Toulouse; known as the pink city, home to extraordinary rustic beauty, a scintillating history and a bohemian vibe. It’s a place for the creative soul, and it’s the perfect setting to enjoy a cup of freshly brewed coffee in a charming shop overlooking the main square while working on your next masterpiece. My favourite element to Toulouse was not just it’s bewitching beauty, but how it awoke the explorer in me. Armed with a trusty camera and a desire to discover all it has to offer, I soon found exploring this southern French city to be more than I expected, with something around every corner, whether a towering monument to a grand moment in time, a small theatre, or a large, delicately designed piece of street art. These are just a few of the sights I found, whilst carelessly wandering the magnificent streets of Toulouse.
The street art
It’s no secret to learn that we love street art here at Travel Antics, from Barcelona to Amsterdam we just can’t get enough of it and the paintings on the streets of Toulouse highlight the artistic nature of the city. Some of the artwork looks as though it has come straight from the tattoos of sailors, while others look as though they have jumped from the pages of a well-maintained history book. Although, there isn’t as much of it as you’ll find in NYC, or Barcelona that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy the pieces that you’ll find.
This piece was painted outside the Comdt centre (a place for music and theatre) by the legendary street artist Miss Van, in 2016. She was born in Toulouse and given the name Vanessa Alice Bensimon. Her trademark is the use of unique characters, called poupées, or dolls.
There are many in Toulouse that seem to harbour a distinct love of motorbikes. The winding roads and warm climate make it the perfect place to indulge your love of the open road, and you’ll find many different kinds of motorcycle from classic Harley Sportster to custom designs; it’s a petrol-head’s paradise.
Cascading down the side of walls and along river banks you’ll find strange shrubs, some think of them as weeds or if like me, you believe they just add to Toulouse’s charm you’ll find them everywhere and they make for the perfect photo opportunity.
The elegant river-side pavements
The river Touch, Canal du Midi and Garonne, each river in Toulouse holds with it the power of deep relaxation, a simple walk along these beautiful paths and you’ll see first hand how these bohemian streets steal your heart.
Toulouse has some extraordinary gardens, 1km outside of the city centre is the Jardin Compans Caffarelli, home to nearly 25 acres, where you’ll find a collection of flowers, it’s a botanist’s paradise. There are some amazing sights and nestled in the centre is the peaceful Japanese Gardens. A perfect replica of a traditional botanical paradise in Japan, with mountains, lakes, statues and bridges.