Quite a lot actually. The Southern French city on the River Garonne is a delightful place stuffed full of striking architecture, appealing al fresco cafes & restaurants and well-presented independent shops.
I stayed there recently for two nights sandwiched either side of a trip to Andorra, and spent a very pleasant few hours strolling around the atmospheric old town.
First the logistics. Toulouse’s main airport is a 35-minute tram ride terminating at Palais de Justice costing the princely sum of €1.70 each way.
The stop is a mere 5-minute walk to the edge of the old town and a further 15 minute stroll to the central Place du Capitole that houses the Hôtel de Ville.
Linger in the square over a coffee & crepe to gather your bearings.
Toulouse is actually the best signposted city I have ever visited. All the main attractions have directions together with distance and walking times.
My favourites were the imposing Basilica of Saint-Sernin, the Couvent des Jacobins and St Étienne Cathedral.
The Basilica has wonderful vaulted ceilings, unusual sculptures and beautiful stained glass windows.
The Couvent (convent) has several striking features including a geometrical diamond cloisters, more vaulted ceilings and colourful architecture. There is also a wonderful bell tower.
The Cathedral has fine Gothic & Romanesque architecture and, you guessed it, superb vaulted ceilings.
I visited with my great mate Hamish and we vowed to return with our ladies in the near future, possibly as a base for train trips to Carcassonne & Lourdes.
The bars & restaurants are plentiful, inexpensive & atmospheric, whilst there are a couple of fine jazz clubs if that’s your thing.
I didn’t check them out, but there are some renowned museums/art galleries and cultural venues too.
Coming next – two days in Andorra.