Rendez-vous in Castres
Built along the Agout River, Castres, a step on the road to St Jacques de Compostela, garnered attention early in the 9th century, around the Abbey of Saint-Benoit.
The houses on the Agout river were then inhabited by weavers, dyers, tanners and dressers, claiming the first industrial vocation of the city: textile workers.
The 17th century bequeathed remarkable mansions, including the Episcopal Palace and its gardens, which are associated with the names of Hardouin-Mansart and Le Nôtre. It now houses the Town Hall and the Goya Museum, a Hispanic art museum.
Located close to the Parc Naturel Regional du Haut Languedoc, near the Black Mountain and Sidobre, Castres is a city with a rich historical and cultural heritage, offering many facets of Occitan life to discover.
Castres and cycling
The Criterium International has felt at home in Castres for quite some time, hosting the the time trials which saw won by Chris Boardman in 1996, and Bobby Julich in 1998. Apart from Tom Boonen, who won a Criterium stage in town, another Tour de France green jersey winner is directly bound to the city of Jean Jaurès. Jacques Esclassan, who topped the points standings in 1977, and won five Tour stages, was born in, and still lives in Castres.
The two stage winners on the Tour in Castres were Italian Bruno Cenghialta in 1991, and Spain’s Amets Txurruka in 2007. But Castres has never before been the launching pad of a stage heading for the Pyrenees.
Not to miss in Castres
- The Heritage
- Agout houses
- Chime Notre-Dame de la Platé
- Le Coche water
- The Goya Museum
- The Jaurès Museum
- The Archéopôle
- The Episcopal Palace and Garden of the Bishop
- The Cathedral of St. Benedict
- The old houses of artisans