Tourist information on Midi Pyrenees region in France
Taking a family camping holiday in the Midi Pyrenees has always been popular due to some of the famous places to visit like the Canal du Midi, the city of Toulouse and Rocamadour that seems to hang to a cliffside, but a newer attraction, the Millau viaduct has also become a great tourist attraction in this region of France. Yet we cannot forget about the skiing holidays or the adventure sports you could participate in at other times of the year.
Information, tourist attractions and places to visit in the Midi Pyrenees region
You will find the Midi Pyrenees located in the South of France bordering onto Spain, although at one point this is interrupted by the small country of Andorra, and to the North you have the Limousin region, North East is the Auvergne, East is the Languedoc Roussillon region and to the West you have Aquitaine.
The capital city of the region is called Toulouse, and because of the type of small red brick that has been used in the construction of the numerous houses and the many impressive buildings, it has also obtained the nick name Ville Rose, which basically translates into the Pink City, where the sun even seems to change the colour of the bricks as it moves through the day.
Although, Lourdes is the most famous city due to its spiritual history with the sightings of the Virgin Mary though time, and as such it has millions of visitors and pilgrims every year. In fact, after Paris, this city now has the most hotels and even if you are not religious, it is one of those places that will still enthral all and is a must to see if you are anywhere near.
Also, there are several departments that make up this region and many of you may have heard of areas such as the Gers, Tarn or the Lot, yet the Midi Pyrenees was a recent creation by the French government, so that it could encompass the city of Toulouse, which has now become the capital of the region.
Now this is one of the largest regions of France and incredibly it is larger than Switzerland and most of it is very rural with rolling hills and valleys with livestock farming such as cattle being very popular. Yet you do have the limestone plateaux that are famous for the product of Roquefort cheese, which is a part of the Massif Central mountain range and the Pyrenees mountain range that extends to the Spanish border. Plus they have a large vineyard area, even though it is not one of the very well known areas for producing the famous French wines.
But because of the countryside and its rural aspects, cycling, hiking and lots of other outdoor adventure sports like climbing, whether it be for the novice or the experienced rock climber are all activities that can be enjoyed in this region.
Midi Pyrenees Albi river Tarn
Midi Pyrenees Cathedral Sainte-Cecile
Now it is normally late November or into December that snow appears on the highest peaks and this is when the skiing season starts to take effect, whether it be downhill skiing, cross country skiing or snowboarding, this is a great place for a skiing holiday in France at a cheaper costs than some of the more well known ski resorts and there are even some French campsites open all year in the Midi Pyrenees you can stay at. In fact, Camping Caravaning Le Lustou is not just open all year, but also close to a ski resort as well.
However, as spring time approaches, the snow starts to melt and you get people looking at different types of adventures and this is where you normally find that the French campsites in Midi Pyrenees start to open. This is the ideal time of year for canoeing, kayaking and of course the white water rafting as the rivers swell and the current flows from the melting snow.
And when the summer is coming you find a different kind of outdoor enthusiast, because from summer into autumn it is the ideal time for walking, hiking, rambling, cycling and mountain biking along with other more extreme sports such as rock climbing, paragliding, hang-gliding and more, so this makes the Midi Pyrenees an all year round holiday destination.
Midi Pyrenees Lourdes Basilica
Some tourist attractions and places to visit in Midi Pyrenees Region of France
We have already mentioned Lourdes.. But it is the caves where supposedly the Virgin Mary was reportedly sighted that attracts so many visitors today, along with the very large ornate Basilica that has been built to stand guard, which in fact is one of the largest cathedrals in the world. And today people still come, even on stretchers or in wheelchairs, so they can to get to the caves and taste the water from these springs where the peasant girl had her visions.
You then have the Canal du Midi that starts from Toulouse and ends at L’etang de Thau near Sete in the Languedoc Roussillon region that is a major architectural wonder built in the 1700s and today, this is a must for people who love boat trips, pleasure cruises and anyone that likes the idea of spending time on water at a leisurely pace.
But not only will you enjoy the scenery, you get the experience the marvels of engineering with the many locks, the thousands of trees that were planted on the banks and much more when on your holiday in France.
Midi Pyrenees Toulouse-Lautrec
Now when it comes to Toulouse itself, even though it has some fantastic architecture, plus a lovely cathedral and lots of museums, and of course the Canal du Midi, it is perhaps best known for its aeronautical industry. Made famous by the flights of Mermoz and Daurat, and today it has now become the home to the Airbus company, so this will enthral anyone with a passion for flying.
Then you have Rocamadour which is another famous place that is perched hanging on a Cliffside and with its 12th century Black Madonna, its 13th century frescoes and its 14th century ramparts, is has got to be one of the must see places and probably one of the most amazing sites in France.
More recently there has been the construction of the Millau viaduct, which is the tallest traffic bridge in the world that has now become one of the famous tourist attractions in France located within the Tarn valley. And there is also a visitor centre here, with walks that provide superb views along with documentation and videos on the history, not only of the viaduct, but also on the surround area as well. But for many, taking a trip in a glider will be more awe inspiring, which is just one of the activities available with the regional natural park area as well.
You also have lots of other places you could visit whilst on your a camping holiday in Midi Pyrenees region, such as an unusual fortified medieval bridge and the old streets in Cahors, a large 14 century cathedral in Rodez, a unique medieval fortified cathedral in Albi and then a medieval town that is perched on a hill above a river called Cordes sur Ciel, that may interest you.
So, from scenery through to historical and adventure through to the very impressive buildings, there will definitely be somewhere to visit that all the family will enjoy, and of course, the Midi Pyrenees is a region that is ideal for those that love the outdoors when on a family camping holiday in France.
And good news….you will find many different campsites in this region that will be able to offer many different facilities like a campsite with a swimming pool complex or what about one of the campsites with fishing available, but whatever way you decide to spend your holiday, at a campsite, hotel or chateau the adventure starts with the first thing you have never seen before!!