A Travel Price Comparison for France Toulouse vs. Carcassonne for Food, Attractions, Old Town, and Families

Should you visit Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Toulouse and Carcassonne can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Toulouse

Toulouse is a vibrant, friendly, and relaxed city. Since it's a large city, you'll find plenty of things to do. It's a gorgeous place to visit. Other reasons to visit include food, shopping, and museums.

Carcassonne

Carcassonne is a fairytale, medieval, and historical town. With fun activities and sights, this is a small town worth visiting. It offers plenty of beauty for visitors. It's also popular because of the food and museums.

Toulouse and Carcassonne: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Fun shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for students
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with backpackers
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers


Is there more to do in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Visitors will usually find more to do in Toulouse than Carcassonne, as it offers more sights, attractions, and activities. Toulouse is better known for its food, nightlife, historical sights, shopping, and big city activities, while Carcassonne is more popular for its small town charm. Carcassonne is more touristy than Toulouse and is known for its medieval history, walled fortifications, and well-known castle. Toulouse is well known for its impressive old town, many museums, and delicious local cuisine. Also, Toulouse is famous for Basilique Saint-Sernin.

How is Toulouse different from Carcassonne?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Carcassonne and Toulouse. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

You'll find a number of very good museums and attractions in both Carcassonne and Toulouse.

You'll find a good number of museums and monuments packed into Toulouse. There is a long running history with countless landmarks and museums. Highlights include Basilique Saint-Sernin, Place du Capitole, Muséum de Toulouse, and Fondation Bemberg.

Visitors can fill many days exploring the museums and attractions around Carcassonne. The town is filled with medieval sights including the Château Comtal, the Basilica of Saints Nazarius and Celsus, and the Carcassonne Cathedral.


Is the Food Better in Toulouse or Carcassonne? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is very popular for its restaurants. Also, Carcassonne is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its restaurant scene.

Eat your way through Toulouse, as it has many local or world renowned restaurants to choose from. There are many unique regional recipes that make use of poultry, cold meats, and foie gras. Toulouse sausage, cassoulet, Poulet à la Toulousaine, and Foie gras d’oie are all popular local dishes.

Eating is part of the travel experience when you visit Carcassonne. There are a number of local restaurants that serve regional specialties such as cassoulet. You can spend a few hours exploring the castle and then grab a delicious bite to eat.

Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for Nightlife?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is a very popular place for nightlife. However, Carcassonne is not a destination with noteworthy nightlife.

Toulouse has a large number of nightlife venues. You'll find a large number of students in town so the nightlife scene is active and fun. For the most lively atmosphere head to Carmes, Saint-Cyprien, or Place Saint-Pierre.

Carcassonne is not a destination with noteworthy nightlife.

Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for its Old Town?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is a very popular place for its historic old town. Also, Carcassonne is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its old town.

There are many historical things to see in the old town of Toulouse. The old town is filled with terra-cota buildings and pedestrian walkways. The area flows out around the Capitole and is crossed by the Garonne.

Many people head to Carcassonne to see the old town. The medieval walled city is seeped in history and filled with atmosphere. Cars are not allowed in town.


Is the Shopping Better in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is a very popular place for shopping. However, Carcassonne is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Toulouse. There are many great shopping districts around town including Place du Capitole, The Saint Georges district, and Rue Alsace Lorraine.

Carcassonne is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for Families?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is a very popular place for its kid-friendly activities. Also, Carcassonne is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its family-friendly activities.

Toulouse is a very family-friendly destination. The city's known for its space industry so the La Cite de l’Espace (Space Museum) is a favorite attraction for kids and adults alike. You can also visit Aeroscopia, the airplane museum. La Halle de la machine is a truly unique and impressive playground. The city also has many other museums and outdoor spaces to explore.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Carcassonne. Kids who love castles will enjoy wandering the maze of rooms and getting lost in the medieval atmosphere.

Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for Couples?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is a very popular place for romance. Also, Carcassonne is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its romantic activities.

Toulouse makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. There are many beautiful parks, gardens, and walking paths. Make sure you take a stroll along the Canal du Midi and visit Jardin Japonais Pierre Baudis. This is also a great city for visiting a spa.

Carcassonne makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. It's a medieval city with an impressive castle and walled fortifications. It's a uniquely European sight that is great for couples who enjoy history.


Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Carcassonne is great for backpackers and budget travelers. However, Toulouse is not a good destination for backpackers.

Plenty of budget travelers and backpackers visit Carcassonne. There are interesting hostels in the area including a converted 17th century convent.

Toulouse is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. It's not a major stop off for many backpackers in Europe so you won't find as many hostels as you do in other cities.

Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for Students?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse is a good destination for its student-friendly activities. However, Carcassonne is not popular with students.

Plenty of students visit Toulouse. You'll find a diverse student population with many international students.

Carcassonne is not popular with students.

Is Toulouse or Carcassonne Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Toulouse and Carcassonne both offer notable public transit to get you around.

While Toulouse offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. There are a large number of bus routes that travel both locally and regionally.

Carcassonne has a few public transit options. You can reach the town by train from Dijon, Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, or Bordeaux and many people visit the town as a day trip.


Is Toulouse or Carcassonne a more walkable city?

Toulouse
Carcassonne

Carcassonne is a must-visit destination for its ease of walking around. Also, Toulouse is not as popular, but is still a nice city for its walkability.

Carcassonne is a very easy town to get around on foot. Cars aren't allowed in the medieval city so it's best to explore on foot.

Toulouse is very walkable. Within the city center it is very walkable and easy to explore on foot.

For even more information, also check out Is Toulouse Worth Visiting? and Is Carcassonne Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Carcassonne or Toulouse?

How long in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

You'll be able to find lots of things to do in Toulouse or Carcassonne to fill your time. Many travelers usually spend more of their time in Toulouse than Carcassonne because of the number of activities and things to do in the area. Usually, 2-4 days is a good amount of time for Toulouse, and 1-2 days is enough time in Carcassonne.

Families should spend more time in Toulouse than Carcassonne. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Toulouse, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Toulouse than Carcassonne. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Toulouse that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.


  • How many days in Toulouse or Carcassonne? Ideal Length of Stay
    Toulouse 2-4 
    Carcassonne 1-2

One day in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Visitors enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the dynamic city of Toulouse. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. Most people visit for the food. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

The town of Carcassonne offers museums and food. With all of its activities, you can easily fill one day here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Visitors enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the relaxed destination of Toulouse. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. This city offers something for everyone. Plenty of people spend a weekend in the area when traveling. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then a weekend is just the right amount of time to spend here.

Carcassonne is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this town makes for a great vacation. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Carcassonne, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.


Five days in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

The historic city of Toulouse offers shopping and museums. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.

Carcassonne is a popular choice for travelers. Five days is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

A week in Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Many people enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting Toulouse. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. Most people visit for the food. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Carcassonne is a great place to explore. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This town offers something for everyone.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Historical Tours in France, The Best 10-Day Tours in France, The Best One Week (7-Day) Tours in France, and The Best 2-Week Tours in France.


Which place is cheaper, Carcassonne or Toulouse?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Toulouse is €127, while the average daily cost in Carcassonne is €106. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Toulouse and Carcassonne in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Toulouse 66
    Carcassonne 61
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Toulouse 132
    Carcassonne 122
Compare Hotels in Toulouse and Carcassonne

Looking for a hotel in Toulouse or Carcassonne? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Toulouse


Hotels in Carcassonne


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Toulouse Hotel Prices and Carcassonne Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Toulouse 41
    Carcassonne 7.14

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Toulouse

Also for Toulouse, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Toulouse Private Transfer from Toulouse city centre to Toulouse Airport: $66
  • Toulouse Private Transfer from Toulouse Airport to City centre: $68
  • Private transfer from or to Toulouse Airport: $89
  • Private transfer Toulouse to Toulouse Airport TLS by Car or Van: $42
  • Arrival Transfer Toulouse Airport TLS to Toulouse by Car or Van: $42

Is it cheaper to fly into Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Prices for flights to both Carcassonne and Toulouse change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Toulouse 36
    Carcassonne 39

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Toulouse

For Toulouse, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • No Diet Club - Best food tour in Toulouse !: $53
  • Traditional Toulouse Food Tour - Do Eat Better Experience: $106
  • Victor Hugo Market Guided Food Tour with Tastings: $107

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Toulouse 15
    Carcassonne 14

Tours and Activities in Toulouse

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Toulouse.

  • Aeroscopia Admission Ticket: $17
  • Cheese food-tour through downtown Toulouse: $85
  • Cheese food-tour through the city center of Toulouse: $93
  • Day Trip to Carcassonne Cite Medievale and Comtale Castle Tour from Toulouse: $37
  • Expedition a City Adventure at Your Own Pace: $34
  • Gastronomic tour of Southern France: $327
  • Private 3-hour Walking Tour of Toulouse with Official Tour Guide: $259
  • Private Night Tour of Toulouse by Electric Tuk Tuk: $89
  • Private tour of Toulouse in an electric Tuk Tuk: $67
  • TOULOUSE WALKING TOUR and LOCAL IMMERSION: $404
  • Toulous: Glory of Occitania Audio Tour: $15
  • Toulouse : Must-see Walking Tour: $38

Tours and Activities in Carcassonne

For Carcassonne, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • A Self-Guided Tour of Carcassonne’s Ancient Basilica: $20
  • Best of Cathar Country: Full-Day Private Tour.: $211
  • Carcassonne 's Medieval Walls: A Self-Guided Tour: $30
  • Carcassonne : Guided walking tour to discover the city: $15
  • Carcassonne Ghosts of the Citadel Quest Experience: $8.32
  • Carcassonne Private Guided Walking Tour: $300
  • 2-Hour Private Walking Tour : $211
  • Ancient Basilica Self-Guided Audio Tour: $9.99
  • Castle and Ramparts Entry Ticket: $12
  • City Exploration Game and Tour: $6.54
  • City Exploration Game and Tour: $6.54
  • Crusades History Tour with a Guide: $22

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Toulouse 7.50
    Carcassonne 13

Sample the Local Flavors in Toulouse

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Toulouse:

  • Pub Crawl Toulouse: $20
  • Cheese and wine tasting workshop with a local cheesemonger: $71
  • From Toulouse Cite de carcassonne et wine tasting: $541

Sample the Local Flavors in Carcassonne

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Carcassonne:

  • Wine tour Cathar country: $480


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Toulouse and Carcassonne, we can see that Toulouse is more expensive. And not only is Carcassonne much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Carcassonne would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Carcassonne and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Toulouse would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Toulouse than you might in Carcassonne.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Toulouse Expensive? and Is Carcassonne Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Toulouse has a larger population, and is about 9 times larger than the population of Carcassonne. When comparing the sizes of Toulouse and Carcassonne, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.


When is the best time to visit Toulouse or Carcassonne?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Toulouse or Carcassonne in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Toulouse and Carcassonne. The city activities and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Toulouse this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Carcassonne for the small town charm and the family-friendly experiences.

In the summer, Toulouse is around the same temperature as Carcassonne. Typically, the summer temperatures in Toulouse in July average around 22°C (72°F), and Carcassonne averages at about 24°C (75°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Carcassonne this time of the year. In Toulouse, it's very sunny this time of the year. Toulouse usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Carcassonne during summer. Toulouse gets 275 hours of sunny skies, while Carcassonne receives 275 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Toulouse usually receives more rain than Carcassonne. Toulouse gets 41 mm (1.6 in) of rain, while Carcassonne receives 17 mm (0.7 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Toulouse 22°C (72°F) 
    Carcassonne 24°C (75°F)

Should I visit Toulouse or Carcassonne in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Toulouse as well as Carcassonne. Many travelers come to Toulouse for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area. Additionally, many visitors come to Carcassonne in the autumn for the small town atmosphere and the natural beauty of the area.

In October, Toulouse is generally around the same temperature as Carcassonne. Daily temperatures in Toulouse average around 15°C (60°F), and Carcassonne fluctuates around 17°C (62°F).

In the autumn, Toulouse often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Carcassonne. Toulouse gets 161 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Carcassonne receives 161 hours of full sun.

Toulouse usually gets less rain in October than Carcassonne. Toulouse gets 52 mm (2 in) of rain, while Carcassonne receives 90 mm (3.5 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Toulouse 15°C (60°F) 
    Carcassonne 17°C (62°F)

Should I visit Toulouse or Carcassonne in the Winter?

Both Carcassonne and Toulouse are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Many visitors come to Toulouse in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, most visitors come to Carcassonne for the museums and the cuisine during these months.

Toulouse is cooler than Carcassonne in the winter. The daily temperature in Toulouse averages around 6°C (44°F) in January, and Carcassonne fluctuates around 8°C (47°F).

Toulouse usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Carcassonne during winter. Toulouse gets 88 hours of sunny skies, while Carcassonne receives 88 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Toulouse usually receives more rain than Carcassonne. Toulouse gets 55 mm (2.2 in) of rain, while Carcassonne receives 51 mm (2 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Toulouse 6°C (44°F) 
    Carcassonne 8°C (47°F)

Should I visit Toulouse or Carcassonne in the Spring?

Both Carcassonne and Toulouse during the spring are popular places to visit. Most visitors come to Toulouse for the activities around the city and the natural beauty during these months. Also, the spring months attract visitors to Carcassonne because of the small town charm and the natural beauty.

In the spring, Toulouse is cooler than Carcassonne. Typically, the spring temperatures in Toulouse in April average around 12°C (54°F), and Carcassonne averages at about 14°C (56°F).

In the spring, Toulouse often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Carcassonne. Toulouse gets 178 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Carcassonne receives 178 hours of full sun.

Toulouse usually gets more rain in April than Carcassonne. Toulouse gets 64 mm (2.5 in) of rain, while Carcassonne receives 56 mm (2.2 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Toulouse 12°C (54°F) 
    Carcassonne 14°C (56°F)

Typical Weather for Carcassonne and Toulouse

Toulouse Carcassonne
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 6°C (44°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 8°C (47°F) 51 mm (2 in)
Feb 8°C (46°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 9°C (49°F) 45 mm (1.8 in)
Mar 10°C (49°F) 58 mm (2.3 in) 11°C (52°F) 44 mm (1.7 in)
Apr 12°C (54°F) 64 mm (2.5 in) 14°C (56°F) 56 mm (2.2 in)
May 16°C (60°F) 73 mm (2.9 in) 17°C (63°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Jun 19°C (67°F) 58 mm (2.3 in) 21°C (70°F) 28 mm (1.1 in)
Jul 22°C (72°F) 41 mm (1.6 in) 24°C (75°F) 17 mm (0.7 in)
Aug 22°C (71°F) 47 mm (1.9 in) 24°C (74°F) 32 mm (1.3 in)
Sep 20°C (67°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 21°C (69°F) 47 mm (1.9 in)
Oct 15°C (60°F) 52 mm (2 in) 17°C (62°F) 90 mm (3.5 in)
Nov 10°C (50°F) 49 mm (1.9 in) 12°C (53°F) 59 mm (2.3 in)
Dec 7°C (45°F) 56 mm (2.2 in) 9°C (49°F) 54 mm (2.1 in)