Mediterranean Living in Occitanie

Originally posted on & updated on 15th June, 2024

In 2016, the French region of Languedoc-Roussillon underwent some changes as it merged with its neighbour Midi-Pyrenees to form a sort of super-region that is now called Occitanie.

Covering much of the South of France and drenched in sunshine the area now encompasses a hugely diverse landscape with a population over five million. As a former province of France, Occitanie has seen many changes through the years, it’s historic, cultural and geographic story is told through the smaller cities, towns and villages that are scattered throughout the region. Forgetting geography for a moment we are focussing on why this area of France is loved by its locals and visitors and is even known as the ‘real South of France’.

Along the Canal du Midi in Aude

The Aude department is home to the famous fortified city of Carcassonne as well as the cosmopolitan city of Narbonne. You will know of many historic stories told about Carcassonne but more recently it welcomed renowned chef Rick Stein to its waterways as he travelled along the Canal du Midi during his much-acclaimed TV series, ‘A French Odyssey’.

Carcassonne also benefits from flights to the UK as well as being France’s second most visited tourist spot. Although Aude is one of the windier departments the climate is generally warm with typical Mediterranean weather and an abundance of historical sites throughout the cities, towns and even within the smaller villages. Once again Aude is also an alternative to the more expensive French Riviera, properties here can be found in Carcassonne, Limoux and Narbonne, some of our properties for sale in the Aude are newly renovated others are modern villas and some offer business opportunities.

Pyrénées-Orientales: Ski, Sea & Spain

Formally known as Roussillon this area of France was originally part of Spain until 1659 and has since retained its Catalan charm. The department is filled typically Spanish traditions such as the Sardana dance, bullfights and Catalan is spoken by many of its locals. Dominating the landscape are the towering Pyrenees but it’s at the foothills of these famous peaks where you will find some of Languedoc’s most interesting sights.

Much of the landscape is made up of spectacular castles, ruins and abbeys that appear to have stood still in time, surrounding these attractions are places you must experience during your time in the Pyrenees-Orientales, including museums, family-friendly water parks and a collection of natural wonders. The historic theme can still be seen towards the coast in the town of Perpignan and Collioure but it’s here where you will find smaller towns that each offer the charm of coast with a Spanish twist. We have many outstanding properties for sale in Pyrenees Orientales.

Dramatic & Natural Lozère

To look at, Lozère’s could be mistaken for land from the prehistoric times, where the mountains reach the sky and the clouds form shadows that cover whole villages across the uneven landscape. As you take a closer look, you’ll see that this isn’t actually far from the truth, dramatic horizons are complemented with never-ending unspoiled scenery. Lozère’s most impressive natural highlights include the Gorges du Tarn and the abundance of small pretty villages that sit peacefully in the scenic surroundings. Due to its position towards the north of Occitanie, Lozère forms part of the famous Massif Central mountain range and boasts gentle rolling hills and woodland as you head further South. To truly explore Lozère you must follow the route between Les Vignes and Pont-de-Montvert, passing through picturesque towns and taking in the impressive gorges that include some of the deepest in Europe.

Provençal Lifestyle in Historic Gard

Moving South from Lozère takes you into the Gard where prehistoric landscape turns into an Ancient Roman historical site. History could take over here but instead, it mostly sits patiently and proud as visitors pass through admiring the monuments and museums before they head into the beautiful and sought-after towns of Uzes, Ales and Bagnols-sur-Cèze. The Gard borders Provence and Rhone-Alps offering access to a change of pace and scenery from the calm, beautiful department of the Gard. Also nearby is the city of Avignon and its international airport and TGV train line. Although the Gard is mostly ‘inland’ it does have a short stretch of Mediterranean coastline near the fortified town of Aigues-Mortes. History runs through the streets in the Gard, binding its culture through attractions in Nimes, the Pont du Gard and out into the Cevennes National Park. We have many delightful properties for sale in the Gard, some with countryside surroundings and others found in small medieval villages.

Mediterranean Vibes in Hérault

Lozère and the Gard display the wonderful differences between the departments within Occitanie, however, Hérault contains contrasts of its own inside its borders. Modern coastal resorts are paired with traditional fishing towns and busy inner cities partner quaint villages. The coast stretches from Béziers to Montpellier and dotted in between you will find a number of villages and market towns, the most famous being the unspoiled town of Pézenas.

The seaside resorts allow you to enjoy the Mediterranean climate and sandy beaches without the premiums of the French Riviera. Although many of these beach developments are relatively new you will be pleasantly surprised to see the Cathedral at Maguelone located on a piece of land just off the coast and filled with history. The list of towns and villages seem endless offering locals and tourists, cultural, historic and lively places to live or visit. If you are thinking of making Hérault your home, we have many properties for sale in Occitanie starting from just £120,000 in some of the most popular towns.

Occitanie, is in Easy Reach

Only here will you find such contrasting departments, this region has beautifully maintained the true feel of France bringing diverse landscapes, culture, and sights to everyone who lives or visits here. Soaking up the sunshine in Occitanie is closer than you thought, the region has four airports found in Carcassonne, Perpignan, Montpellier and Béziers and boasts 110 miles of coastline.

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