Bize-Minervois, Aude: tourism & sightseeing
Visit Bize-Minervois (Languedoc-Roussillon, France)
This is a guest article kindly contributed to France This Way by a visitor to the site.
Your every need is catered for here in Bize-Minervois, with one bar, two restaurants, a creperie by the river in summer, a tabac, butchers, bakery, hairdressers, cinema, sweet shop and a particularly well stocked wine shop.
During the hot summer months, the river turns in to a fresh water swimming pool with crystal clear water. A perfect spot for children, with a life guard at hand (between 1.30 - 7pm) and steps in to the deep-end. And if you’re a sun worshipper just stretch your towel out on the pebbled ‘beach’ area.
There is a romantic feel to Bize-Minervoise, with old stone houses covered in ivy with bright shutters and decorative iron balconies, old fashioned little shops, narrow cobbled alleys and gingham table cloths. Not surprisingly a quarter of the houses here are second homes.
Two kilometres from Bize-Minervois you will find L’Oubilo, a cooperative that sells seriously good olives and generally anything made with olives. With a huge array of olives, oil and tapenade to taste, you will be in olive heaven. And they aren’t like any old olives, they’re buttery, creamy even, totally smooth and utterly moorish.
With no one to guard this self-service tasting counter, it would be easy to over load your self. I watched, not long ago, as my father-in-law stood solemnly alone at the counter, sampling one olive treat after another, and I can’t really blame him. What’s so great about them is that the flavour hasn’t been ruined by some over zealous pickling, they are just au natural. And then there’s the oil of course, well if you want to stretch to over €10 a bottle, you will certainly be rewarded. Eat the olive oil drizzled on fresh bread, a great aperitif.
The cafe at the petrol station next door is a good local hang out, particularly when it is raining. They do a lunch time menu which is good value if a little basic, and great omelette and chips. You will be crammed in with the wine growers, the tradesmen and their dogs. It’s a great little place with a cracking atmosphere.
Turn right from Bize-Minervois and you will see Chateau de Cabezac. Although not open to the public, it’s pretty impressive, with pointed turrets reminiscent of Carcassonne’s walled city. It’s worth a visit if not for the view then for the wine. The red is of particular note. And if you want to eat something a little more special, try La Bastide Cabezac next door.
A small train runs between Narbonne and Bize-Minervois during high season, stopping at L’Oubilo along the way, so make a day of it.
Map of Bize-Minervois and places to visit
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Address: Bize-Minervois, Ginestas, Narbonne, Aude, Languedoc-Roussillon, 11120, France || GPS: latitude 43.3186, longitude 2.87111
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Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby
- Minerve: most beautiful village (11 km)
- Narbonne: secteur sauvegarde (18 km)
- Enserune: national monument (20 km)
- Grotte de la Devèze: site of natural beauty (22 km)
- Abbaye de Fontfroide (Narbonne): religious monument (22 km)
- Forêt de Fontfroide: site of natural beauty (23 km)
- Olargues: most beautiful village (27 km)
- Beziers: secteur sauvegarde (28 km)
- African reserve of Sigean: zoo or wildlife park (29 km)
- Gouffre de l'Œil Doux: site of natural beauty (29 km)
- Narbonnaise en Méditerranée: regional natural parc (32 km)
- Lagrasse: most beautiful village (33 km)
The French version of this page is at Bize-Minervois (Francais)