Travel has become such an important part of my life over the past few years. Fortunately writing The Everyday Man has brought me the opportunity to visit lot’s of interesting places that I would not normally think of. A prime example is The Tarn region in the South West of France.
The chances are you have never heard of The Tarn before, right? Well before I jetted off to catch the last rays of Autumn sunshine in the region recently neither had I however it really is worth a look, especially if your passions involve good food and or wine. Both are offered in abundance in The Tarn.
Albi, the main town in the region was my base for the trip and is located around 45 minutes from Toulouse. A quiet historic town that sits on the banks of the river Tarn and is build around the huge dominating medieval cathedral. The town was also home to the French artist Toulouse-Lautrek who was famed for creating the Moulin Rouge advertising artwork.
I particularly enjoyed wandering around the quiet narrow lanes that snaked their way all around the centre of the town and led ultimately to the Cathedral area.
Where to stay:
La Reserve – A small 5 star resort located just outside the centre of Albi in a beautifully tranquil setting by the river. As you enter La Reserve you are made to feel like part of the family and welcomed to explore the facilities that have played host to the likes of the late Queen Mother, Iggy Pop and Oprah Winfrey. Well if it’s good enough for royalty…
Where to eat:
L’Epicurien – For a small town Albi has a wealth of fantastic restaurants, my favourite of these was the Nordic styled L’Epicurien located just off the town’s main square. The restaurant has a light and warm to it with the open kitchen to the rear. The food is simple but delicious with a focus on locally sourced ingredients.
Where to spend an afternoon:
Solex Biking. The region is home to many expansive vineyards that service to wine trade. A unique and fun activity is offered by local company Solex Balades and offers guided tours of the countryside on some pretty cool (I want one) retro powered Solex bikes. On completion you can stop off at one of the vineyards to sample some of the fine local produce.
For further information on Albi and The Tarn visit www.albi-tourisme.fr