The parks and gardens of Toulouse, nature in the city

Toulouse
The parks and gardens ...

If Toulouse is indeed the “ pink city ”, it could also be qualified as “ green city ”. With its parks and gardens , its species of local or exotic trees , and its well-distributed landscaping , you can take refreshing or relaxing breaks, wherever you are in this metropolis. Classified " 3 flowers " by the Organization of " Cities and villages in bloom ", with its " remarkable gardens " and " remarkable trees of France ", Toulouse is recognized and rewarded for its green spaces . We take you on a walk in the heart of the pink and green city of Toulouse .

The historic gardens of Toulouse


We start our loop with a first green lung in the city . It consists of three parts, the first three major parks, designed in the 18th century: the Botanical Garden, one of the Grand Rond and Royal Garden.

  • The Jardin des Plantes is the oldest, since it dates from 1730. It is emblematic because it includes the Henri Gaussen botanical garden. Created by the Société des Sciences , it allows you to discover many species of trees and plant species. It also houses two ancient gates and the remains of a castle . Today, it is above all a friendly and family place that offers many activities for children: playground, rides, little train, pony rides, and even small shows on certain days ... It is located right next to the Museum of Natural History . The Allée des Justes des Nations crosses it, then you can walk it to the Jardin du Grand Rond.

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The entrance to the Jardin des Plantes, next to the Toulouse Museum

  • In the 18th century, cities give a country look and want to offer rides "nature" to the citizens. If the Jardin des Plantes has a botanical vocation, that of the Grand Rond was born in 1754, for the sole pleasure of Toulouse residents. Originally, it was called the “ Boulingrin ” square, by deformation of the English term: “ Bowling-green ”, the spaces reserved for English boules. But it became more attractive over time, until it was recognized as a “ Remarkable Garden ”. Today, we still play pétanque there. We also admire its beautiful trees, planted like a crown around its fountain, its flower beds, its statues and its bandstand . We climb on its suspended footbridges to span the boulevards and go from one garden to another… This giant roundabout is located in the center of the large alleys of Jules Guesde, Serge Ravanel, Frédéric Mistral, Paul Sabatier and François Verdier. After this large roundabout, we end this route with the Royal Garden.

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The Grand Rond garden

  • The main asset of the Royal Garden is its very old exotic trees and its beautiful statues of Fabre . It is also labeled “ Remarkable Garden ”. The walk is very pleasant in this pretty English garden , embellished with a duck pond and a small bridge.

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The Royal Garden of Toulouse

  • Opposite the Jardin des Plantes is the little Garden of the Georges Labit Museum . The whole point of this garden is to penetrate differently into the exotic universe of this museum. It is a succession of exotic paintings, with this Moorish villa as a backdrop. The atmospheres follow one another to make you discover Georges Labit's travels to the four corners of the world: in the Mediterranean, in the East, in Australia or even in Asia.
    >>> Click to read our article report on the Georges Labit Museum

  • The Jardins de la Ligne are part of the large “ Piste des Géants ” complex, which also includes the “ Halle et la Compagnie de la Machine ” and the “ L'Envol des Pionniers ” museum. You walk along this legendary track which saw the first planes of Latécoère and those of Aéropostale take off . It is a real journey through time and space . Along the runway, you return to 1918, with the first Toulouse-Barcelona flight, and you fly over the landscapes of these distant countries crossed by the Aéropostale, which are reconstituted in the form of gardens.

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The Compans-Caffarelli Garden and its Japanese space


A little further north, in the heart of the Compans-Caffarelli business district and its park, you enter the Pierre-Baudis Japanese Garden. This “ Remarkable Garden ” is the other green lung of the city center . It is inspired by the Katsura villa in Kyoto and you will find the traditional Zen spaces there : a tea pavilion, a typical small bridge over its body of water ... It is a real immersion in the Japanese universe , with its colorful decorative elements, its dragons and Tsubukai, bonsais, sea of sand ...

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The Japanese Gardens of Compans Caffarelli

The gardens on the banks of the Garonne


The Garonne offers a bucolic setting for the parks that border it: the Raymond VI Garden and the Praire des Filters.

  • We cross the Garonne by the Pont des Catalans, to reach the Jardin Raymond VI, next to the museum of modern art. Ideal to extend the visit after the museum, its breathtaking view of the river and its little tavern make it a friendly place. You will also discover different species of wild and medicinal plants , in a fun way with their stories, advice and their uses. You can also appreciate the Garonne from a new angle, on a footbridge, perched barely two meters above the water .

  • La Prairie des Filters is located between the Pont Neuf and the Pont Saint-Michel. Originally, it was a flood control area. To occupy this beautiful space in the heart of the city, many large-scale events are held there. Its position on the edge of the Garonne is particularly pleasant for walkers. It also allows it to host “ Toulouse Plage ”, on its fine sandy shore, by the water, during the summer.

  • By crossing the Garonne by the Croix de Pierre bridge, you reach the island of Grand Ramier . The Parc de la Poudrerie is located opposite the Île de la Poudrière , accessible by the little Chemin de la Loge. On the former black powder production site, this " eco-park " has been set up. Integrated into the “ Grand Parc Garonne ” project, its vocation is environmental and ecology education , through shared gardens, “ nature ” leisure activities and educational activities.

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Raymond VI garden

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The Quai de la Daurade Gardens, on the banks of the Garonne

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Toulouse and its many pleasant green spaces

The gardens that surround the city

  • We move away a little from the historic center of the city, to reach the Jardin de Barry . Located between the A620 motorway and the TOEC route, it brings a breath of refreshing pure air. It is famous for its beautiful shaded alleys , ideal for joggers. Its lake, which hosts ducks, moorhens and herons, is also a great success for family outings. Its lawns, with tables, benches and barbecues, await you for your picnics.

  • You have to cross the motorway to access Reynerie Park . Around his "madness", the sweet name that was given in the 18th century to a "pleasure house", an area for leisure and holidays, is housed a French park. It hosts tree species, but also rare bird species. This garden has been preserved and has retained its poetic charm of the time .

  • On the other side of the Garonne, on former agricultural land, the Parc de la Maourine brings together walking paths, which cross the district of Borderouge. Its main asset is its body of water , around which various spaces revolve. It thus houses the Muséum's botanical garden , with species classified by theme: scrubland and the Mediterranean, vegetation typical of the banks of the gaves, marsh flowers, vegetable gardens around the world, arboretum… A maze of meadows allows the observation of biodiversity. This natural space is home to endemic protected toads and many birds.

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Leisure and sports bases

  • Always along the highway, in front of the aerodrome, we arrive at the Parc de la Grande Plaine . It is a leisure center that offers all kinds of games and sports activities: bike park, skate park, children's play area, ping-pong tables, a football field and tracks. jogging.

  • Going north, the green area of Argoulets is more dedicated to sport . It is surrounded on one side by a large municipal sports complex and on the other end by the swimming pool . Inside, you have a gymnasium, a playground, a tennis court, cycle paths and jogging, football fields, rugby and skate park.

Outside the city ...


Around the city, you will also find something to satisfy your “ nature ” desires. “ Green flows ” like the Touch or the Amidonniers allow beautiful hikes and walks with the family. The leisure centers of Côteaux de Pech David or that of Sesquières and its large lake offer many activities. The banks of the Garonne are also landscaped Greenways very bucolic.

The good idea: What if we took you for a ride along the Canal du Midi by bike, from Toulouse? Follow us by consulting our report ...

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Here is our large loop of Toulouse green spaces which ends in this way. You just have to choose where to play sports, which park to go through to enhance your trips to the heart of the city or simply to walk and admire the beauties of nature. We hope to have inspired you with a relaxing break during your stay in the dynamic and bustling city of Toulouse.

Did you like our article? Find more on our Blog . Follow us on the Toulouse Pyrenees Guide Facebook page and on Instagram @guidetoulousepyrenees.

Article written by Stéphanie Tempier for the Toulouse Pyrénées Guide.


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