This place has been inhabited since Antiquity. When was that? The Neolithic period around 3500 BC. UNESCO says it was constructed on walls dating from Late Antiquity.
It was on the crossroads of trade routes between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. The Romans saw it as a strategic location so built up the fortification. A French architect, Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, restored the site in 1853. When UNESCO added it to the list in 1997, tourism became another source of income in addition to manufacturing and wine production. It hosts a wine exhibition each year.
The Pyrenees mountains are to the south. Carcassonne is in the center of a triangle made up of the cities of Toulouse, Montpellier, and Barcelona.
Within the walls, the streets are narrow and many shops provide everything needed by the visiting tourist. Many of the shops are international brands.
The bridge above is the main way in and out of the city walls. The mote has been drained and turned into a garden.
The video below is worth a few minutes.
Our stay at the hotel in the walled city was very memorable. Cars are not allowed in the walled city. This hotel had a back door that they used to bring our luggage from the bus to the hotel. We were responsible for our carry on stuff that we had to carry through the cobble stone streets. The streets were very busy with tourists. Fortunately the day tourists had to leave about 5:00 PM. After that only those staying overnight inside the walls were able to wander the streets and take pictures. Unfortunately most of the shops had also closed and the staff probably left for their homes outside the walls.
The Hotel is Mgallery Hotel de la Cite. The link below will let you see the pictures of their lovely hotel.
Wikipedia link is : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carcassonne