Catharism Museum and Hautpoul Village
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The museum housed on the second level of the Tourism Office of Mazamet building is dedicated to the History of Occitan Catharism and through its descriptive panels, audio and video material gives the visitor a "crush" course on the heresy’s emergence, its customs and traditions, its main leaders and its decline during the Albigeoise Crusade. Unfortunately the museum - unlike the museum of Montsegur - lacks any artefacts. It is also a supporter of the school of thought that the Catharism was a variation of the Eastern European Bogomilism opinion contested by many scholars. It is however a "must" for anybody interested in Catharism.
The Hautpoul village situated at only several km from Mazamet can be the "practical" session after the theoretical part of the Museum. The village - more than 1,000 year old -looks upon Mazamet from the top of the hill it is situated at only several kms distance from the town. Hautpoul, founded in the 10th century by Pierre Raymond, vassal of the Viscounts of Albi, offers a magnificent panorama of valley bellow. It also displays the remains of the Cathar Castle and of its old fortified wall.
- April, May, September and October: Wednesday to Sunday .................. 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
- June, July and August: Monday to Friday ......................... 10 am - 12 noon and 2:30pm -6pm
Weekends and holidays .................... 3pm - 6pm
- Closing: January, May 1st, 1st and 11th November and from December 20.
New for 2012: Open Day (free entry) Wednesday the 1st February to April and from October to December: 1st February, March 6, April 4, Oct. 3, Nov. 7 and Dec. 5.
Guided tours by reservation.