A delightful village to take the time to wander around. Stroll along the ancient streets and alleyways and appreciate the many buildings all constructed in pink brick - the covered market, the old sous-prefecture and the beamed houses. Toulouse is known as 'La Ville Rose' for its brick buildings; maybe Villefranche should be known as 'Le Village Rose'.

The best day to visit Villefranche is Friday when they hold an excellent market. Here, you can indulge yourself and buy some of the local specialities - foie gras, cassoulet and canard confit. The market has been in existence since 1668 when Louis IV himself authorised it.

Looking around, you may well see references to 'Le Pays de Cocagne'. Cocagne is an imaginary place where there is an abundance of food, wine and other good things. The territory around Villefranche earnt this nickname due to the production of the woad plant, or 'pastel'. Pastel was used in the dyeing process to make a particularly valuable blue colour and it boosted the local economy to such an extent that outsiders considered this a land of unrivalled riches.


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