Attractions Nearby Toulouse, Day Trips and Excursions
(Toulouse, Haute-Garonne, Midi-Pyrenees, France)
The surrounding areas of Toulouse offer numerous opportunities for daytrips. These attractions include many charming towns and villages, all of which can boast a fascinating and rich history, within easy reach of Toulouse. Each of these nearby tourist destinations feature plenty of attractions to interest visitors, as well as a chance to stroll around ancient streets and soak up the atmosphere.
Art lovers will find that a trip to Albi, the birthplace of Toulouse Lautrec, perfectly complements their visits to Toulouse's art museums and galleries. Some of the main attractions close to Toulouse are described here.
Known as the capital of Cathar country, Carcassonne is combines beautiful medieval buildings with a rather turbulent past. There's plenty of attractions to enjoy within Carcassonne, which is located just 96 km / 60 miles from Toulouse. On the left bank of the River Aude is the 13th-century Bastide St. Louis. On the other side of the river is the medieval Cité. If you've come prepared with walking shoes, it's well worth taking a half-hour walk around the 'lices', the area between Carcassonne's outer wall and inner fortifications.
About 70 km / 44 miles from Toulouse is the medieval village of Albi. Famous as the home and birthplace of Toulouse-Lautrec, it also boasts an awe-inspiring fortress-cathedral. Visitors to Albi's Palais de la Berbie can view the biggest collection of Toulouse Lautrec works.
Just 53 km / 33 miles from Toulouse is the town of Montaubin. Perhaps best known as a Protestant stronghold during the 16th-century wars of religion, Montaubin has an interesting mix of historic landmarks and appealing attractions. These include the main town square, the Place Nationale, and surrounding streets all lined with 17th-century red brick buildings. Saint Jacques Church, the Pont Vieux and the Cathedral Notre Dame are other main attractions in Montaubin.
A short drive from Toulouse is Moissac and its most famous attraction, the Abbey of Saint-Pierre. Whilst many of Moissac's ancient buildings were destroyed in a flood in 1930, miraculously the abbey was saved. A major pilgrimage church noted mainly for its Romanesque sculpture, it is home to France's oldest cloisters. To experience the cloisters without the crowds, it's best to arrive there early in the morning. Also of interest is Moissac's Centre of Romanesque Art.
St. Bertrand de Comminges
St. Bertrand de Comminges is a hilltop village located about 110 km / 70 miles south-west of Toulouse. Without doubt one of its main attractions and crowning feature is the Cathedral of Notre Dame, said to be one of the most beautiful 12th-century churches in the whole of France. Popular with film directors, 'The Name of The Rose', starring Sean Connery, was filmed here. Visitors who don't fancy walking up the hill to the village can take advantage of a mini train, which operates during the summer months.