Toulouse is an ideal day-trip destination or weekend getaway to explore for anyone keen on experiencing the rich cultural heritage the South of France has to offer. The best way to begin a tour of Toulouse and experience the warm atmosphere and timeless visuals of the city would be to navigate it via a good walk – especially as most of the locations are within easy walking distance.
So, what’s to do in a day in Toulouse?
When deciding where to have breakfast, there are lots of affordable pavement cafés situated along the streets of Toulouse – ordering a traditional French breakfast is the most delicious way to experience Toulouse at the start of the day. After eating, you might like to spend time wandering around the Place du Capitole just before it gets busy. It’s a vibrant must-see landmark if you find yourself close by!
By now, you’ll have noticed that almost all the buildings in Toulouse are a pretty rose colour. If you want to find out what other fascinating buildings Toulouse has in store for visitors, approximately a five minute walk away from the Place du Capitole, you can find the Saint Sernin Basilica, a beautiful church that you will immediately be able to spot after walking for a few minutes. And if you found this church stunning, you might want to take a good look at the Church of Les Jacobins which is probably one of the best and most unique pieces of architecture to explore in La Ville Rose.
Sightseeing can definitely take its toll on your energy levels! After heading back towards the city centre, which should be about three hours later, around 12pm, you can head back towards the centre of Toulouse and pick a place to have lunch. There are lots of eateries and if you crave something sweet rather than savoury, there are lots of patisseries too – and the cakes they display are really pretty!
After lunch, you might want to take a look at the Canal du Midi – it’s the perfect place to take a stroll and stands in sharp contrast to the rose-coloured buildings in Toulouse as there’s so much more greenery, and there are also boats you can reserve in advance if you wanted to experience a more relaxing excursion on the river.
This is the historic part of the city and contains lots of little side streets and cobbled alleyways – in other words, the perfect place to get lost!
At 2pm, you can also start to decide which of the local galleries or art museums you’d most like to visit. Although if you want to visit a museum which truly makes you appreciate not only art but the city of Toulouse as well, the Musee des Augustins is the place to go. However if art museums aren’t really your thing, and you’d rather be outside soaking up the nice weather, I would definitely recommend heading over to Les Carmes. This is the historic part of the city and contains lots of little side streets and cobbled alleyways – in other words, the perfect place to get lost!
After all this walking, you may find yourself needing a well-earned break! In that case, you might want to sit at a restaurant in Toulouse’s old town and have an early dinner before doing some evening shopping and hunt for some souvenirs to take back home!
At the end of a long day, once you’ve finished taking your last snapshots of the city, it’s safe to say La Ville Rose, despite it being smaller than Paris and less celebrated, is a city you won’t forget!