Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Canal du Midi

The Canal du Midi is a 240km long canal in southern France, linking the Garonne River to the Mediterranean Sea, between Toulouse and the Mediterranean port of Sète, which was created for the canal.

The canal was opened officially as the Canal Royal de Languedoc on May 24, 1681. It was built under the supervision of Pierre Paul Riquet, a rich tax-farmer who ruined himself in the personal undertaking and died broke in 1680, some months before the canal was opened to navigation. 12,000 workers toiled for fifteen years to create the canal. At Béziers it bridges the river Orb as the pont-canal. The tunnel 173 meters long under a hill at Enserune was the first canal passage ever built through a tunnel.

The Canal du Midi forms, with the Canal Latéral à la Garonne, a waterway (the Canal des Deux Mers) between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea.

The Canal du Midi has been on the UNESCO's list of World Heritage Sites since 1996.

External link