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Foix is a commune, the former capital of the County of Foix. Today it is the Préfecture of the Ariège department in southwestern France in the Occitanie region. It is the least populous administrative centre of a department in all of France, although it is only very slightly smaller than Privas. It lies south of Toulouse, close to the border with Spain and Andorra. At the 2009 census, the city had a population of 9,861 people. It is only the second city of the department after Pamiers which is one of the two sub-prefectures. Foix is twinned with the English cathedral city of Ripon.HistoryThe Romans built a fort on the rocky hill where the Château de Foix castle now overlooks the town. The town of Foix probably owes its origin to an oratory founded by Charlemagne, which afterwards became the Abbey of Saint Volusianus in 849. The current area was preceded by the County of Foix.The founding, in 849, of the Abbey Saint-Volusien allowed the development of urban living in the tenth century to the twelfth century. The city reached its peak in the fourteenth century.The castle, whose foundations date back to the early tenth century, was a strong fortress that withstood the repeated attacks of Simon de Montfort IV between 1211 and 1217, during the Albigensian Crusade. In 1272, when the Count of Foix refused to recognize the sovereignty of the king of France, Philip the Bold personally took the leadership of an expedition against the city, subsequently the count surrendered. In 1290, at a meeting of the Béarn region and the county of Foix, the city was practically abandoned by the Counts. Gaston Phoebus was the last to have lived in the castle, and by the sixteenth century the castle had lost its military purpose. The castle was then used as a prison until 1864.Explore the family-friendly attractions of Foix and add them to your vacation plans using our France attractions planner.
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Top Foix tours
Cité de Carcassonne and Wine Tasting Private Day Tour from Toulouse BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $373
Duration: 9 to 10 hours
Solo Heritage Pass BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $114
Duration: 365 days
Duo Heritage Pass BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $215
Duration: 365 days
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Outdoors in Foix
Shopping in Foix
Duration: 30 minutes
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55 days in France & Escalona BY A USER FROM FRANCE August, teens, kids, popular sights Preferences: August, teens, kids Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 10 days in Midi-Pyrenees, Languedoc-Roussillon & Andorra la Vella BY A USER FROM SLOVAKIA July, culture, outdoors, romantic, popular sights Preferences: July, culture, outdoors, romantic Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 10 days in Midi-Pyrenees & Languedoc-Roussillon BY A USER FROM ISRAEL July, culture, outdoors, romantic, popular sights Preferences: July, culture, outdoors, romantic Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 12 days in Foix BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA April, popular sights Preferences: April Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 3 days in Foix, Ussat & Montsegur BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, culture, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems Preferences: May, culture, historic sites, museums Attraction style: Popular & hidden gems Pace: Medium 3 days in France BY A USER FROM GREECE January, popular sights Preferences: January Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium