As tempting as it might be to spend an entire holiday beside the pool at Rieumes, this area of France offers an exceptional choice of outdoor activities and interesting places to explore.
OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES Cycling Rieumes is within close proximity of the Pyrenean stage of the Tour de France. This area of the Ariege is big cycling county. For spectators Le Tour is very accessible (only five minutes away from us last year), and for serious cyclists we are close to col d'Agnes, col de la Porte and col de Latrape Canoeing/Kayaking The closest kayak club is Saverdun, just 15 minutes away, on the Ariege river. It is a great day out and suits all abilities. High Ropes Sequoia Vertigo, 20 minutes from Rieumes, provides vertical thrills for all levels, starting with a mini course and going up to 50m high zip wires in the trees. www.sequoia-vertigo.com Riding There are several excellent riding establishments close by including Pierre Germain, a breeder of Pyrenean Meren horses; he organizes local rides and longer mountain treks. www.merens-pyrenees.com Walking There are many local footpaths and obviously the mountains offer a limitless choice of hikes and climbs including Mont Valier, the highest peak in the Midi Pyrenees. Climbing and Canyoning Tucked away in one of the most spectacular wooded limestone gorges in the Pyrenees, Horizon Vertical offers an incredible adventure experiences with its 'roc aventure' and canyoning. www.horizonvertical.net White water rafting The town of Foix is the capital of the Ariege and the centre of white water rafting in the Pyrenees. Skiing The nearest ski station is Ax-les-Thermes and it is only an hour from Rieumes door to door; Ax offers skiing for all abilities and 75kms of pistes. Golf The nearest course is at La Bastide de Serou. www.golf-ariege.com
PLACES TO VISIT Cathar Castles The magnificent fortified city of Carcassonne is just an hour way as is Montsegur. The town and castle of Foix also offer a great day trip. Caves - The Pyrenees is well known for its caves including Lombrives and Mas d'Azil. There are also the famous cave paintings of bison, horses and ibex at Niaux. Mirepoix The bastide town of Mirepoix centres around a beautiful square and its historic cathedral. It has a very popular Monday morning market. There are local markets throughout the area, on every day of the week. Toulouse France's 4th largest city, with a 2000 year history, Toulouse offers a feast of tradition, culture, architecture, cafes, shopping. There is also the Airbus factory and the impressive Space museum. Thermal Baths At Ax-les-Thermes there are some fabulous thermal baths which include a steam room, sauna, caldarium and two levels of outdoor pools. It is the perfect therapy after a hike or a ski in the mountains. The beaches of the Mediterranean are within 1 3/4 hours drive and the Atlantic is about 3 hours.
Contact details for all these sites and more will be provided on arrival at Rieumes.
Rieumes, St. Martin d'Oydes, 09100 +33 (0)6 43 00 88 64