Destination Guide: Toulouse
Renaissance architecture, picturesque streets and hearty
Linger in the rose-tinted Old Town's museums and bustling shopping lanes. Head to vast Place Capitole for a gourmet meal or a rich cassoulet.
Enjoy farm-fresh cooking with local wines. Choose Michelin stars around Place Capitole or pick from unpretentious Old Town restaurants serving local goose, truffles and succulent meat-and-bean cassoulet. For classic French dishes and local wines, opt for lively city-centre brasseries.
Renaissance mansions and contemporary art. Wander cobbled streets to the medieval St Sernin basilica and the pretty Renaissance museum Hôtel Assézat amid the rose-coloured stones of the Old Town. Cross the river to see Picasso's vast symbolic theatre backdrop at Musée des Abattoirs. Or sit in a real space rocket at the thrilling Cité de l'Espace theme park.
Flowers, fashion and comic-book heroes. The meadows around Toulouse are rich with the heady scent of violets and tiny Capitole shops stock hand-made violet perfumes and soaps. Browse big-name designers in the chic boutiques of the rue de Alsace-Lorraine, or take a side-street to stock up on Tintin books and memorabilia from Espace Tintin.
Riverside bars and historic theatre. The opulent red-and-gold interior of the 19th-century Théâtre du Capitole is a perfect setting for classic French theatre and opera. Locals relax over a Pastis in busy bars that line the river, or dress up for the casino on Île du Ramier.