Because the dirt path along the canal is still of mediocre quality (at its best) we reduced today's stage of 45 km to a mere 10 km because we opted for a train ride with the bikes. All regional trains in France accommodate bicycles for free and, besides, the train fare is quite low, so it is an excellent alternative to get from A to B. However, in the early morning hours we biked along vineyards where the expensive grapes were being picked by local hands. Here's a grape picker unloading a full back basket of future red wine.
Narbonne seems to be a quiet and lovely town with a distinct southern flavour and lots of ancient history and art.
Today's Sunday market was colourful and teeming with all kinds of necessities and, especially, unnecessaries.
We also paid a visit to the magnificent cathedral Saint-Just & Saint-Pasteur and admired the grand work of the master builders in the Gothic era.
The town also hosts the beautiful archbishop's palace with an art museum. We went, of course, inside and checked the exhibits .
We are now along the Canal de la Robine, which is a "tributary" to the Canal du Midi, connecting Narbonne with the Mediterranean Sea just 10 km to the south. In the Roman era, Narbonne used to be a costal town with an important. harbour.
Tomorrow will be our last whole day on this tour-de-canal. We will be heading northeast from here to follow the last stretches of Canal du Midi before it flows into the sea.