You can discover the town of Rodez and its area on a signposted walking route, which will bring you through medieval streets and allow you to discover 16th-century dwellings. The town, founded around 2000 years ago, hinges around various town squares. Rodez, pronounced ‘Road-ez’, is a French town situated in France’s Midi region, to the north west of Toulouse. It is inhabited by 23,744 residents.
A bit of history...
The town was founded by the Ruteni, a Celtic population, and its inhabitants became known as the ‘Rhuténois’.
After the Roman conquest, the town became covered with vast public monuments and rich housing, which the Fenaille Museum recalls.
In the Middle Ages, the burg and the town centre formed the two districts of Rodez, separated from each other by a wall.
Numerous dwellings built in the 15th and 16th centuries still bear witness today to the riches of certain merchant families.
Facing the burg, the town extends up to the foot of the Notre-Dame Cathedral (13th-16th centuries).
Well maintained and restored in the 17th century, this imposing wall was destroyed at the end of the 18th century, leaving the town free to grow.
The Notre-Dame Cathedral is a historical monument.
It is a mix of different architectural styles.
400 steps lead you up to the top of the bell tower, near the statue of the Virgin.
There you can contemplate a magnificent panoramic view over the town.
Museums and tourist sites
The Musée Denys Puech is a museum dedicated to sculpture.This artist gave a large number of his works to the museum.The Musée Denys Puech is also called the pocket-size museum. The visitor is immersed in a universe where the collections and temporary exhibitions illustrate the different aspects of the history of sculpture from the middle of the 19th century until the present day. The Fenaille Museum displays the largest collection of menhir statues in France. No less than 17 items around 5,000 years old make up the museum.
The Fenaille museum was built thanks to the generosity of thousands of donors. Among them, Maurice Fenaille, a pioneer of the oil industry, who made a gift of the Hôtel de Jouéry, and who today still hosts the collections of the museum under his roof, giving them a distinctive atmosphere. The Musée Soulages was able to see the light of day thanks to the donations of Colette and Pierre Soulages. Pierre Soulages gifted his collection, valued at around 35 million euros (one of the most substantial donations of a living artist, made up of around 500 works and documents).Within it is a great number of works using different artistic mediums and techniques.
The Notre-Dame Cathedral in Rodez
Built between the 13th and 16th centuries, it is a Roman Catholic cathedral of the diocese of Rodez et Vabres.
Although the construction works took more than 4 centuries, the cathedral enjoys a remarkable unity, on its exterior as well as its interior.
In Rodez, you can discover one of the most beautiful stud farms in France, with guided tours.
Founded in 1809 in an old convent, of which the buildings are listed as historical monuments, this stud farm is situated at the heart of the town.
In the outskirts of the town, you can find what you need to practise your favourite outdoor activities such as golf, mountain biking, hiking, swimming or horse riding.
Every summer, at the end of June, you can take part in Estivada. It is an inter-regional festival of Occitan cultures. Welcoming up to 100,000 people, it offers performances, concerts and activities which mix Occitan language and culture.
For toddlers, a place of relaxation and leisure with geysers, massage chairs, waterfalls, a countercurrent river, swan necks for massages...Have some fun enjoying the slide and have a great time as a family or among friends.