What to see by car: Toulouse
Located about 10kms from the centre of Toulouse is a spectacular new space museum,
Cite de l'Espace. Here you'll find an interactive exhibition centre, with hands-on
displays exploring modern and astonishing technology, a life-sized model of the
Ariane V rockets, and a fantastic planetarium.
A little farther from the city is the attractive town of Albi on the Tarn River.
Albi was once a Gallo-Roman town and later the focal point of the Albigensian
Crusade, a war that was waged between the Catholic Church and the Albigenses
non-believers, known as the Cathars.
The main attraction in the town is the exquisite Gothic Cathedral of Sainte-Cécile,
an architectural marvel that was constructed without the use of flying buttresses.
It was built as a fortress to protect a cruel bishop who imposed Catholicism
on the people of Albi.
Between the cathedral and the river is the Berbie Palace, made of red brick
and dating back to the 13th century, when the archbishop resided there. It is
now a museum that houses the remains of the French artist, Toulouse-Lautrec,
who was born there. His works can be seen at the Musée Toulouse-Lautrec,
where there is a collection of over 600 of his paintings, alongside those of
other great names such as Degas, Bonnard, Matisse and Rouault.
Southwest of Toulouse, on the Gave de Pau River, is the city of Lourdes, a
major religious centre that attracts visitors from all over the world. It was
here, in 1858, that a young girl is said to have had a number of visions of
the Virgin Mary in an underground grotto of the river. The water from this source
is still reputed to have many healing properties.
Auch is situated on the west bank of the Gers River, west of Toulouse. The
town is the perfect destination for lovers of fine food and drink, as it is
known for its Armagnac brandy, foie gras, poultry and wine.
Selection of hotels in this region:
Mercure St Georges
Crowne Plaza Toulouse
Click below for a
full list of hotels and online booking