Admirably situated on the edge of the River Tarn, old Albi forms a magnificent group of buildings with its brick-built fortified cathedral, its former episcopal palace and its old houses. Albi's combination of brick and stone buildings have earned it the apt nickname .
Masterpiece of the Southern Gothic style, the Sainte-Cécile cathedral boasts a richly-decorated interior containing magnificent frescoes, a Flamboyant Gothic rood screen and beautiful statuary. Next to the cathedral, the Berbie palace, an former episcopal palace, is home to the Toulouse-Lautrec museum. This museum exhibits a large number of paintings of this artist born in Albi. Its collection is a must for all art fans. The charming and very romantic gardens of the Berbie palace offer a beautiful view of the river and of the Pont-Vieux bridge.
A walk in the narrow streets of the historic centre reveals the presence of beautiful old brick-built timber-framed houses, as well as Renaissance mansions, such as the Enjalbert house and the Reynès mansion.
45 minutes from Toulouse, Albi, located on a promontory at the edge of the Tarn, can be proud of its rich heritage of the past. True, it has survived the centuries without too much damage. Even today, the ancient center with narrow streets lined with medieval houses and beautiful buildings bear witness to its history.
Sainte-Cécile Cathedral and the Berbie palace, built in the thirteenth century to consolidate the power of the Catholic Church after the chaotic episode of the crusade against the Albigensians, the Old Bridge, which in the eleventh century allowed the economic development of the city, the mansions of the sixteenth century that recall the flourishing period when the pastel, dye plant, was cultivated between Albi, Toulouse and Carcassonne... Without forgetting the colorful characters, like Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec or adventurers like Lapérouse and Rochegude.
But one of the strengths of the city of Albi is his side "south"... medium-sized city, with its brick architecture impresses with his singing accent, colorful markets where local products catch the eye as much as buds.
Along the Tarn that divides the city, a hiking trail in the heart of town following the banks of 4 km: the Breakaway Verte.
Albi, dynamic city, cultural city, college town, but also voted the most sporting town in France in 2012.
Since 1 August 2010, the Episcopal city of Albi joined the World Heritage of UNESCO. The episcopal city is structured around the cathedral, the palace-fortress Berbie where the museum dedicated to Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, the collegiate church and cloister Saint-Salvi... The area classified on 19.47 ha includes original medieval neighborhoods, historical monuments and major sites:
- The St. Cecilia Cathedral, largest brick cathedral "fun" in the world, a masterpiece of Southern Gothic, completed the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries by a unique interior: paintings on vault (XVI), larger last judgment (fifteenth), choir and statuary, rood screen and choir screen (XV), the largest classical organs of France (XVIII), two bathrooms Treasury.
- The Berbie palace (XIII-XIV).
- The Saint-Salvi collegiate church and its cloister (tenth to thirteenth).
- The old bridge (1040).
- The banks of the Tarn.