Published On: Wed, Mar 27th, 2024
Travel | 3,212 views

Hidden coastal French city with same charm as Riviera but hardly any tourists | Travel News | Travel

The French Riviera has been a popular holiday destination for years, seeing millions of tourists coming its way each year.

However, tucked away in the Occitanie region, lies Narbonne, has possesses all the costal charm, with a fraction of the number of tourists. 

The city steeped in history, culture, and charisma yet often overlooked by travellers

Despite its rich heritage and array of attractions, Narbonne remains an underrated destination waiting to be discovered by intrepid explorers seeking an authentic French experience.

Narbonne boasts a storied past dating back over two millennia, evident in its well-preserved architectural treasures and ancient landmarks. 

As a former Roman colony, the city is adorned with remnants of its imperial past, including the awe-inspiring Via Domitia, a Roman road that once connected Italy to Spain. 

Visitors can stroll along the cobblestone streets of the historic centre, marvelling at the imposing Cathedral of Saint-Just and Saint-Pasteur, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture, or explore the ruins of the Roman Horreum, an underground warehouse dating back to the 1st century BC.

For gastronomes, Narbonne offers a tantalising array of culinary delights sure to satisfy even the most discerning palates. 

The city’s bustling markets, such as Les Halles de Narbonne, brim with fresh produce, artisanal cheeses, and delectable pastries, providing a feast for the senses. 

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Indulge in a leisurely meal at one of Narbonne’s charming bistros or brasseries, savoring regional specialties like cassoulet, a hearty stew of beans, sausage, and duck confit, or fresh seafood sourced from the nearby Mediterranean coast.

Surrounded by stunning natural landscapes, Narbonne serves as a gateway to the scenic wonders of the Languedoc-Roussillon region. 

Nature enthusiasts can explore the tranquil shores of the nearby Étang de Bages-Sigean, a pristine lagoon teeming with birdlife, or embark on a leisurely bike ride along the picturesque Canal de la Robine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

For those seeking sun and sand, the golden beaches of Narbonne Plage beckon, offering idyllic seaside retreats just a short drive from the city centre.

Art aficionados will find much to admire in Narbonne’s vibrant cultural scene, with its eclectic mix of galleries, museums, and exhibitions showcasing local and international talent. 

Explore the contemporary works of artists at the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire de Narbonne or immerse yourself in the city’s theatrical heritage at the Théâtre de Narbonne, where performances range from classical plays to avant-garde productions.

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