Toulouse is one of the powerhouses of the French economy but for the French, the city is beloved more for its gastronomy and its rugby than its technology.
The town is also known as ‘La Ville Rose’ for its traditional building material of brick and as the ‘Cité des Violettes’ which were heavily cultivated in the area in the 19th century. Toulouse offers everything you would expect from an important city, with lots of historical sites to see, shops to browse, music and entertainment to enjoy, food to savour and a vibrant nightlife. The climate of Toulouse is more temperate than further east so if you find the Med summers a tad too hot then the gentler climes of Toulouse and the Laurageais might be for you.
Toulouse gives its name to a particularly yummy type of sausage and its location on the edge of the old province of Gascony means that the city is famous for duck-based cuisine. The best known dish is cassoulet. There is an ongoing, good-natured dispute between Toulouse, Castelnaudary and Carcassonne as to where the dish actually originated but hey!, it doesn’t matter. What does matters is that you pick a good restaurant and order a dish. Cassoulet is not really a summer meal but you could always split it with a friend – you won’t be disappointed!