One of the best bonuses of couch surfing is that your host can take you to places you wouldn’t have otherwise visited. Today my current host Elisa and I jumped in a car and made a 45 minute journey from Toulouse to Carcassonne, a fortified city off the Canal du Midi. I have seen many a castle during my time in Europe but this one gets a special nod because there is an entire city inside these walls. Within the fortress (free entry!) you can eat at a variety of restaurants (or bring your own budget picnic of wine, cheese, bread and veggies), peruse clothing and jewelry shops (or buy something if you have money) and watch an reenactment of a joust (10 euro! Too expensive. But we watched from a peephole in the town wall). It’s a full blown city medieval city and I felt very in touch with history.