Toulouse is synonymous with good food, good living and good tourist attractions. Indeed, Toulouse is the ideal destination in France as it combines everything that makes a good holiday memorable. It is more recognised as the Pink City (Ville Rose) for its distinctive pink brickwork, making the architecture both stunning and full of charm.
Toulouse has a long, diverse and rich history which spans thousands of years. The earliest settlement dates back to the 8th century BCE known as Tolosa. Soon came along the Celtic tribes, then the Romans, the Visigoths and the Franks. This makes Toulouse a fabulous destination for history buffs who can marvel in the diverse story the city has to tell.
There are many great places to see and things to do in Toulouse. The first historical attraction on most people’s list is the Notre-Dame du Taur and not only because it has free entry. The cathedral was constructed during the 14th century on the site of the tomb of Saint Saturnin (also known as Saint Sernin). The saint’s tomb was later moved to a basilica which was named after him. The cathedral itself is a stunning piece of ancient architecture and its magnificent bell tower conjures up striking images if days gone by.
The Saint-Sernin Basilica is the largest in Europe and could be argued to create the biggest sighs of appreciation. This stunning piece of Romanesque architecture was first erected in the 11th century to house the tomb of Saint Saturnin, the bishop of the city. As visitors tour around the basilica and delve down deep into the crypt they are amazed with the hauntingly beautiful designs and motifs as well as the many ancient relics.
Archaeology lovers will want to make their way to the Roman ruins. It consists of an amazingly preserved amphitheatre built in the first century and has managed to weather the test of time. Indeed, it is the only Roman building in Toulouse that has managed to stay whole. The amphitheatre is the place where the ancient people would come to listen to music and poetry readings as well as dramas. As you tour around the amphitheatre you can almost hear the sounds of lyre music and lyrics to classical poems.
The Musée des Augustins de Toulouse is considered one of the best museums in Toulouse. The building was erected in 1309 is worthy of a visit by itself. In 1840 the French government declared the building as a Monument historique. Inside, the galleries highlight the best of sculptures, paintings and other artworks dating from several historical periods.
Restaurants in Toulouse are an absolute dream and the local people take the art of eating very seriously. The local fare is quite diverse and signature dishes include bonbon de la violette and brique de Toulouse, as well as their own regional wines to complement them.
If you are searching for clean, comfortable and charming hotels in Toulouse you will be spoilt for choice. The city boasts a wide range of accommodation, from charming guesthouses to historic grand hotels to stylish and modern hotels in the heart of all the action. No matter your preference, the French service is friendly and excellent.
Toulouse is a city where history still walks the streets; the city is proud to showcase its brilliant and glorious past to those who visit. It is also a city where romance and love of art and culture can be savored. It is a city meant to be visited time and time again, falling deeper in love with it each time.