Less than 18 minutes from our guest house near Carcassonne, La Cité is a medieval architectural ensemble in the French town of Carcassonne in the department of Aude. It is situated on the right bank of the Aude river, south-east of the present town. This fortified medieval town, whose origins date back to the Gallo-Roman period, owes its fame to its double enclosure, almost 3 km long and comprising fifty-two towers, which spectacularly dominates the Aude valley. The city also includes a castle (the county castle) and a basilica (the Saint-Nazaire basilica).
Saved from destruction by the action and tenacity of the archaeologist Jean-Pierre Cros-Mayrevieille, then restored in the 19th century in a sometimes controversial manner under the direction of Viollet-le-Duc then Boeswillwald, the City of Carcassonne has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1972. The count's castle, fortifications and towers belong to the State and are managed by the Centre des Monuments Nationaux, while the lices and the rest of the Cité are part of the municipal domain.