When my husband and I settled in Ariège with our two children in 1994, I quickly realised that no one we knew had heard of this beautiful region of the Pyrenees. Even the French hadn’t heard of it. In 1996, the the very beginning of the internet in France, it was clear to me that Ariège needed, indeed deserved, a web site about it. At that time there was no local or even national internet provider so I had to drive 90 minutes to Toulouse to visit a cybercafé and learn how the web worked. When a company called Cap Media in Varilhes began offering connections at local phone rates, we bought a modem and sent away for floppy disks of Netscape Navigator so we could have a connection from home. A few months later I bought the domain name ariege.com and in 1997 put online a little site in English. Then a Friend helped me make a French version. I gave some advertising pages to people I knew who ran bed and breakfasts, hotels and holiday rentals in the Couserans area where we live, all the while expanding the site. One day I received an email from the young owner of a hotel in St-Girons, Paul Fontvieille of La Clairière, asking how much it cost to advertise on ariege.com. So in 2000 Yvelise Tschierschke, a gîte owner who had been helping with the site, and I started a small company, SNC ARIEGE.COM.

The web has evolved enormously since 2000 and for many years the departmental tourism agency has been running its own comprehensive site to promote tourism in Ariège. When Yvelise decided she would retire at the end of 2017 I saw an opportunity to take the site in a different direction. We closed the business and now I’m focusing not on tourism but life in Ariège. Over the past 20 years I’ve met so many people here who have fascinating stories about their lives in this part of the Pyrenees. I want to share them.

For the first six months of 2018 the site will change very little. I have a long list of people I’d like to interview and I hope to have as a collaborator a photographer friend who has produced portraits of many of the inhabitants of her valley. By the end of this year the site will be completely transformed. At the same time I intend to continue to create web sites for businesses and associations on a freelance basis.

-- Kim Chevalier

Many thanks to these photographers

About us

From 2000 to the end of 2017 ariege.com was a site devoted to tourism in the department of Ariège. The small company that managed it closed on 31 December 2017 and 2018 will be a year of transition. Read more…