Trausse pictured below, is a village, a "commune" in the Minervois, a vineyard area of the Languedoc Roussillon, (now re-named Occitanie being the Midi-Pyrenees region) and the village is at the base of the Montagne Noire well into the south-western part of France. The village itself was founded probably in the 8th or 9th century and has a population of about 400 people. It only received street name signs in the mid 1990s.
The nearest regional city of Carcassonne (which
has the ancient Medieval walled "La Cite") is a half hours drive east of
Trausse, while Toulouse is about 1 to 2 hours drive, as well as
Montpellier about 2 - 2 hours & fifteen minutes drive.
La Cite in the day and again on the night of Bastille Day.
The airports to
fly into would be Toulouse or Montpellier for usual type flights (e.g.
Lufthansa, KLM, BA, Air France) or Barcelona with Singapore Airlines or Emirates. Easyjet fly from Orly in Paris to
Toulouse, & Gatwick London to Toulouse. Ryanair now has flights also to and from Toulouse to various cities in Europe Or Carcassonne for Ryanair from
Stansted in London & the Midlands & also from Dublin & other cities. Car rentals agencies are in the
three of those airports - is usually easy to deal with any of the
agencies direct on the web & sometimes cheaper to deal with ryan air or
easyjet car rentals on the web. If you are going to be away for longer
than 21 days you can lease either Peugeot, Citroen or Renault (see our
Useful Links) which is a lot cheaper in both rental & insurance than
normal rent, & take note that diesel (gazole) is the cheaper fuel to buy
especially from supermarket fuel outlets.
Numerous Castles from the
12th & 13th centuries are all with 1-2 hours drive of Trausse, with the
Canal du Midi about 15 minutes away - this is the area of the Cathars.
You may want to read up on the Cathar History of the Languedoc - try
Stephen O'Shea's book "The Perfect Heresy"- Profile Books 2000 or Zoe
Oldenberg's "The Massacre of Montsegur".
Trausse is completely surrounded by vineyards & has in fact 4
vignerons in the village & is within 10-15 minutes of dozens of wineries
where one can also have a "degustation" (tasting). I can book you on a variety of wine/history tours as well as cooking
tours (see useful links) when you make a booking in one of the houses. Trausse is situated
in a relatively flat valley and for those people who like biking the
whole area is extremely suitable.Actually the Tour de France in July each year comes nearby & in fact in 2016 did come through Trausse which was exciting (see photos). Within 15 minutes by car or 60 minutes
or so by bike are the foothills of the Montagnes Noires (Black
Mountains), where the vineyards still grasp onto the rocky soil and yet
the scenery as you ascend is magnificent. By car over the mountains for
an 80 minute drive is Castres and a further 20 minutes on is the ancient
city of Albi, with the unique Cathedral Ste-Cecile, the Toulouse-Lautrec
Museum & the Laperouse Museum not to mention classic shopping. Spain is
110 minutes on the autoroute.
The town of Caunes Minervois with winding streets, ancient Abbey,
restaurants and tapas bar is about 3 klms away while Peyriac &
Rieux Minervois (both have restaurants & bars) are about 3 kms & 4 kms
respectively & the church in Rieux is well worth a visit. The
Mediterranean and the beaches of Narbonne (Narbonne Plage) & Gruissan (Gruissan
Plage, Les Auygardes) are within 50 minutes drive while the beaches
around Leucate & onto Collioure are about 60 + minutes - a far nicer
alternative. Lac Jouarres with swimming & water sports is a 20 minute
drive for those who want to cool off in summer & there is a public
swimming pool in Peyriac Minervois. (Lac Jouarres pics)
The weather in Trausse can be quite warm late May, to hot in June
through to August & again quite warm in September with cool to cold
days/evenings in the April-May and September -October time period - it
is always necessary to bring a waterproof/windproof type of jacket in
case of changes in weather. The winter months of November to March are
cold and a heavy coat/jacket/scarf and the use of the fire within the
house would be required. It has been known to snow near here, but is not
Excellent walking abounds in the mountains with valley and canyon walks or road
walks to 10th century churches hidden in valleys deep in the mountains.(
about the walks) The mountains are much cooler in the summer.
Likewise the area has several very good eating establishments with Lo
Cagorol Restaurant 30 minutes away in the village of Aigne, with menus of 3
courses from approximately 20 Euro per person. Smaller
establishments are in adjacent villages and some menus start at
approximately 12 Euro per person and can include wine.
CLICK to see a VIDEO OF BASTILLE DAY 14th July 2014
Trausse has an epicerie called Epicerie de la Tour which opens mornings
and most afternoons and is closed on a Monday. Being a general store she sells a mix of things,
toiletries,laundry needs, bread, croissants, pastries,
and other food products, local wine, as well as fruit and vegetables.
There are tables inside and out where you can have a coffee and croissants.
On Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays vendors in vans selling various food visit
the village (our own little market).
They are announced by loud speaker or sounding of horn. Essentially Trausse
is a typical French village with ancient streets, friendly locals, a 12th century Tour (tower)
and a central place for parking which is near the houses (about 40 metres)
- some of the streets are too narrow for cars to travel. There is a Post Office
incorporated in the Maire building and a very good electrical store in the village.
Our restaurant La Table des Vignerons has French and Moroccan cuisine.
I know 2 caterers in the adjoining village who can provide meals for
those not wanting to drive. Their details are given with the information
booklet when you have made a booking.
Throughout the year there are various fetes in Trausse or
in other villages and these fetes normally have a dinner at night
followed by dancing with music provided by a local or nearby band e.g. Trausse cherry festival
(usually mid May) where one can buy any cherry product
from the delicious cherries grown around the village - boxes or bags of cherries, jams, vinegars etc.
If you are looking for a Casino or trendy night spots then Trausse is NOT for you,
but if you want to spend 2-3 days in the car exploring the area, then some time biking or hiking the myriad of back roads and vineyards,
doing a tasting etc., attending a cooking class or trying local eating places,
taking a ride on the Canal du Midi and meeting the people of this area, then Trausse is for you.