We were heading for Carcassonne when Sheila read the description of Minerve so we deviated there and spent an excellent day wandering around this natural fortress town (two river gorges join) where the evil Simon de Montfort ( the elder one and not the younger one they named a university after in Leicester) butchered another batch of Cathars in about 1220. Not much left of the castle but the rest looks good and we also walked through two tunnels where rivers have created ‘natural bridges’. Lots of British tourists, and several coachloads of others.
We eventually established that we could camp in the car park (€3) to get through the barrier), though the lavvies got locked up when the lady went home at 6pm. Accompanied by a friendly but hideously ugly stray dog we went to a restaurant in town for dinner where Sheila had a €20 menu with ratatouille with foaming goat’s cheese mousse topping for starters, chicken on sticks with veggies (including courgette in batter) for mains and poached peach for finishers. Gilroy stuck with a decent steak and chips, though he did help Sheila with her starters and finishers. With a bottle of local red and some coffees the bill was a touch over €60 ( before the current demise of sterling) but it was very tasty and the restaurant had an excellent view over one of the river gorges.