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Toulouse tours and excursions

Toulouse tours

Walking tours

Toulouse has a pretty gruesome history, some stunning buildings and the largest market in southwest France (Roquefort and Gaillac wine anyone?), so there are plenty of gastro tours, history tours and heritage tours available through the tourist office, with details varying daily.

Tel: +33 5 40 13 15 31.

Boat tours

Les Bateaux Toulousains organise cruises on the Garonne River and on the Canal du Midi on board a converted barge throughout the year. Toulouse Croisières offers a similar service on board a bateau-mouche. Both are great ways to soak up the pink-brick skyline that gives Toulouse its nickname La Ville Rose (Pink City).

Les Bateaux Toulousains

Telephone: +33 5 61 80 2 226

Toulouse Croisières

Telephone: +33 5 61 25 72 57.

Toulouse excursions


The turrets and walled-in city of Carcassonne make it not only a UNESCO World Heritage site but also a spectacular backdrop for the fireworks on 14 July. Only 70km (44 miles) from Toulouse, this rocky outcrop can reached by bike along the Canal du Midi – and you can always take the train back.

Carcassonne Tourist Office, 28 rue de Verdun, Carcassonne

Tel: +33 4 68 10 24 30.


This lovely red-brick UNESCO-listed town has a half-timbered city centre and an imposing fortress-like cathedral. It showcases more 1,000 paintings, lithographs, drawings and posters by its illustrious native son, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, as well as some of his personal belongings. One of the largest carnivals in southwest France takes place here every February.

Tel: +33 5 63 36 36 00.
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Featured Hotels


Hôtel des Arts

Not to be confused with the substantially more upmarket Hôtel des Beaux Arts, this one may not have the glitz and glamour but it still has a great location. Just off Place St Georges, one of the most romantic parts of Toulouse, it's also within walking distance of the river.

Hôtel des Beaux Arts

For a room with an unforgettable view of Toulouse's Pont Neuf illuminated at night, try the Hôtel des Beaux Arts. The building itself has an 18th-century façade and a busy yet brilliant brasserie downstairs. Rooms somehow combine modern animal print cushions with a romantic charm from days gone by.

Le Grand Balcon Hôtel

There's a sense of fun in this 1930s hotel just off Place du Capitole. Fittingly, for a city associated with aerospace, the elegant rooms have a playful aviation theme to its stylish décor. They've even named a suite after one of its best-known guests: Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, aviator and Little Prince author.

Hôtel de Brienne

Just a few minutes' walk from the tree-lined Canal de Brienne, this smart design hotel manages to mix sleek contemporary décor with a cosy ambience. The funky restaurant and bar lead on to an attractive garden terrace, and there's plenty of intriguing modern art dotted about the common areas.

Hôtel Héliot

Decorated in a style that perhaps your grandmother would choose, Hôtel Héliot is cosy and comfortable. It's close to the main train station and the Jean Jaurès metro, and even though it's not on the doorstep of Place du Capitole, it's perfectly straightforward to walk there from here.

Hôtel Royal Wilson

Clean and simple, Hôtel Royal Wilson is within walking distance of Toulouse's city centre. With wrought-iron balconies, a Moroccan-style interior courtyard and a whitewashed interior, the décor might come as a pleasant surprise given the price tag. There's also a private garage and a secure lockup for bicycles.