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Tourist Sites in and around Toulouse

Tourist sites and attractions within a radius of km* from the city center

* The distances are point to point and not driving distances!

At around: 0.02 km

Toulouse Capitolium Toulouse City Hall called The Capitole is one of the finest city halls of France.
It present frontage dates from the second half of the 18th century and was designed by architect Guillaume Cammas.
The Capitole has an interior court called Court Henri IV that is overlooked by the white, black and green marble statue of King Henri IV placed there in 1607. It was in the interior courtyard that on 30th of October 1630, Henri II, Duke de Montmorency (and Viceroy of Canada called at the time New France) an enemy of Cardinal de Richelieu was beheaded.
The interior of the Capitole is beautifully decorated with paintings dating from between the second half of the 19th century to the first...

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At around: 0.18 km

Historic Toulouse is well known for its beautiful residences -called here hôtels particuliers - built mainly during the 15th and 16th centuries when pastel - this blue vegetable dye - brought wealth to the region.
Among these building some that stand out are l'hotel de Bernuy, l'hôtel de Pierre and l'hôtel d'Assézat.
The Bernuy hôtel located at 1 Rue Gambetta, in the historic part of Toulouse, was built between 1528 and 1532 after the plans of master builder Louis Privat. Its design marks the beginning of the Renaissance style in Toulouse's architecture.
The hôtel bears the name of its first owner - the man who commissioned the building - Jean de Bernuy a very rich pastel merchant - he was the person who...

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At around: 0.26 km

The Maurand House While not exactly a cathar tourist attraction like the cathar castles or the monuments that celebrate the victory over Catharism, the Maurand House is an interesting building even only because of its age: it was built in the 12th century and with some modification is not only still standing but is now the home of the Graduate School of Broadcasting.
The house was in the 12th century the property of Peyre Maurand a rich dignitary of Toulouse that was in the same time one of the leaders of the local cathars.
During the years of cathar persecution Peyre Maurand is forced to renounce his religion and to embrace Catholicism.
The history does not record if he remained Catholic for the rest of his...

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UNESCO Heritage List At around: 0.29 km

Les Jacobins The Jacobin Convent - "Les Jacobins" - is an Occitan gothic architecture jewel.
The convent was built in stages during the 13th and the 14th centuries by Dominican monks.
The first church of the monastery was erected between 1229 and 1234. It was a humble structure 46 meters long, 22 meters wide and only 13 meters high, in accordance with the Order's modest living creeds.
It is here that the first University of Toulouse was founded in 1229 by the Dominican monks.
Due to the popularity of the Dominican preachers - who with their dialogs and discussions played an important role during the crusade against the Cathars - the church became rapidly too small to accommodate the big number...

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UNESCO Heritage List At around: 0.46 km

Saint Sernin Cathedral Saint Sernin Basilica - the biggest Romanesque style church in the world - was dedicated to the first bishop of Toulouse - Saturnin or in the Occitan language Sernin - who died a martyr death in 250AD. The construction of the present cathedral started in the 11th century on the site of a modest church erected in the 5th century above the Saint Saturnin’s tomb.
The events surrounding the death of the saint are described in the "Booklet of passion and the betrayer of St. Saturninus, bishop of the city of Toulouse and martyr" a religious work written in the second decade of the 5th century.
In the 3rd century AD Toulouse - or Tolosa - is one of the biggest...

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At around: 0.47 km

Notre Dame de la Daurade Basilica Notre-Dame La Daurade Basilica is probably the oldest church dedicated to Saint Mary in France.
Its nowadays structure - in neoclassic style and without a bell tower - was built on the site of the old abbey between the second part of the 18th century and the second part of the 19th century.
The origin of the initial church of La Daurade is wrapped in legend. What is known is that around the end of the 4th century AD a roman pagan temple situated on this location is transformed in a Christian Church. This is the time when Toulouse is the capital of the Visigoths Empire that extends from the Loire and Rhone valleys to the south of Iberian Peninsula.
The legend...

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At around: 0.6 km

Saint-Pierre-des-Cuisines Church "Saint-Pierre des cuisines" is one of the oldest churches in the southwest of France and one of the first Christian churches of Toulouse.
The name "des cuisines" that literally means in nowadays French "of the kitchens" comes actually from "coquinis" the old local language word for little craftsmen, which was an accurate description of the activity of the neighborhood's inhabitants.
The existence of the "Saint-Pierre des cuisines" church is recorded starting from the 11th century. The archaeological excavations are showing that the structure was built on the site of a Gallo-Roman necropolis dating from the 4th century Christian era. During the 12th and 13th century the church hosted major public events like the successive 1189, 1195 and 1222 proclamations of...

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At around: 0.65 km

Saint Etienne Cathedral It is believed that Saint Etienne Cathedral was initially a church built in the 4th century AD on the location of an old roman pagan temple. The first official mention of the church is found in the charter of rights given in 844 by King Charles II, grand son of Charlemagne, to the churches of Toulouse. The church goes through a significant rebuilding process in the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries, when the old roman church is replaced with a "meridional gothic" style structure. The exceptional size of the nave - that dates since the beginning of the 13th century - is due to the historical context of the construction time, a time of the crusade against the cathars when it...
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At around: 0.77 km

Bouquières Area of Toulouse The Bouquières neighborhood is - for some unknown reason - a less visited area of the old center of Toulouse. However, it is arguably the most fascinating parts of the city for the history loving sightseer.
Situated roughly between the Rue Alsace Loraine, Rue Ozenne and Jardin Royal and the Saint Etienne Cathedral, Bouquières is a maze of narrow streets and alleys bordered by old townhouses some of which were in past centuries the residence of some notables of Toulouse.
The name Bouquières comes most probably from the Occitan language word "boquièr" which means butcher for it is known that the Mage Square, situated in the heart of the neighborhood, was in the Middle Ages the location of a butcher's...

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At around: 1.15 km

Saint Dominic House Saint Dominic (or Dominique) founder of the "Order of the Preachers" more known under the name the Dominican Order, lived in Toulouse during different time periods between 1210 and 1216.
His first stay in Toulouse, between April 1210 and May 1211, was actually the longest and was prompted by the help that Fulk, bishop of Toulouse and a friend of Dominique's, needed in order to fight the spread of catharism.
Actually Saint Dominique first arrived in the region that is now the south west of France in 1206 when, being on his way to his native Spain from a trip to Danemark and encountering the Catharism phenomenon, this new heresy that was taking Languedoc by storm, decided to remain here....

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At around: 16.71 km

Bonrepos Domain Pierre-Paul Riquet (1609-1680) is the maker of the “Canal du Midi”, the artificial river built in the 17th century as a water highway between the Mediterranean Sea to the Atlantic Ocean. Realized between 1667 and 1681, the Canal du Midi is the largest engineering project of the 17th century and, today, the oldest canal in Europe still in operation.
In 1652 Pierre-Paul Riquet bought the Bonrepos domain - at the time just a fortified tower in the middle of a wooded area - and established here his country residence, building an imposing 3 levels, turret topped mansion surrounded by a dried moat, in the middle of a 30 hectares wooded park (one can still see, bordering the park’s walking paths, ...

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Mysterious At around: 27.38 km

Castela Underground Galleries of Saint Sulpice Situated exactly halfway on the road between Toulouse and Albi, Saint Sulpice is one of the first off built "bastide albigeoises".
A bastide is a town built in the late Middle Ages after a new, at the time, urban plan with a central square and houses surrounding it. There were between 300 and 500 bastides built in the southwest of France between 1222 and 1373.
Saint Sulpice was founded towards 1240 by Sicard Alaman a liegeman of Count Raymond VII of Toulouse.
On a knoll overlooking the l'Agout River, inside the bastide, Alaman erected a fortified castle equipped with living quarters for him and his family, his officers and the town's bailiff, armories, a watching tower and a chapel.
The castle was...

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UNESCO World Heritage List At around: 33.08 km

Notre-Dame du Bourg Church Rabastens is a little town - population 5,500 - situated on the main Toulouse-Albi axis, in the department of Tarn in the heart of the south west of France.
Built starting in the first half of the 13th century as a symbol of the triumph of the Catholic faith after the victory of the crusaders against the cathars, Notre Dame du Bourg church of Rabastens is considered one of the best example the gothic meridional architectural style.
The church was consecrated on the 29th of June 1318 by Bérenger de Landorre, Archbishop of Santiago de Compostela and legate of Pope Jean XXII.
Arguably the most interesting aspect of the church is its mural paintings. Hidden since the 16th century and forgotten under several...

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At around: 36.82 km

Caumont Castle Caumont Castle - Chateau de Caumont- is situated some 45 km west of Toulouse in the Gers department of the southwest France, in the old region of Gascony. The castle was built on the site of a medieval stronghold that used to belong to Gaston Febus (1331- 1391) a powerful feudal lord in the Gascony and Bearn regions and ancestor of the King Henri the 4th of France.
The nowadays castle is composed of two architecturally and historically distinct parts.
The gatehouse, the oldest part of a more typically medieval architecture, dates from the fifteenth century. It is what remains of the original castle. The newer part, the castle itself, was built between 1525 and 1535 in Renaissance style by Nicolas Bachelier a famous...

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At around: 38.1 km

The village of Avignonet-Lauragais Avignonet-Lauragais is a small village -population a little over 1000 –situated in the department of Haute Garonne not far from the "Autoroute des Deux Mers" that links Toulouse to Carcassonne to Narbonne. It is also a village situated on the banks of the Canal du Midi. The site of the village was inhabited since 8,000 BC.
Arguably the most important event in Avignonet-Lauragais's history took place in 1242, during the last years of the crusade against the Cathars, when in May of that year the Inquisition set up a tribunal here. The village was at the time the turf of Raymond d’Alfaro one of the officers of Raymond VII Count of Toulouse, a known cathar supporter.
During the night of May 12,...

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At around: 38.59 km

Magrin Museum and Castle Château Magrin is a little castle-museum situated on the top of one of those rolling hills that lie just at the feet of Mountain Noir range, in Tarn department.
It houses the only woad ("pastel") museum in France. The castle was built in the 11th century - during the crusade against the Cathars was a rebel stronghold - and extensively rebuilt in the 16th and 18th centuries. It even accommodated - for at least one night - King Henri IV in the turbulent year of 1585. (The room that the king slept in is still called King's Room!). The woad museum displays a genuine woad drier and a woad mill....

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At around: 39.54 km

The village  of Saint Felix de Lauragais Situated between Toulouse and Carcassone, Saint Felix de Lauragais is a small village - population 1354 - that offers from its highest point at 339m altitude an exceptional panorama of Languedoc and Midi-Pyrenees regions from "Montagne Noir" all the way to the Pyrenean Mountains, panorama that includes no less then 7 departments.
Like many old villages of France Saint Felix de Lauragais is a place where layers of history are heaped one on top of the other.
The village was inhabited since Neolithic times and was through the ages a Roman camp, a Visigothic fortress, a bastide.
It is here that the first Cathare Council took place in 1167. The council, attended by Nicetas,...

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UNESCO Heritage List At around: 43.55 km

Seuil de Naurouze Seuil de Naurouze was one of the 3 important parts _ besides the canal itself and the water reservoir - of the system called Canal du Midi. The water from the Saint Ferreol lake was channeled to this specific location "Seuil de Naurouze" that was established by Pierre Paul de Riquet as being the highest point - 189.43 altitude - of the Canal.
Water spilled on one side of the threshold flows towards the Atlantic while spilled on the other side flows towards the sea.
The threshold is physically represented by the water between the two locks called significantly "Ocean" and "Mediterranée" situated 5km from each other.
The complex of Naurouze was built between 1669 and 1673. It was initially a...

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Plus Beaux Villages de France At around: 48.28 km

The village of Puycelsi The name Puycelsi comes from the roman fortification - whose remains still exist - close to hill the village is located now: Celsium Podium, which means a high platform.
It is a member of "Les Plus Beaux Villages de France" family.
Puycelsi's more recent history goes back to 1180 when the abbot Pierre d’Aurillac hands over the village to Raymond V, Count of Toulouse, who fortifies the place. At the beginning of the Crusade against the Cathars the village is known to be a cathar stronghold.
The crusaders army lead by Simon de Montfort in 1211 and later in 1213 by his brother Guy de Montfort besiege the fort twice without conquering it.
In 1229 at the Treaty of Meaux...

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At around: 48.57 km

Belleperche Abbey The Belleperche Abbey was in the 13th century one of the three most powerful and wealthy Cistercian monasteries of South of France.
The initial abbey was built in the middle of the 12th century when a monk community that joined the Cistercian order moved in the present location.
During the Hundred Years Wars and the Religious Wars the monastery was at different times partially destroyed. It was later rebuilt at the beginning of the 17th century and in the beginning of the 18th century extensive construction work gave it the shape that can be seen today.
Nowadays the monastery houses the "Table Arts" museum. The permanent exhibition "The dinner is ready!" ("La Table est mise!") describes the...

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At around: 49.21 km

Gaillac Old Town and Wine House Gaillac is an old city in the department of Tarn.
The city's history stretches over more then 1000 years.
In the 10th century a monastic community settles on the banks of the Tarn River and a town is formed around this community.
The first documented confirmation of the existence of Gaillac dates from 996 AD when the town and its Saint Michel Abbey are mentioned in the last will of Raymond I, Count of Rouergue, Albi and Quercy.
The abbey itself is mentioned for the first time in 972 when it is consecrated by the bishop of Albi. The consecration document mentions also the existence of the Saint Pierre church.
With the development of the religious community of the town comes the expansion of the...

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UNESCO Heritage List At around: 49.8 km

Saint-Ferreol Lake and Revel Saint Ferreol Lake is at the heart of the complex water supply system of the Canal du Midi, alongside with which is included in the UNESCO's World Heritage list.
This lake that has a surface of 68ha is an artificial body of water that contains 6 millions cubic meters of water. It is formed by the Laudot and Sor Rivers whose waters are collected by a dam built between 1667 and 1672 by the engineer Pierre-Paul de Riquet. The idea was to build a system that will collect enough water from the Montagne Noire to allow the navigation on the Canal du Midi regardless of season and the quantity of precipitations.
Surrounded by mild rolling hills the lake's shore is...

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