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Toulouse, called France’s pink city because of the rosy, glowing colours of its medieval brickwork – is a lively mixture of old and new. Renaissance mansions line the streets of the old town, where the campanile of the 12th century Basilique St-Sernin is an unmissable landmark, and graceful old bridges span the River Garonne. But Toulouse is also very much a 21st century city, as the capital of Europe’s aerospace industry and the home of Airbus Industrie. It’s a university town, so local life has a youthful edge. Toulouse is a gastronomic hub, and locals boasts that their take on cassoulet – a hearty casserole of beans, sausage, pork, and duck – is the finest that France has to offer, and is best enjoyed on a chilly autumn or winter’s day.
Main City Paris
Surface 811.6 km²
The city will be swarmed by fans, sparking like a thousand matches, their enthusiasm is catching, we’ll make friends with strangers who may or may not be wearing the same colour shirt, we’ll congratulate and console one another, party together as time ticks by unnoticed: in Toulouse we never need an excuse to party!
The City of Albi is dedicating a magnificent museum to the work of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, housed in the former bishop's palace adjoining the Cathédrale Sainte Cécile, it is the world's largest collection of drawings, sketches and posters by this great painter who was born in the city.
Wednesday night is ‘happy hour night’ at Le Saint des Seins – buy one beer, get another for free at this central venue for Toulouse’s students and other music lovers. The atmosphere is informal, the door policy is relaxed and the music – both live and from resident DJs who spin hip-hop, garage and indie tunes – is eclectic and edgy. If you’re looking for a great night out and a friendly vibe, this is definitely the place to be – and you’ll feel like an insider, because it doesn’t show up on the usual tourist radar. There are regular karaoke nights for those who love to perform in public.