The Château de Puilaurens (fr. Château de Puilaurens) is one of the Cathar castles in the commune of Lapradelle-Puilaurens in the Aude département. The castle is located above the Boulzane Valley and the villages of Lapradelle and Puilaurens. There is a path from Axat to the castle.
Puilaurens is one of the “Five Sons of Carcassonne“, along with Quéribus, Aguilar, Termes and Peyrepertuse: five castles strategically placed to defend the French border against the Spanish, until the border was moved in 1659.
The castle here had belonged to the Abbey of Saint-Michel de Cuxa before it was acquired by the King of Aragon in 1162. As Aragonese property it was outside the territory ravaged by the Crusaders during the Cathar wars. Like Queribus it therefore provided a refuge for those fleeing from the invading forces. Those who took refuge there included both Cathars and faidits, that is to say those who had forfeited their property because of their opposition to the invaders. These faidits included high nobles, such as Guillaume de Peyrepertuse.
Entrance costs around 5 euros per adult, 3 euros for children up to 15 years old. Château de Puilaurens is open every day from April 1 to September 30th, weekends only from 1 February to 31 March.
Coordinates: 42°48′13.5″N 2°17′58″E