Photo ©Myrabella

Situated in the heart of the new Occitanie region, the Tarn is a land of diversity and authenticity. Your stay at Le Soleil des Bastides campsite puts you in the heart of the Tarn, an exceptional region. Your discoveries will be as much visual and historical as gustatory, with our pink garlic from Lautrec, our Gaillac wines and our charcuterie from the Montagne Noire, among others. A vacation in the Tarn means discovering a languorous way of life, lulled by the warm welcome of the Tarn people, criss-crossing the rolling roads to discover the bastide towns of Albigensia, or cooling off on the banks of our rivers and lakes, much to the delight of children!

Discover the Tarn from our campsite near Albi.

History of the Tarn region

Tarn, located in south-west France in the Occitanie region, is a department rich in history and heritage. Its name derives from the river Tarn, which flows through it.

Traces of human occupation date back to prehistoric times, with remains from the Neolithic era. In Antiquity, the Tarn was part of the Roman province of Gaule Narbonnaise. In the Middle Ages, the region was marked by religious wars, notably the Cathar revolt.

Tarn is also famous for its bastides, fortified towns built in the 13th and 14th centuries. Over the centuries, the department has developed thanks to the textile industry, notably the production of woad, a dye plant.


Geology and landscapes in the Tarn

The Tarn is rich in unique geological diversity, from the mountains of the Massif Central to the fertile plains. The department is characterized by rolling hills, dense forests and meandering rivers. The limestone plateaus of the Causse de Quercy and the Montagne Noire mountains add to the charm of this region of France. The landscapes of the Tarn are also marked by the rock formations of the Gorges du Tarn, sculpted by river erosion and offering spectacular panoramas.

The main towns in the Tarn

Tourism in the Tarn is concentrated in the towns of Albi, Castres and Gaillac.

Albi, the prefecture of the Tarn, is a must-see city, with its cathedral of Sainte-Cécile and the Episcopal city, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites and masterpieces of Southern Gothic architecture, and its Toulouse-Lautrec museum. Castres, another major Tarn town, is renowned for its houses on the River Agout and its Goya museum, which boasts the largest collection of Hispanic art after the Louvre. Gaillac, meanwhile, is famous for its wines. This Tarn town is also home to many historic monuments and offers authentic charm with its lively markets.

The most beautiful natural sites in the Tarn

The Tarn abounds in natural sites of unique beauty.

The Aveyron Gorges in the Tarn, with their sheer cliffs and crystal-clear waters, are perfect for canoeists and hikers. The Montagne Noire, with its dense forests and peaceful lakes, is ideal for outdoor escapades. The Sidobre, a granite massif unique in Europe, reveals astonishing landscapes with its improbably shaped rocks.

These three natural sites are must-sees for tourism in the Tarn.

natural sites tarn
outdoor activities tarn

Outdoor activities in the Tarn

The Tarn is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

Hiking is a key activity, with marked trails through varied landscapes. Canoeing on the Tarn and Aveyron rivers promises relaxation and adventure.

Cycling enthusiasts will also find plenty to do on the many cycle paths in this corner of Occitanie. For sports enthusiasts, the Tarn also offers golf courses, equestrian centers and climbing sites.

Culinary specialities of the Tarn

Tarn gastronomy is just like the region itself: authentic and generous.

Local specialties include cassoulet from Castelnaudary, tripous from Naucelle and aligot, a mashed potato mixed with fresh tome cheese.

The wines of Gaillac, one of France's oldest vineyards, are also worth discovering, with a variety of reds, whites and rosés. And don't miss our foie gras, Lacaune ham and goat's milk cheeses .

culinary specialities tarn
festival tarn

Festivals and cultural events in the Tarn

The Tarn department is alive with festivals and cultural events all year round.

The Pause Guitare Festival in Albi is a major musical event, attracting international artists and thousands of spectators every summer. The Lavaur Carnival, with its colorful parades and decorated floats, is another not-to-be-missed tourist event in the Tarn. Another not-to-be-missed event is the Festival des Lanternes de Gaillac, inspired by Chinese traditions, which illuminates winter nights with its magnificent light sculptures.

What can you do for a weekend in the Tarn?

Would you like to visit the Tarn for a weekend? Here's a suggested program to make sure you don't miss out on any of the beauty of this French department.

Day 1

Albi is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Tarn. It's a must-see during your weekend in this corner of Occitanie. First, visit Sainte-Cécile Cathedral, the world's largest brick cathedral, with its richly decorated interior. Then, head to the Toulouse-Lautrec museum, located in the former episcopal palace, to admire the works of this Albi-born painter. And of course, don't miss a stroll through Albi's historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In the afternoon, set off on a canoe-kayak trip on the Tarn River, a few kilometers from Albi, to discover the region's natural landscapes from the water.

At the end of the day, head to Gaillac for a vineyard tour and tasting of local wines.

tourism tarn
visit castres

Day 2

Your second day of sightseeing in the Tarn starts in Castres. Visit the Musée Goya, home to a remarkable collection of Hispanic art. Then stroll along the houses on the River Agout and admire the colors and unique architecture of this part of town.

In the afternoon, head for the Sidobre, a unique granite massif, for a hike to discover its amazingly shaped rocks.

In the evening, return to Castres and sample the region's culinary specialities in a local restaurant.

Day 3

Staying in the Tarn for 3 days? Head for Cordes-sur-Ciel, one of France's most beautiful villages, and explore its medieval streets and artisan workshops. Take part in a pottery or glass-blowing workshop for an immersion in the local crafts of this corner of Occitanie.

In the afternoon, head for the Grésigne forest for a walk or bike ride. Afterwards, take a break at a local farm to sample local products, such as goat's cheese and regional pastries.

The Tarn, with its rich history, diverse landscapes, charming towns and culinary delights, is a must-see destination for nature and discovery enthusiasts. Whether you're a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast or a gourmet, the Tarn has something for everyone!

tourism cordes sur ciel