France, Aveyron: beautiful Rodez

Cathedrale Notre Dame de Rodez

Rodez is the capital of Aveyron in South-West France.  Aveyron is a land of green rolling hills and hard edge cliffs and fertile soil lending base economy in the agriculture. Its inhabitants are called Ruthénois. The high point of Rodez is without a doubt the cathedral Notre Dame de Rodez, a Gothic masterpiece that overlooks the town and its surroundings from the top of its 87 metre bell tower, with views  over the stunning city and surrounding area. The architecture inspired by the great cathedrals of northern France, the choir and the vast nave were built between the 13th and 16th centuries, yes, it took three centuries to complete this masterpiece.

The intricate and imposing Gothic tower of Rodez Cathedral
beautiful and high quality carving and windows inside Rodez Cathedral
Rodez Cathedral majestic organ
Rodez Cathedral
12000 Rodez France
+33 5 65 75 76 77

Soulages Museum – Rodez 

In complete contrast to the Cathedral, the Soulages museum is ultra modern, ample,  a striking construction that consists in a series of immense cubes hosting temporary and permanent exhibitions. It’s a very inspiring place.

The showcase building was designed by the Catalan Architects, RCR, in partnership with the practise Passelac & Roques Architects and Grontmij and Thermibel design business. It hosts Pierre Soulages’ work, the most famous French artist. The museum has just open (May 2014). Throughout the year, the museum  exhibits events of national and international reputation.

The first exhibition ever organised in Europe on Soulages’ Outrenoirs is a retrospective of his work. The temporary exhibition is black on black with  beautiful extra large scale canvas full of texture and plays with the lighting.  A permanent range will complement the museum’s collection, highlighting the first three decades of Soulages’ work. I just loved this Museum is a must see if you are in the area.

Soulages’ creation of the stained glass windows in Conques forms the core of the Museum – here are real-life size sketches
about Soulages at the museum

‘Musée Soulages is a museum in motion; it has a vast temporary exhibition
room and is designed to host events of both national and international
dimension : for modern and contemporary art, architectural and
theme-based frescoes from previous centuries, with other creative

cost: full rate 7€ / reduced rate 4€
Musée Soulages
Jardin du Foirail
12000 Rodez

[email protected]
t: + 33 (0)5 65 73 82 60

where to eat in Rodez : Cafe Bras

Adjacent to the Great Hall, Cafe Bras, the latest creation of the French star chef Michel Bras, It’s a back to basics cooking using simple local products. Fouace (pastry), pascade (specialty from the region, it’s between a pancake en omelette) , tripous (tripe) , bourriol or soufflé old Rodez with weeds and borage flowers was the highlight for me…  Beautiful meal!
Cafe Bras  – cleverly designed

The restaurant offers a seasonal cuisine in Rodez.   Beautifully honest crafted and authenticity of traditional cuisine of the Aveyron region. Nourished by the secular gesture, just passed down from generation to generation. It is all rigour in a harmonious balance of all its components and the instinctive accuracy of individual processes.  Through its simplicity the food shows the soul of the kitchen.

 The cheese and aubergine soufflé old Rodez with borage flowers was very tasty  and so was the bouef de race Aubrac served with celeriac, black radish and a creamy parsnips jus – amazing!  Simple food using some intricate techniques, local sourced ingredients with brilliant results. My favourite meal of this region. 


a nice rustic wine, that paired well with the beef dish. It’s a firm
tannins, medium bodied but tasty of redcurrant with suitable some
peppery overtones.
Dessert: la tarte au chocolat au lait & feve tonka, creme mascarpone and vanilla – what a delicious end to our meal! Bravo! 

all the action in the Cafe Bras kitchen

 Cost: Menu du jour (entrée du jour / plat au choix / dessert au choix) : €29/person  + glass of wine (€4.5/glass)
Great value for an excellent meal in beautiful surroundings.
 Café Bras (Musée Soulages) 
Jardin du Foirail – 12000 Rodez

Where to stay in Rodez : Chateau Labro

In the Château de Labro, fourteen rooms, an apartment and a luxury
tree-house in one if the château’s centuries old oak trees, tastefully
decorated combining romanticism and modernity. A real place to relax in a
setting that made our stay even more enjoyable. The bedrooms have a magnificent views over the countryside.  
The Chateau is about ten minutes from Rodez.  The 16th-century castle is now a sophisticated and welcoming house in a quiet and green area. This is the breakfast room, which serves local produce and lovely fouace!

 The tree house is a dreamy place, that takes you back to fairyland place
Chateau Labro: A swimming pool surrounded by vineyards –  beautiful setting for relaxation.
Cost: from €85-€135/room, breakfast: €10

Chateau Labro 

Route de Conques




Phone :


Fax :

for more things to do in Rodez: Umissables
To get to Rodez:
Airport is about 10 mins from the town with connections to London (approx 2h), Lyon and Paris (1h25mins).
By train: la gare SNCF de Rodez

I was a guest of Aveyron Tourism Board . All views are my own. I retained, as always,  full editorial
control over this review. This Aveyron trip was organised by Magellan PR



  1. November 3, 2014 / 10:17 am

    I'm not familiar with Rodez at all so what a wonderful introduction Rosana! I also wouldn't mind living in that tree house 🙂

  2. November 3, 2014 / 10:35 am

    Hey Jo, thanks for stopping by. Rodez is very nice city and I just loved the contrast of the old and the new. That tree house was very charming.