Maison d'hôtes de luxe près de Cordes-sur-Ciel

Albi a UNESCO World Heritage Site


Albi a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the episcopal city built along the River Tarn. Additionally, it is the administrative centre of the département of the same name. The city is home to the magnificent Cathédrale Sainte-Cécile and the globally-recognised Toulouse-Lautrec Museum located just next door. This photogenic city is only 20-minutes drive from le Domaine de Perches and is therefore not to be missed.

The old quarter, Saint-Salvi is over 1,000 years old and along with the Pont Vieux, the Palais de Berbie and the cathedral, has made Albi a UNESCO World Heritage Site. According to UNESCO, it has a sector which “forms a coherent and homogeneous ensemble of monuments and quarters that has remained largely unchanged over the centuries.”

A stroll through the narrow streets on foot reveals the strong use of traditional red brick. This was a trend shared by its neighbouring cities of Montauban and Toulouse, with the bricks being used to construct the old city’s buildings in a colombage style.

Albi a UNESCO World Heritage SiteAlbi a UNESCO World Heritage Site: Saint-Cécile Cathedral

The gothic silhouette of the cathedral and its 78 metre tower, dominates the area for miles around and is equally striking up close. Declared the largest brick cathedral in the world, the construction of Saint-Cécile began in 1282 to demonstrate the strength of the Catholic Church. The interior is as impressive as the exterior. It is home to exquisite frescos painted by Italian Renaissance artists in the 16th century. Furthermore, the cathedral also houses one of France’s largest classical organs.

Albi a UNESCO World Heritage SiteAlbi a UNESCO World Heritage Site: Toulouse-Lautrec Museum

Most noteworthy, next door to the cathedral is the Palais de Berbie. This was formerly the Bishops’ Palace and is now home to the Toulouse-Lautrec Museum. One of several post-impressionist artists of his era, Henri Toulouse-Lautrec was born in Albi in 1864. Although he spent much of his life in Paris, the city very much claims him as its own. The museum holds probably the largest collection of his works anywhere in the world. As a result, it welcomes some 175,000 visitors every year.

In conclusion, Albi is without a doubt, a ‘must-see’ while visiting this part of South West France.



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