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Expat Exchange - 7 Tips for Living in Toulouse 2024
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7 Tips for Living in Toulouse

By Betsy Burlingame

French Riviera House Hunting - FRH
French Riviera House Hunting - FRH

Summary: Advice for people moving to Toulouse or thinking about moving there.

Living in Toulouse - 7 Tips for Living in Toulouse

This is a must read if you're moving to Toulouse or thinking about moving there.

As an expat or digital nomad, living in a foreign city can be an exciting adventure. Toulouse, known as the Pink City due to its unique terracotta brickwork, is a vibrant and dynamic city that offers a rich cultural experience. Here are seven key tips to help you navigate and enjoy your time in Toulouse.

1. Learn the Language

While many people in Toulouse speak English, learning French will greatly enhance your experience. Not only will it make daily tasks easier, but it will also help you connect with locals and understand the culture better. Consider taking a language course or using language learning apps. Remember, practice makes perfect, so don't be shy to use your French in daily conversations.

2. Explore the Neighborhoods

Toulouse is made up of diverse neighborhoods, each with its own unique charm. The historic center, Vieux Toulouse, is filled with beautiful architecture and narrow streets. Saint-Cyprien, on the left bank of the Garonne, is known for its vibrant market and lively arts scene. Meanwhile, the Carmes district is a trendy area with a bohemian vibe, filled with boutiques, galleries, and cafes. Spend time exploring these neighborhoods to find your favorite spots.

3. Enjoy the Local Cuisine

Toulouse is a food lover's paradise. The city is known for its rich, hearty cuisine, including dishes like cassoulet and Toulouse sausage. For a truly local experience, visit the Victor Hugo market, where you can buy fresh produce and sample local delicacies. When it comes to dining, Toulouse has a plethora of options. Some popular restaurants include Le Colombier, known for its duck dishes, and L'Entrecôte, famous for its steak frites.

4. Embrace the Outdoor Lifestyle

Toulouse enjoys a mild climate, making it perfect for outdoor activities. The city is filled with beautiful parks and gardens, such as the Jardin des Plantes and the Prairie des Filtres. The Canal du Midi, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a great place for walking, cycling, or even taking a boat ride. Don't miss the chance to enjoy a picnic by the Garonne River, a favorite pastime among locals.

5. Immerse Yourself in the Culture

Toulouse is a city with a rich history and vibrant culture. Visit the Musée des Augustins to see a collection of fine arts from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century, or the Cité de l'Espace for a journey into space exploration. The city is also known for its lively music scene, with many bars and venues offering live performances. And of course, don't miss the chance to watch a rugby match, a sport that is deeply ingrained in the local culture.

6. Get Involved in the Community

One of the best ways to feel at home in Toulouse is to get involved in the community. There are numerous clubs and organizations where you can meet people and share interests. Whether it's a sports club, a language exchange group, or a volunteer organization, getting involved will help you make connections and feel part of the local community. Do some research to find groups that align with your interests.

7. Navigate the City Like a Local

While Toulouse is a large city, it's quite walkable, and exploring on foot is a great way to discover its charm. The city also has an efficient public transportation system, including a metro, trams, and buses. For longer distances, consider using a VélôToulouse, the city's bike-sharing scheme. And remember, in Toulouse, it's common to greet shopkeepers when you enter and leave their shops - a simple "Bonjour" or "Au revoir" will do.

Living in Toulouse, with its rich history, vibrant culture, and friendly locals, can be a rewarding and enriching experience. By embracing the local lifestyle, learning the language, and getting involved in the community, you'll soon feel right at home in the Pink City.

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


French Riviera House Hunting - FRH
French Riviera House Hunting - FRH

French Riviera House Hunting - FRH
French Riviera House Hunting - FRH

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SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
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