Things to do in Toulouse: France’s Most Underrated City
Toulouse, its name already speaks of mystery and adventure waiting to be uncovered. Located in the southwest of France with over one million inhabitants, it is already the fourth largest metropolitan area in France. The city is the centre of Europe’s aerospace industry. Thus, one of the first places to visit in Toulouse is the Cité de l'espace or better known as City of Space; a theme park dedicated to space conquest. Space enthusiasts should really take note of this theme park because many of its exhibits mimic real rocket launches and satellites. Parents should also take the kids to the theme park to ignite the excitement of space in them as it is not only fun but also educational.
What is even more educational are the religious buildings here in Toulouse, especially Saint-Sernin Basilica which happens to be the largest Romanesque church in Europe. Its interior and exterior makes for beautiful picture-taking opportunities as well as to bask in age-old architecture. The basilica currently holds relics and bodies of saints as well! There are also traditional pipe organs dating back to 1888, a sight not to be missed.
Dubbed as the Pink City because of its brick architecture, the buildings here are hard not to miss. Without checking out the beautiful art galleries, one can appreciate modern art through the graffiti on the walls of Toulouse by famous graffiti artist, Miss Van. Her work of different female forms expressing various emotions can be seen throughout the city. Also, if you are a fan of writer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry of 'The Little Prince' fame, visit the Hotel du Grand Balcon where some of his work is exhibited. It is said that the writer lived near the hotel as well.
Pay a visit to the famous boat restaurants that would not only spoil you but also leave you wanting for more. French delicacies such as foie gras which happens to be duck liver is popular amongst tourists who consider them a delicious savoury dish. For dessert, Toulouse has many ice-cream parlours and the flavours are endless. The children would definitely look forward to this stop as in France, ice cream is taken to a whole different level. Sorbet is a popular ice treat that is loved by the locals and foreigners alike.
At night walking around the parks and gardens in the city seems like the most natural thing to do. Toulouse recently incorporated a lighting plan where buildings and monuments are lighted up to give it a new face. Taking a boat ride along the River Garonne’s canal would have to be on the list of things to do when in Toulouse. The city is a very family-friendly place to go to with golf courses and theme parks abundant. Water sports are also popular amongst the tourist with whirlpools and saunas for the family to relax in. Take a trip to the southwest of France region, this trip would definitely be a memorable one.