Wow - this is a complete treat, and you don't even need to leave the motorway to get there!
This is where the border between France and Spain used to be, and the Salses-de-Chateau was built here by the Spanish in the late 1400s. They used the latest military building techniques to create a ground-hugging fortress that would have been tricky for the French to get in artillery range - and also explains why it's so easy to miss seeing this from the road!
You can extend a visit to the castle with a ticket and tour for the inside.
And if a spot of wine tasting/buying appeals, then all you need do is to walk past the castle entrance onto a village road, go under a bridge and turn left at the sign to find the local wine cooperative.
Good for caravans.
How to get there
Just pull into the signed Aire de repos 'Chateau de Salses' between junctions 40 and 41.
The footpath to the fortress is marked from both sides of the pull-in, with a pedestrian subway to get you from the eastbound side safely.
The path is easy, just follow the line of sight to the fortress and then circle around the contours of the wall. On the way there you'll walk through pine trees, and there's plenty of open space for dogs.
The fortress itself is completely unfenced and generally quiet and peaceful.
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Edited: 5th September 2018. The details of this listing may have changed, and though the Driving with Dogs team do our best to confirm the accuracy of every listing, we cannot guarantee that the details are fully up to date and accurate. If you know that any aspect of this listing is incorrect, please suggest an edit to let us know.