The Canal du Midi

More famous than its “little brother”, the Canal de Garonne canal, the Canal du Midi (by bike!) is a must for cycling holidays. Built in the 17th century in 15 years by Paul Riquet, this navigable waterway links the Mediterranean Sea in Toulouse over no less than 240 km and has been listed at the UNESCO World Heritage Site for many years as an architectural work. True technique of prowess, the Canal du Midi features 63 locks, 126 bridges, 55 aqueducts and 7 canal bridges. From few years, Unesco has also listed the landscapes of the Canal du Midi as a World Heritage Site.

Cycling the Canal du Midi

The greenway “Canal du Midi à Vélo” (Canal du Midi by bike) follows the old towpath along the canal. Contrary to the Canal de Garonne, the cycle path is not always paved. You will find many sections on dirt road or on a stabilized path. Keep an eye on the path as some plane tree roots may appear. These small constraints will not prevent you from enjoying the beauty of the landscapes crossed by the Hérault, Aude and Haute Garonne, in Occitanie.

The high points of a cycling holiday along the Canal du Midi

  1. Visit Toulouse, the pink city
  2. Stroll through the narrow streets of the cathar city of Carcassonne, listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO
  3. Cross the Lauragais countryside
  4. The vineyard landscapes of Languedoc
  5. The several works of art by Paul Riquet
  6. Tasting a good Cassoulet in Castelnaudary
  7. The 9 locks of Bézier
  8. An evening drink on the terrace of a bistro at Place de la Comédie in Montpellier

Carcassonne: A must do to visit during a cycling trip on the Canal du Midi.

You will see it emerge far away like a dream, placed like a crown on a hill in the middle of the vines. Carcassonne, with its 52 towers and its 3 km double wall, is the archetype of the medieval city as we imagine it across the world. Listed at the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997, it invites you to celebrate its 1000 years of military architecture.

Enter through the Narbonnaise gate, explore walking, the bustling city with its restaurants and shops, with a special visit in the count’s castle built in the 12th century, and in the Saint-Nazaire basilica.

Lose yourself in the narrow streets of the medieval city, climb to the top of the towers, admire the flamboyant stained-glass windows of the basilica… and have a break on a shaded terrace enjoying a drink…

The walk around the ramparts is also unforgettable. To the north, the Gallo-Roman ramparts and their horseshoe towers open onto a marvelous panorama of the Montagne Noire. To the west, walk on the medieval ramparts and admire the Lower Town and the Pyrenees.

The Canal du Midi by bike, an invitation to continue to the ocean!

The Canal du Midi is the first part of the famous greenway of the “Canal des Deux Mers à Vélo”. Also, after enjoying your first cycling holiday along the Canal du Midi, you can continue your trip on your next cycling tour along the Canal de Garonne from Toulouse to Bordeaux. If you feel like, you can even reach the Atlantic Ocean from Bordeaux along the Gironde estuary. The Canal des Deux Mers by bike will then have no secrets for you!

Your next cycling holiday?

Tempted by a cycling holiday? Contact your Evazio agency for more informations on our cycling trips along the Canal des deux Mers. Our team will help you define the most suitable circuit for your group.


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