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An attractive, fortified town

The fortified town of Lavaur in south-west France sits in the beautiful countryside of the Tarn department. The town is most attractive, mainly constructed in the distinctive Toulousain style of red brick patterned with pebbles. It is a typical French market town, with its Saturday market being a highlight of the week. And as well as offering plenty of shopping facilities, Lavaur possesses a most impressive Romanesque cathedral, which definitely merits a visit.

A town of charm and sunshine

Lavaur is also a town which draws in its visitors, welcoming them almost inevitably with sunshine, and gradually relinquishing its secrets, charming you more with each new discovery. When you wander around the town there are some shops and cafés which are instantly apparent, but it is not until you begin to explore the little side streets that you find the hidden cafés, boutiques and interior décor shops which make shopping here such a delight. And as well as the charming small boutiques, there are supermarkets and retail outlets on the outskirts of town.

Lavaur's Saturday market

It provides a riot of life and colour every Saturday morning and a leisurely amble around this most French of French markets is an experience you will not want to miss. Try the locally produced Foie Gras, the richest and most indulgent of treats, or buy a bottle or two of the excellent Gaillac wine which comes form this region. Don't leave without buying at least a basketful of the wonderful pink Lautrec garlic, a speciality of the region, which has a far superior taste to that of ordinary garlic (and don't worry about the after affects… you are in France!).

Out and about around Lavaur

Once you have explored Lavaur itself it will be time to take a look at what's on offer in the stunning countryside of the Tarn. Due to the wonderfully varied terrain here you will find yourself spoiled for choice with so many possible activities. There are all the usual sporting facilities for swimming, cycling (Lavaur has a great little bicycle hire shop) fishing and so on, but you could also consider trying your hand at quad biking, windsurfing or jet skiing! So if you've been indulging yourself in Lavaur's excellent restaurants here is the chance to work off some of those calories!

How to get there

Lavaur has the advantage of being only half an hour from Toulouse, which has both a TGV station and an international airport. Both easyJet and bmi have flights from the UK to Toulouse, and if you prefer rail travel it is a simple matter to get the Eurostar to Paris, change to a TGV fast train and sit back and enjoy the changing landscapes of France as you head south.

Property prices and availability in and around Lavaur

Although the Tarn used to be known as an area for cheap property purchases, property in and around Lavaur has become quite expensive over the last few years, due to the increased popularity of the area. Lavaur is a popular place to live (for many obvious reasons!), but the countryside around and about still offers the opportunity to pick up a lovely property for a reasonable cost. Property types here vary considerably, the most sought after tending to be the lovely old stone farmhouses which dot the landscapes of the Tarn. The French, however, tend to prefer new build villas on the outskirts of town!

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Lavaur AT A GLANCE

WHERE IS Lavaur?

Lavaur is located in south-west France, in the south-west of the department of the Tarn, very close to Tarn's border with Haute-Garonne.

Lavaur Property Map

IN THE REGION OF MIDI-PYRÉNÉES

Midi-Pyrénées Guide

Midi-Pyrénées Property Map

IN THE DEPARTMENT OF TARN

Tarn Guide

  Tarn Map


Population: 9,000


Access: By air: Fly to Toulouse with easyJet or bmi from airports around the UK. By rail: Take the Eurostar from London to Paris or Lille, then a TGV to Toulouse.


Economy: The economy of the town is based on distilling, flour milling and the production of wooden shoes, plaster and brushes.


Interesting fact: The town of Lavaur has an important place in Cathar history despite its relatively small size. It was taken by Simon de Montfort in 1211, as part of the Catholic Church's crusades against the Cathars.

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