popular with younger visitors.
Every Bastille Day (14th July), this perfectly restored medieval fortress city is engulfed in a totally amazing firework display. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a trip to Carcassonne is like stepping inside your own personal Tardis and stepping out in the Middle Ages. With two miles of ramparts and splendid views over the surrounding area from its watchtowers, Carcassonne could easily be the highlight of your holiday.
The Camargue is considered by many to be one of the most picturesque natural settings in Europe and the rich fauna and flora of the region are protected within the Camargue Regional Nature Park (Parc Naturel Régional de Camargue). Nestling between two branches of the Rhône River, this unspoilt landscape at the Rhône Delta, is famous as the home of white horses, pink flamingos and black bulls.
A vast lagoon just behind Sète, the Étang de Thau is approximately 20 kilometres in length and provides an important centre for oyster and mussel farming. The Étang is separated from the Mediterranean by a narrow stretch of sand. The waters benefit from strict environmental rules that ensure they remain clean and pure.
Sitting on the edge of the Thau lagoon, Sète began life as an island, but is today linked to the mainland by two narrow sandbars. Known as the French Venice, Sète is built around a network of canals. Wander up the 170-metre limestone outcrop of Mont St-Clair that sits behind the town, then maybe relax on the superb beach, or take a boat trip around the harbour area. The main shopping streets are to the east of Sète. There are also excellent seafood restaurants along the harbour
Visit the world’s tallest bridge, designed by Norman Foster rising an impressive 885 feet above the Tarn Valley.
If you’re looking for a truly ‘splashing’ time, this exciting American-style waterpark is found at Cap d’Agde, Fréjus and Argélès and offers thrills and spills aplenty.
You can experience the thrill of scuba-diving at Camping La Sirène, Hippocampe or Bois du Valmarie.
Sailing and windsurfing lessons are available at the Club Carabasse beach club, Vias.
Taking its name from Guilhem, one of the foremost warriors of the Charlemagne court, this pretty mountain village is just a short drive north of Gignac and is steeped in religious history. The village is located at the entrance to the Gorges du Verdus and ancient tiled houses spill down onto the banks of the babbling waters. Must-sees include the Place de la Liberté square, Gellone Abbey and the museum of bygone days, Musée d’Antan.
If you followed Rick Stein’s culinary adventures along the Canal du Midi, a cruise along this exceptionally peaceful waterway is probably high on your list of things to do. A UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site, the Canal du Midi was completed in the 17th Century and links the Atlantic and Mediterranean oceans. Take a half day-cruise along this poplar-lined canal running from Toulouse to Marseillan.
A city of festivals, Béziers is also the wine producing capital of Languedoc and boasts an imposing cathedral overlooking the River Orb. Throughout the summer, numerous glittering parades adorn the city streets, with many having a distinctive Spanish flavour. The summer festival, Feria d’Eté, is particularly worth looking out for. Béziers has several weekly markets, including the Friday flower market, and Les Caves de Béziers is the place to pick up local wines. Right across the town, tradition and a love of rugby stand side-by-side.
This fortified town, dating from the 11th Century, occupies a spectacular position at the meeting point of the rivers Cady and Tet. A tour of the ramparts is a must during your visit, as is a stroll along Rue St-Jean. If there’s time, the nearby caves of Cova Bastera, Grotte des Canalettes and Grotte des Grandes Canalettes are all worth visiting.
Once one of the richest abbeys in southern France, this former monastery receives many visitors each year thanks to its stunning architecture and beautiful gardens. While you're here, why not sample some of the home-grown organic produce for your lunch, washed down with a glass of wine from the vineyard?
This area is renowed for its wine, so why not take the opportunity to try a spot of wine tasting? Many of our parcs in this area offer self-guided Wine Notes in the Keycamp reception. You can also download them from our website once you have booked by logging into ‘My Keycamp’.
A large, lively parc with a superb pool complex, close to a five-mile stretch of sandy beaches at Argelès-sur-Mer and ideally placed to help you discover the Pyrénées.
Set on a hillside just across the road from the beach of Le Racou, Bois de Valmarie offers a stunning, split-level pool complex and is just a short walk from the bars and restaurants of lively Argelès.
Ideally situated with direct access to a long sand and shingle beach, the main attraction here is the impressive Californian style swimming pool complex, surrounded by attractive sun terraces.
A firm family favourite, this small parc has a lively holiday atmosphere and an excellent range of facilities nearby, including a long, sandy beach just a mile away.
This spacious parc is ideal for a lively family holiday. There is an attractive swimming pool complex where you can even take scuba diving lessons in high season.
With direct beach access, shaded pitches, superb facilities and nearby town with excellent restaurants, Le Brasilia is a great choice for the whole family.
Camping Club Mar Estang is fun central for families. On parc you’ll find a swimming pool complex with waterslides and waterchutes, shops and a range of sports facilities.
If you're looking for a lively family holiday, Les Tropiques is a perfect choice. With a superb beach close by, this parc offers excellent facilities and entertainment.
With its three pools, sun terraces and waterslides, Les Sablons is full of fun, and is set in pleasant grounds. There are also lots of things to do here for active families.
Yelloh! Village Sérignan Plage has a wide range of superb facilities on offer including a fantastic pool plus Spa/Wellness Centre. And there's also direct access to a beautiful beach.
Aloha Village is a superbly-equipped parc offering a variety of facilities and activities for everyone. Plus there's direct access to a lovely sandy beach where you can also take part in various watersports.
A complete Mediterranean holiday village in the heart of Vias Plage and on the edge of a long sandy beach. Ideal for a lively beach holiday.
Featuring a landscaped swimming pool complex offering four pools, with a glorious, shelving sandy beach just a short walk away, this is the ideal place for a fun, family holiday.
A wonderful vineyard parc located on the Sommières heights between Camargue, the Mediterranean Sea and the Cévennes.
Close to the beach and situated in the centre of Argèles Plage, this lively parc offers a superb holiday destination in the heart of Catalan country.
Just a short stroll to beautiful Collioure, Criques de Porteils is found in a beautiful setting overlooking the sea. This parc is a perfect choice for couples.
Les Pins is a lovely parc with a great pool complex and offers amazing views of the Pyrénées. Lovely Collioure, Carcassonne and Perpignan are within visiting distance too.
Le Beach Garden is the quietest parc in Marseillan Plage located peacefully next to the beach with mature gardens, although still close to the lively resort town.
A lively resort with its own private swimming pool, situated just 50m from the sea front.
An exhilarating complex of pools and waterchutes, inventive children's clubs and first rate sports facilities make this a hard place to leave.
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