Travel Guide Europe France Midi-Pyrénées Saint-Girons



Saint Girons is a commune in the Ariege department in the French region of Midi-Pyrénées and is the principal town of Couserans. Nestled in the foothills of Ariege Pyrenees and just 2 km from the Gallo-Roman ramparts of the ancient town of Saint-Lizier, this beautiful town is the meeting point of two fast flowing rivers. Saint Girons is the centre of the commercial fabric production of the Couserans region and is engaged in local beer production, coffee roasting, cheese dairies, glass and paper making industries.

The strategic location and enjoyable climate of Saint-Girons have made it into an ideal tourist destination. The Pyrenees mountains along with its peaks Mont Valier (2838 metres) and Pic du Crabere appeal to both the adventure sport enthusiasts and the lovers of nature.

In 2009, the stage 8 of the Tour de France finished in Saint-Girons, after starting in Andorra La Vella.
For more information about the town and its surroundings check the official Ville Saint Girons website (French only), where you can find most anything.



Events and Festivals

Trade fairs and markets are usually held several times in a month. This attracts an entire community of mountain dwellers and the atmosphere is particularly lively, which is liked and admired by the tourists visiting the region.

Summer festival in Saint-Girons is the Rites festival where folk dance groups from many countries perform.




Saint-Girons has a fantastic climate with generally warm, sunny and dry weather during the summermonths of June to September. Due to its location it is not as hot though compared to many other places in the Mediterranean area, but temperatures usually vary between 22 and 26 degrees Celcius during the day and around 13 to 15 degrees at night. Winters last from December to March, with generally temperatures well above zero, though occasional frost and snow is not unheard of.



Getting There

By Plane

There is not airport, but the airports near Toulouse and Perpignan are just a few hours away.
Ryanair also has flights to Carcasonne which is even closer by.

By Train

Check the SNCF website for more details about how to get to St Girons from for example Perpignan and Toulouse.

By Car

There are fantastic scenic rides across the Pyrenees Mountain Range, both from other places in Southern France as well as from Andorra and Spain.

By Bus

Buses connect Saint-Girons with dozens of destinations within the Ariege department, as well as a few bigger cities outside the region.



Keep Connected


France is one of the best connected countries in the world, with data speed for upload/download ranked among the top 5 in the world. Most hotels and hostels would have in-house facilities to provide free internet access. Many major cities also have initiatives put in place to provide free wi-fi connection in public spaces. Alternatively there are internet cafés available in most cities/towns at a reasonable rate. Some private businesses, such as local cafés (or even the Starbuck's chain), may also provide wi-fi connectivity - keep an eye out for the signs by the shop windows/doors. Also look for the @ symbol prominently displayed, which indicates internet availability. However, with most homes now wired for the internet, cyber cafés are increasingly hard to find, especially outside the major cities.


See also: International Telephone Calls

To dial an international number from France, the IDD is 00, followed by the country code that you wish to dial, the area code and the phone number.
To call France from abroad, start with the international direct dialing (IDD) code from the country you're in, followed by French country code 33, the area code (drop the first zero in front of the area code), and the phone number. French telephone numbers are rarely given without the area code. The telephone number, including the area code, is made up of 10 digits. They are written in a set of 5 pairs of digits (i.e. 01 xx xx xx xx xx).
In France, the area code designations are: 01 - Paris Area ("Région Ile-de-France"), 02 - northwest, 03 - northeast, 04 - southeast, 05 - southwest, 06 - mobile phone providers. From 2010 onwards, 07 will also be assigned to mobile phone providers in order to cater for the surging demands for mobile phones.

Emergency numbers are 15 (medical aid), 17 (police station) and 18 (fire/rescue). You can also use the European emergency number 112 (perhaps a better choice if you don't speak French). These calls are free and accessible from virtually any phone, including locked cellphones.

France uses the GSM standard of cellular phones (900 MHz and 1800 MHz bands) used in most of the world outside of the U.S. There are several companies (Orange, SFR, Free, Bouygues Télécom and some others MVNOs like Virgin Mobile) offering wireless service. The country is almost totally covered but you may have difficulties using your mobile phone in rural or mountainous areas. If you stay for some time, it may be advisable to buy a pre-paid cell phone card that you can use in any phone that supports the GSM standard on the 900/1800 MHz bands. Then incoming calls and SMSes are free.


La Poste in France is also referred to as the PTT (short for postes, télégraphes et téléphones). The mailboxes are painted bright yellow and often there is a slot for local city mail and another slot for "outside mail". Normally there is a queue in the post office, but most of the post offices have the self service machine installed which is quite easy to operate. Nowadays many of the tabac and even some of the souvenir shops also sell postage stamps. Normally an overseas postcard costs almost as much as sending a letter. Mails sent in France also have a zip code. The first two numbers represent the administrative department (e.g. in Paris' case that would be 75).

Post offices are generally open from 8:00am to 7:00pm Monday through Friday, and 8:00am to noon on Saturdays. Apart from the basic job of mailing letters, most of the post offices do some banking activities also and some even have photocopy machines and cyber cafes for internet access.

For international package services, you might also check options with companies like DHL, UPS or TNT, which have competitive services and prices and might be faster in most cases.


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This is version 6. Last edited at 6:54 on Sep 20, 13 by Utrecht. 2 articles link to this page.

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