Château de Peyrepertuse (Occitan: Castèl de Pèirapertusa) is an ancient Cathar fortified castle, now in ruins, whose remains stand in the commune of Duilhac-sous-Peyrepertuse in the Aude department, Occitania region (France).

It is located on a limestone ridge at about an altitude of 800 m, on top of a hill which separates Duilhac from the town of Rouffiac-des-Corbières, towering over scrubland and vineyards. A strategic position which enables one at the same time to see far into the valleys that circle it, to control the mountain passes, or to send communication signals to the château de Quéribus a little further south.

The view of the castle from Duilhac (to the south) is impressive thanks to the 30 to 40 meter cliff on which the Castle is perched. The main entrance is located on the north side, but in the time of the Cathars, a secret passage through a narrow path behind a rocky overhang allowed entrance by means of a detachable ladder. Today, the secret passage’s postern is closed off, but the path is still there.

Peyrepertuse is one of the “Five Sons of Carcassonne“, along with Quéribus, Aguilar, Termes and Puilaurens: five castles strategically placed to defend the French border against the Spanish, until the border was moved in 1659.

Rates and working hours

Cost: 8 euros; kids 6-12, 4 euros.
Open: Jan-Mar, Oct-Dec, 10h to 17h or 18h
open: Apr-Aug, 9h to 19h or 20h

Coordinates: 42°52′14″N 2°33′26″E

How to get to?

From Paris: 8 hr 44 min (883 km) via A71 and A75

From Toulouse: 2 hr 36 min (160 km) via A61

From Andorra: 3 hr 18 min (160 km) via D613

From Barcelona: 2 hr 51 min (237 km) via AP-7

From Madrid: 8 hr 14 min (843 km) via A-2 and AP-2

From Monaco: 5 hr 31 min (533 km) via A8 and A9

From Moscow: 36 hr (3,458 km) via E30/M1

From Belgrade: 18 hr 4 min (1,836 km) via E70

From Istanbul: 28 hr (2,785 km) via E70

From Bern: 7 hr 44 min (791 km) via A9

See here Pyrenees travel guide

See here France travel guide

See here Spain travel guide

Read more: Castles and fortresses of Spain and France with Mathew Kristes ...